From buying a bag of rice to air drying in a safe spot, you may have firsthand experience of trying all the tips that can rescue your electronics from spills, moisture, and water vapors. In certain situations, these measures are helpful. In other scenarios, they are the definition of too little, too late.
It’s because water damage is just as deadly as it is common for electronics. Even a seemingly little exposure to water can render your device unusable and your investment unsalvageable. That’s why you must do all that you can to protect your electronics from water contact dangers.
Thankfully, waterproofing technology is now able to ease these worries. With support from manufacturing processes and conformal treatments such as parylene coating, you can ensure that your electronics stay safe and clear from common water damage issues.
To help you learn more about how these solutions can save electronic devices, behind-the-scenes look at the secrets of waterproofing technologies.
A gasket is a protective barrier placed between different components to ward off possible leakage between them. The term is used for any hardware seals that serve this function of adjoining other objects in a machine or device.
Gaskets can be made from any material. They are also able to take any scale and shape that you want for your particular electronic assembly. But regardless of their size, shape, and form, these seals are sorted under the umbrella term of “gaskets.”
When manufactured with high precision, gaskets can easily prevent leakage from respective components. This is why they are custom made and rigorously tested during their manufacturing process before being applied to their intended devices.
Due to their universal application, gaskets and seals have long been used in industrial applications and equipment. Those applications involve, however, do not restricted to the automotive, aerospace, energy, and oil and gas industries.
By integrating into the critical machinery and devices of these sectors, gaskets and seals can prevent liquid and gas leakages to and from their respective components.
With the emergence of modern processes, gaskets and seals also play a significant role in specific waterproofing technology and conformal treatments such as parylene coating. With scrupulous attention to measurements and usage of compressive materials, gaskets are critical to electronic devices’ overall water resistance.
This is especially true for mobile devices, such as smartphones. Flagship models from Apple and Samsung now offer impressive Ingress Protection (IP) ratings that guarantee water resistance from high-pressure water jets and underwater submergence.
This is primarily due to gaskets’ usage, which effectively seals ports, openings, and other breaches around the device structure to keep liquids away.
Conformal coatings are yet another popular way to ensure waterproofing for electronic devices. These treatments are applied in the form of polymers that conform to the edges, dips, and bumps of a component. As a result, they keep external particles such as dust and liquid contaminants at bay.
Conformal coatings are available in the form of many polymers. But parylene is considered the most effective choice out of these everyday materials.
It’s because where other conformal polymers fail to keep water and moisture out, parylene can prevent any liquid breach from the component underneath. This delivers exceptional waterproofing and makes sure that a little water exposure doesn’t eradicate the respective component.
Parylene also stands tall in terms of its overall coverage for respective components. Due to the way the polymer is made, it can effectively cover those nooks and crannies that are otherwise unreachable for precision applications. This cuts back the risk of possible exposure and contributes to optimal waterproofing for the respective device it is applied to.
Due to these qualities, parylene has become a highly sought after waterproofing solution for printed circuit boards (PCBs), which are intricate in their texture and even more delicate in their durability.
Apart from being used in the PCBs of many consumer electronics, parylene is also used in various electronic medical devices, including but not limited to defibrillators and pacemakers.
Besides being a critical part of medical and entertainment devices’ manufacturing processes, parylene coating is also utilized in drones, aerospace, and industrial applications. This makes the polymer one of the best technologies for waterproofing electronics.
In addition to gaskets and conformal coatings, many manufacturers also make it a point to use special glues and adhesives to boost their electronic devices’ waterproofing capabilities.
Despite sounding highly simplistic, the method is widely used by a variety of big brands for their electronic manufacturing. This once again includes Apple and Samsung, and their penchant for making their flagship phones as water-resistant as possible.
While being popular, glues and adhesives are not enough on their own to protect an electronic device from water damage. Although done in sequence with other methods such as gaskets, seals, and conformal coatings, they add another layer of support to the electronic device and its waterproofing capabilities.
Since glues and adhesives are applied in a liquid form and take a solid shape afterward, they can provide additional seals against gaskets and any adjoining materials within the electronic device.
This way, they offer more strength to seals that are already available. With it, they also prevent any possibility of leakage that could take place from around gaskets.
When strategically applied around the components that are located near PCBs, these glues and adhesives deliver additional support for conformal treatments such as parylene coating. This adds another layer of efficacy to the already-powerful waterproofing technology.
These special glues and adhesives are made from various materials, with premium ingredients sharing the trait of temperature and water resistance in common. The sturdier glues and adhesives that a manufacturer uses in their electronics produce better results from overall waterproofing applications.
By knowing these secrets behind waterproofing technologies, you never wonder how your electronics can hold their own against water exposure. If you use this knowledge to purchase the right devices, you may never have to use a rice bag for anything other than cooking again.
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