When it comes to SMT stencil cleaning, the best results come from nonflammable, slower-drying fluids working with lint-free fabric wipes (no paper with cellulose and glues) to get perfect results. Detailed results depend on the solder paste being used, the age of that paste, the design of the stencil and how it was made, whether you are applying it manually or in an automated system, how often you need to clean and the way you want to clean. It also depends on if you additionally want clean misprinted boards, or the epoxy dispensing systems, or the machinery itself.
Here are a few recommendations —
For simple, manual stencil cleaning our recommendation would be to use the Aqueous Stencil Cleaner (#MCC-BGA). Nonflammable, nontoxic and highly affordable, this cleaner vastly out-performs alcohol. One of our most reliable products, this Stencil Cleaner will never let you down. It removes even dried, hardened paste from the tiniest of apertures. It’s a great stencil cleaning choice and money-saving refills are available.
If your preference is for presaturated wipes, use the MultiTask™ Economy Surface and Stencil Wipes (#MCC-MLCW). Our unique “slam shut” lid makes one-handed cleaning easy, and ensures the tubs won’t dry out while waiting for the next cleaning event. These are the ONLY wipes in the industry without a shelf life and the ONLY wipes in the industry that use money-saving, planet-saving refills.
For stronger cleaning in a presaturated wipe, jump to the Uncured Epoxy Remover (#MCC-EPX) or the Stencil, Squeegee and Misprint Cleaner (#MCC-CDIW). As the names suggest, these are more powerful solvents to help remove more difficult contamination, like uncured chip bonders.