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Best soldering iron – Top 10 reviews and buying guide 2018

It took the curiosity of mankind and his desire to innovate even before technology had rocked the world, for him to realize that he could use his hands to put two pieces together and come up with something glamorous. And just like that the birth of the best soldering iron came to existence.

The beauty of soldering dates back 4000 years ago when man did not have any special equipment but a bunch a metal pieces that he realized he could transform to just about anything. Thanks to his brilliance, we now take pride in homemade jewelry, musical instruments as well as circuits all created from the comfort of our homes.

With this discovery, the market is now full of all kinds of soldering irons. If you are tired of always spending so much in repair shops just to fix a few wires in on your devices, jewellery etc, it’s time you practiced soldering yourself. It will not only save you time but also money since most soldering irons come at affordable prices.

Confused about which one to buy? We have put a list of the best soldering irons that come with numerous useful features for you so that what you choose can suit all your soldering needs. A buying guide is also provided so that you may know what exactly you are looking for before settling for any kind. If you lack time to go through the whole article, here’s a brief comparison table that will give you the basics. Enjoy!

Comparison table

Name of the ironWattageTemperature rangeCall to action
Weller P2C Butane Soldering iron75 watts850° FCheck price here
Dapril Soldering Iron Kit Electronics60 Watts200° C- 450° CCheck price here
Hakko FX601-02 Adjustable Temperature Controlled67 Watts240°-540° CCheck price here
Vastar Full Set 60W 110V60 watts200-450° CCheck price here
Kusonkey Adjustable Temperature welding iron60 Watts200-450°CCheck price here
Liumy 110V/60W Electric iron60 Watts200-400°CCheck price here
Tabiger soldering iron kit electronics60 Watts200-450° CCheck price here

Soldering iron models

1. Kusonkey adjustable temperature welding soldering iron- high quality kit with all accessories all one case, ideal for a beginner

Best soldering ironSince you don’t want to spend your whole day soldering, this iron helps you save time as it heats up within minutes for you to use it on small projects with your son and bigger ones while creating new pieces. One limitation that you may encounter with this soldering iron though, is that you cannot tell what temperature it’s currently at because of the lack of indicator.

Specifications

  • Every tool is confined within one carrying case
  • It comes with 10 wire tubes
  • An iron stand and sponge are provided for you
  • Also contains tweezers and soldering tips
  • Holders and a switch are part of the casing
  • A thermostat for temperature regulation

Even if you don’t have an indicator with this package, you are provided with a thermostat so that you work within a temperature range of 200 -450 °C. This is a good range to help you with all your soldering needs as you repair and make new items as it heats up quickly up to 60 Watts.

Just by looking at the casing, you can tell that it is made of high quality leather that keeps all your accessories protected and organized so that you son may not harm himself as he tries to solder on his own. Sponges are provided so that you can clean the tips of your soldering iron. The cleaner your tips are, the faster it is to transfer heat because as you clean it, you prevent the rate of oxidation, making it heat up quickly so that you can work on all your projects within no time.

A pair of tweezers found in this soldering iron, prevents you from harming your hands as you work. Make use of the holders provided so that you can keep your fingers off in the process of repairing a broken item. To enhance safety, an on and off switch is provided so that you can take a rest without wasting too much energy since you need to save up for the next soldering item.

Pros

  • User friendly tools
  • Made from durable materials
  • Pocket friendly soldering iron
  • Light weight case
  • Smooth soldering with high temperature.

Cons

  • As a newbie, you may find the holder a bit difficult to place in position

Verdict

If you are new to soldering, get Kusonkey adjustable temperature welding soldering iron since everything is provided for you so that you don’t have to go looking for necessary items. Its affordable price also will not strain you since you have everything at your disposal.


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2. Dapril Soldering iron kit electronicsconducts electricity easily making it suitable for all repair jobs

Best soldering ironDoes your kid enjoy fixing small items but leaves a mess every time he dismantles things in his room? If you’re tired of organizing his always unkempt screws and nuts, help him stay neat as you encourage him to continue experimenting by getting him this kit. He may be the next famous engineer, who knows! Though one of the best soldering kits, most dapril soldering iron kits come in small capacities which may become quite limiting depending on what you’re soldering.

Specifications

  • Pure copper tips
  • 15 ESD tweezers
  • Steel iron stand
  • On and off switch
  • Soldering gun
  • Desoldering pump

Thanks to the inner heated ceramic technology used to design this soldering iron kit, you can be sure that you will achieve soldering effectively as it is made to dissipate heat better compared to other soldering iron kits. Fitted with a soldering gun, you can adjust temperature between 200-450 °C, making it convenient to work on different kinds of items. You should not however set very a high temperature too fast because the soldering iron heats up quickly and you could risk burning items or yourself.

