3 Common PCB Design Problems

Electronics play such a major role in the day-to-day lives of consumers that most don't realize how many printed circuit boards (PCBs) they come into contact with each day. PCBs can be found in many toys, automated home controls, kitchen appliances, and even passenger vehicles.

In order to work effectively, a PCB must feature a functional design. Learn more about the common design problems associated with PCB manufacturing so that you will be prepared to overcome these design challenges when working with PCB elements in the future.

1. Improper Ground Plane Design

All PCB products must have a power supply system and ground planes that help to mitigate any electrical risks associated with the power supply system. Designers have a tendency to treat these elements as an afterthought when it comes to creating new PCB mockups.

Failure to consciously address the location and design of the ground plane could result in disaster.

Designers must work closely with manufacturers to determine the correct configuration and placement for each ground plane in order to reduce EMI radiation and prevent signal return path interference once the PCB is put to use.

2. Incomplete Design Rules and Constraints

PCB designers must supply manufacturers with a detailed and complete list of design rules and constraints. These rules and constraints govern both trace widths and spacing in the finished PCB design.

Manufacturers can enter these parameters into CAD software to ensure that the proper copper wire weight is used in the creation of each PCB.

Maintaining adequate trace widths and spacing between wires will help to eliminate improper copper balancing, signal interference, and high-current copper failure.

3. Careless Component Placement

The footprint of each PCB should be carefully thought out so that it reflects the PCB's intended use. Designers can fall into patterns of placing components in the same spots time after time. This design flaw could result in performance problems down the road.

All PCB designs should be reviewed to ensure component placement maximizes efficiency and reduces the potential for manufacturing problems.

Proper component placement and spacing will help improve the overall performance of a PCB once it has been implemented into any electrical device.

With electronics continuing to permeate the consumer market, PCB design is more important than ever.

Be sure that your PCB designs are accurate and efficient by reviewing component placement, creating clear rules and constraints, and planning for the proper location of any ground planes.

For additional info, reach out to a PCB solutions company.