Heavy copper PCB – the ultimate FAQs guide

Heavy copper PCB – the ultimate FAQs guide

Table of Contents

Do you want to increase conductivity in the circuit? Or do you want to improve the overall efficiency of circuit boards? If yes, you’re at the right place! In the following guide, we will answer frequently asked questions. So, let’s get started without any ado.

What is heavy copper PCB?

Heavy Copper PCB

Heavy copper PCB is also called thick copper PCB. Heavy copper PCB ususally means that the PCB has copper thicknesses of about 3 ounces (oz) or more per ft2 in the internal and external layers. Heavy copper PCBs are reliable routing platforms because of the thicker plating in through-hole circuits and the combination of proper substrate and copper weight.

A particular amount of copper is also present on the sidewalls and plated holes of the circuit. You can increase your circuit’s overall conductivity by using heavy copper PCB. In addition to this, it greatly helps in increasing the substantial mechanical power of the connecting sites.

What are the differences between a standard PCB and heavy copper PCB?

Differences between Standard PCB and Heavy Copper PCB

The following characteristics distinguish heavy copper PCB from standard PCB:

  • Heavy copper PCBs have a copper thickness of three ounces, while standard copper PCBs have a copper thickness of one or two ounces.
  • Heavy copper PCBs are used in power electronics, whereas standard copper PCBs are used in normal circuits.
  • Heavy copper PCBs provide a higher level of conductivity than normal copper PCBs.
  • Heavy copper printed board circuits show better heat distribution than normal copper printed board circuits.
  • In addition to this, heavy copper printed board circuit has heavy mechanical stability in comparison to the normal copper PCB.

What are the weight and thickness of heavy copper PCB?

Weight and Thickness of Heavy Copper PCB

Generally, copper thickness is measured in ounces. So what does the weight and thickness of copper have to do with it? A measure of copper thickness is when a certain weight of copper is rolled to 1 square foot. So if you spread 1 ounce of copper over an area of 1 square foot; the resulting foil thickness would be 1.37 mils or 0.0348 mm.

The thickness on the heavy copper PCBs weigh about 3 ounces or more. This factor makes it different from the other types of printed board circuits. Both the weight and thickness of heavy copper printed board circuit make it perfect for electronic devices such as power supplies.

What are the capabilities of heavy copper PCB?

Some important capabilities of heavy copper PCB are given as under:

  • The board size can be made from 6mm*6mm to 457mm*610mm, and  board thickness can be 0.6mm – 6.5mm.
  • A yellow, white, or black silkscreen canbe available for the printed board circuit.
  • For solder masks, colors such as blue, green, red, black, white, yellow, and purple can be available.
  • All these capabilities of heavy copper printed board circuits make it perfect for any electrical circuit or power system.

What are the benefits of heavy copper PCB?

Benefits of Heavy Copper PCB

PCBs made from heavy copper have the following benefits:

Distributes heat effectively: A copper PCB offers the best thermal distribution in a circuit, which is one of its most common benefits. This is why it is used in circuits that operate at high frequencies and speeds. A harsh environment is also no problem for this PCB.

Enhances conductivity: The increased efficiency of copper PCB in improving circuit conductivity is another incredible benefit. Adding copper to electrical circuits always increases their conductivity since it is a good conductor of electricity. It also helps in the quick transfer of currents between linked boards.

High dissipation factor: Heavy copper PCB is now available with an excellent dissipation factor. It makes it best for the elements to have a high loss of power. Thus, you can use it in the circuits where you have to avoid the overheating problem.

High mechanical strength: In addition to its high mechanical strength, heavy copper PCB has another advantage. The PCBs last longer than standard ones.

What are the applications of heavy copper PCB?

Some common applications of heavy copper PCB are given as under:

  • It is used in solar power converters
  • Automotive Industries
  • Torque controls
  • Power line motors
  • Military equipment
  • Protective relays
  • Nuclear power industries
  • Rail traction systems
  • UPS systems
  • Safety and signal systems
  • Welding equipment

How is heavy copper PCB fabricated?

The fabrication of heavy copper PCB includes combining the weight of the appropriate substrate with a thick plating of copper. It is done with the through-hole circuit, which makes all PCBs in it a reliable wiring platform. After that, all the boards are manufactured using etching and plating techniques.In printed circuit boards, these techniques are used to add copper thickness through plated holes and sidewalls.

However, heavy copper PCBs require unique etching and plating methods. This is to ensure there is extra copper thickness. The fabrication of thick copper PCBs is incomplete when standard etching techniques are used. Traditional etching techniques only produce uneven overetched edge lines.

You can visit IBE PCB & PCBA to get a high-quality fabricated heavy copper PCB at reasonable rates.

What are the common issues of heavy copper PCB manufacturing?

Common Issues of Heavy Copper PCB Manufacturing

Some common issues of heavy copper PCB manufacturing are explained as under:

Plating voids: One issue is the presence of through-hoes in the circuit. The production of these through-holes creates a deposition of electrodes on the circuit boards.

Insufficient copper-to-edge clearance: Another common manufacturing issue of heavy copper printed board circuit is the extra trimming of PCB, which makes it close to the edge. Thus, the underneath layer of copper will be exposed, causing a problem in the functioning of the overall board.

Bad type of soldering: Here’s another manufacturing issue of heavy copper printed board circuit. Improper soldering in the circuit will refrain the copper from providing full conductivity. This will lead to decreased conductivity in the circuits.

Use of silver: The use of silver while soldering copper on the board also causes some problems in manufacturing heavy copper PCB. Besides manufacturing, it is also known for causing problems fabricating heavy copper printed board circuits.

Absence of solder masks between pad: The main role of solder masks between pads is to insulate the copper from coming in contact with other metals on the board. So, when there are no solder masks between the pads of the circuit, the chances of copper getting in touch with other metals will increase. This will cause a problem in the manufacturing of PCB.


We expect that the above FAQ guide has improved your know-how about heavy copper PCB. You can visit IBE PCB & PCBA to get a brief idea about it.

In IBE PCB & PCBA, we use all R&D technologies to craft a demanding type of heavy copper PCB. Also, all products at our place are pretty reasonable to purchase.

Visit  IBE PCB & PCBA to get the best type of heavy copper PCB!

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