The stand in this kit is made of iron to improve thermal conductivity so that you can solder with ease. Rubber handles are offered so that your hands are safe from any accident as well as comfortable enough for you to repair items without any hitches. Coated with silica gel, your soldering iron is not bound to get damaged easily thus making it safe to use.

Pros

  • High amount of power to help you repair
  • It is cheap and easy to use
  • Makes you organized due to PU carrier bag to accommodate all your tools.
  • Fast and efficient conductivity
  • Safety appliances are provided to prevent accidents

Cons

  • A short power cable may limit its use

Verdict

Dapril Soldering iron kit electronics will come in handy if you don’t mind a small capacity soldering kit. Though a bit limited, this kits contains everything you may need for experimenting with whatever it may be you’re soldering.


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3. Liumy 110V/ 60W Electric Soldering ironpresentable and classy looking as well as easy to use

Best soldering ironDo you find soldering irons too slippery to use? This soldering iron is specifically designed to give you a strong grip thanks to its silicone insulated cover. If it’s your first time using it, you may find yourself hitting the temperature dial as you grip your iron. This is because the gripping area and the dial are set next to each other making it hard to grip without turning the temperature down.

Specifications

  • 5 tips that you can easily replace
  • Contains a 110 V US plug
  • Temperature knob
  • Case made from stainless steel

Manufactured with an anti-oxidative solder tip, you will find this soldering iron friendly to use. Adjust the temperature knob to regulate heat between 200-450°C so that you can either work on a motherboard as well as wires in your engine. It generates power up to 60 Watts.

You don’t need to worry about wires inside the cable getting damaged after soldering for a while. The soft sleeve found on the best soldering iron, ensures that wires remain intact without breaking even as you use high temperature. You can replace its tip that come with various designs to prevent dust from affecting how fast it heats up for your soldering needs.

Pros

  • No requirement for a soldering station
  • Its power cable is long enough so that you can use it conveniently both inside and outside your house.
  • It is sturdy and well built
  • It looks very classy at an affordable price.
  • Dissipates heat evenly

Cons

  • A tight temperature dial may give you problems at first

Verdict

This simple to use soldering iron will teach you how to control your temperature when working on different surfaces. If you don’t want too many tools that probably leave you wondering what each piece is for, get a Liumy 110V/ 60W Electric Soldering iron and learn how to solder without confusing tools.


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4. Hakko FX601-02 Adjustable Temperature Controlled Soldering Ironideal for outdoor purposes.

Best soldering ironAre you looking for a long soldering iron that will go as far as your roof top to solder your solar panel? This soldering iron is just what you need because it is fitted with a power cord that is long enough make it comfortable as you move. You may however find it too expensive compared to other soldering irons.

Specifications

  • Temperature dial
  • LED lights
  • A power cord that is 6 feet in length and fitted with three different wires
  • Temperature control sensor
  • Ceramic heater

Though highly prices, this soldering iron makes you forget about the money and think about its value. Designed with great features, each will make your soldering experience a cool one with minimal limitations. Its ceramic heater for instance improves accuracy of your soldering process while the control sensor helps you achieve consistency as it evenly dissipates heat.

Operating within 240- 540° C, you can easily adjust your temperature using the dial to suit different kinds of solders. LED lights are also provided to indicate when the iron is heated enough so that you don’t expose it to very high temperatures.

Pros

  • Heats up fast with a maximum of 67 Watts and retains this temperature for a while so that you don’t need to keep adjusting it
  • High quality cord that is also long enough to extend outdoors
  • Tiny in size compared to others and light weight giving you an easy time
  • Contains efficient features to ensure stability bin temperature for different soldering purposes

Cons

  • Compared to its size, the cord may be a bit heavy making you strain as you use.
  • The package does not come with very clear instructions making a beginner find it challenging to use for the first time.

Verdict

Specifically designed for stained glass, Hacco FX601-02 adjustable temperature controlled soldering iron will make your work easier since you can easily adjust temperature while working on various solders. Do not be too quick to dismiss it based on the price or its size because its efficiency in soldering is what makes it worth considering.


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5. Weller P2C Butane soldering irona cordless soldering iron that is super portable

Best soldering ironA solder iron that does not require plugging in is convenient to use on repairing wires in the engine of your car even when you are travelling. This butane soldering iron is mobile and flexible for you to bring along when you don’t have access to a garage. Though it has made things easier, one of the challenges that you may encounter with this, is that as you refill butane gas in it, it may give you problems because it blocks easily.

Specifications

  • Piezo ignition
  • Travel cap
  • Uses butane
  • Side window

You may confuse this classy soldering iron with a pen but this is the savior that will come in handy for all your outdoor soldering needs. It is designed to help you solder by simply pressing down a button of the piezo ignition to give you power up to 75 Watts.

Working with this soldering iron does not only relieve you the stress of using cables, but also provides you with maximum safety as it is designed with caps to prevent the hot tip from burning you after you are through using it. A travel cap also ensures that no gas is emitted as you move.

With this, you can be sure that your temperature will not keep on fluctuating for once you set what you want, it remains remain consistent. Use the window on its side to check how much butane remains after every soldering so that you can know when to refill it.

Pros

  • You don’t strain lifting cables thus a very portable soldering iron
  • Heats up within seconds
  • High capacity of gas making it possible to solder for an hour before the next refill
  • Filling and refilling will only take you seconds and does not take too much butane so you can save more for the next time

Cons

  • You have to buy fuel separately since it does not come with the package

Verdict

For those who are not fun of cables, you will enjoy soldering with Weller P2C Butane soldering iron and probably never go back to cabled soldering iron again.


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6. Weller 8200PKS 120 volts 140/100-watt universal soldering gun kitlong lasting decent solder gun ideal for professional soldering purposes

Best soldering ironIf you are looking for something to take care of all your electronics for years, choose this upgraded version of Weller that is pistol grip designed to help you solder by heating up within few seconds with a single trigger. This design may not only look unique, but also provides you with a strong grip as you solder. It however, does not come cheaply since it is made for long term purposes so you may have to sacrifice more to purchase it.

Specifications

  • Fitted with LED lights
  • Pistol grip design
  • Produces 120 Volts
  • It comes with tips that are plated from tin
  • Contains fingertip triggers

Producing between 100 and 140 Watts, you can tell that this gun is hotter than the other normal soldering iron kits that you may be used to. This should not intimidate you as the solder iron gun is CUL certified because your safety is the manufacturer’s priority. Containing great LED lights, it is easier for you to solder in darker conditions which may not be constructed well to illuminate natural light.

Feel free to use this gun for all your soldering purposes that comes with triggers to help you control the temperature. Make use of the manual provided in the package so that you can understand how to solder as you use the triggers to increase and lower heat.

Pros

  • It 7 year warranty guarantees you that you are paying for a high quality soldering iron
  • You can use within six seconds of heating up
  • Constructed in high quality material that makes it last for years without needing replacement
  • Comes with all the tools that you may need.

Cons

  • The price is may be higher than some are willing to fork out for

Verdict

Leaving a good reputation, people have come to trust in Weller soldering iron kits and just like the old version, this upgraded one does not disappoint. Though some people prefer the old one, more reviews testify that Weller 8200PKS 120 volts 140/100-watt universal soldering gun kit works much better.

 

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7. Portasol 010589330 Super-Pro-125 Watt Heat Tool Kit with 7 tips a reliable soldering iron that ignites on its own

Best soldering ironSave yourself the trouble of always forgetting to bring along lights or matches for your soldering iron by choosing portasol heat tool kit that not only self-ignites but also does not depending on a cord. This makes it portable to travel with, in case you are working on a project along the way. If you are new to this cordless kit, you may find it hard to put the flame on with the first few clicks.

Specifications

  • Carrier bag casing
  • Uses butane gas
  • Piezo ignition
  • Hot air blower that helps in heat shrinking
  • Pre tinned 7 soldering tips
  • Does not come with a cord.

Powered by butane gas, this soldering iron makes use of 125 Watts. It will only take you 10 seconds to get a full refill of the gas and solder for more than an hour without stopping for more. The different kinds of tips that comes with the soldering iron, has the ability to transform it into a hot air blower as well as a power torch thus increasing flexibility.

Get more organized with its carrier casing that makes you look presentable as well as protects any kind of gas leakage as you move. Its deflector tips help you achieve a clean tool kit with no dust for easy soldering. The lack of a cord makes it easy to use anywhere without depending on electricity boost.

Pros

  • The casing is strong and durable
  • A refill will only take a few seconds with less complicated steps
  • It does not need any cables, lighters or matches.
  • Within 40 seconds, your tool kit is ready to solder
  • You are provided with one year warranty with this purchase

Cons

  • Some people experience clogging when they purchase low quality impure butane gas

Verdict

Though ideal for travel fanatics, Portasol 010589330 Super-Pro-125 Watt Heat Tool Kit is not allowed on a plane. Therefore, consider how and where you want to use and see if it fits your travelling needs. It is however an efficient soldering iron that will get the work done without much efforts.

 

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8. Vastar full set 60 W 110 V Soldering iron kitplay and plug soldering kit

Best soldering ironWhat makes this soldering iron stand out from the rest is the use of chip fixed resistor to make soldering process smooth as opposed to other iron kits that use color ring resistance which may give you challenges as you work on different solders. Though on the cheaper side and differently designed, you may find the quality of this soldering iron wanting.

Specifications

  • Thermostat circuit
  • 5 soldering iron tips
  • A pair of Tweezers
  • Desoldering pump
  • A soldering stand

Distributing heat evenly, the iron kit heats up quickly with temperatures ranging from 200-450° C. Manufactured with stainless steel, it helps in efficient heat dissipation as you regulate the amount of temperature you want to use with the wheel knob attached to it. Making use of 60 watts power, you are able to solder lots of items within few hours. A whole range of accessories are featured here, so that you can enjoy soldering as a beginner. Some of them include, a soldering stand, a desoldering pump as well as tweezers.

Plug in the 59 inch cable length and make use of it few steps from the socket. Different tips are included so that you can replace them as you solder various items thus increasing flexibility to achieve better results. As you swap out the tips, you should be careful so that the ceramic induction used on them does not cause harm on your arms.

Pros

  • Among one of the cheap soldering iron
  • Comes with lots of accessories
  • Built from sturdy iron and steel
  • Purchasing it gives you 18 months warranty

Cons

  • For some purchasers, the packaging has had some misleading information – be sure to check the specifications before buying

Verdict

For its price, Vastar full set 60 W 110 V Soldering iron kit will be ideal if you don’t want to spend so much on a soldering iron. This reflects in the low quality of some of the accessories that will come with it. Though cheap, your accessories might not last that long since you get what you pay for.

 

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Avoid investing in these two soldering irons

1. Trisonic soldering iron

Best soldering ironSave your money by not considering this soldering iron. It not only gives you 40 W which limits what you solder, but can also harm you as it melts easily. Unlike other soldering iron, this does not heat up making it impossible to use. Manufactured from cheap plastic, it falls apart with just the first few trials. Fitted with screws that don’t work, you will find it next to impossible to try and use it to solder even the simplest of machines.

It is therefore considered a dangerous soldering iron that can actually harm your fingers. The first use may leave you with smoke emitting from its handles since the wires inside the plastic handle cannot withstand electric current. Don’t let its low price blind you because cheap is expensive.

2. SE PN32UL 60w soldering iron

Best soldering ironThis is also a soldering iron that you shouldn’t consider because it doesn’t heat up as expected. Unlike other 60 W soldering irons that heat up quickly, this one does not perform at all. Constructed poorly, it will not go a week without showing signs of wear and tear.

Its variable dial does not work and the soldering iron does not maintain a constant temperature that you can work with. Rated 2 in 5 stars, this should tell you that it is not worth investing in. Most people who buy it don’t even feel the need to return the product as it is not only a waste of their money but also time. With so many other options that come in great features, stay away from SE PN32UL 60W soldering iron.

 

 

Buyer’s guide

Whether you need a soldering iron for your home appliances or you are a professional electrician looking for the best soldering iron there is in the market, the following factors will guide you:

Cords

A cordless soldering iron makes it easy for you to move as opposed to one that relies on a cord. It is better not to restrict yourself to only solder from home since many appliances can be repaired even without relying on electricity to solder.

Temperature regulation

While some soldering irons contain thermostats that regulates temperature required for particular jobs, others contain variable power controls. Choosing a soldering iron that automatically turns the set temperature down when it reaches its limit, will help you solder without risks of burning your appliances.

Tips

You may ignore the purpose of the tip on the best soldering iron but this works hand in hand to determine how quickly your iron heats up. Wondering why the tip is so crucial? In the process of soldering, heat finds its way from the tip to the joint. A connector for instance requires a thick tip while a fine pitched component works well with a thin tip.

Different soldering iron come with tips that you can interchange varying in their shapes and sizes. Some of the tips used include tapered, chisel and pyramid. Going for copper and nickel tips improves durability when working on a certain job.

Wattage

If you are a beginner in soldering irons, it is advisable to not choose one with very high wattage so that you don’t burn electronics. Professional electricians on the other hand who are more used to soldering irons go for high wattage in order to perform complex tasks that require more power.

Brand

Choosing a well-recognized and vastly used brand will give you better service than one which has not created a reputable name for itself in the market. Do your research well before settling for any soldering iron and go through different reviews to know what most users like and which brand rates the highest so that you can get the best for soldering.

Another important factor

Price

Coming up with a budget will help you not overspend on a soldering iron. As you choose a good brand, the price should be something you can work with in order to avoid disappointments while choosing the most expensive soldering iron only to find some default. As you consider all other factors, do not choose a very cheap or too expensive soldering iron but get a discounted reasonable price that you can work with.

 

Final thoughts

Thanks to the manufacture and provisions of affordable soldering irons you can now choose one that works best for a particular purpose. The list of soldering irons discussed above will guide you to make the right choice. Consider all the discussed features, merits and demerits of each model, as well as different factors so that you can leave a positive review and probably help a friend who is stuck with a poorly made soldering iron.