The Best Soldering Irons for 2023

Assemble, hack, and fix electronics with ease using these efficient soldering irons.

Soldering is one of the oldest and simplest forms of joining materials together using heat. It is also one of the most important processes in electronics production because it allows for the manufacture of electronic components such as resistors, capacitors, and inductors.

A soldering iron is an essential requirement for any electronics enthusiast. It is common in electronics repairs and fabrication and can be used with a variety of metals but is most often used to solder copper, nickel, and tin-based alloys. A soldering iron consists of an electrically-heated tip that is attached to a handle. The tip of the iron has a pointy end that allows precision soldering.

While soldering irons are great tools, using the wrong ones can subject you to electrical burns, poor heating, fire hazards, and mid-use breakdown. If you have experienced any of these unfortunate events, you need to replace your soldering iron with a better one. This is where our top selections come in!

How We Picked

  • Temperature Control

    If you want to ensure that your iron stays at the proper temperature throughout your work day, then consider investing in one that has an adjustable temperature setting. It will enable you to make adjustments depending on what kind of material or metal you are working with.

  • Power/Wattage

    The power rating of a soldering iron refers to its maximum wattage output (how much heat is transferred from its tip to a component). A higher-wattage soldering iron will transfer more heat than a lower-wattage model, which means that you can use less heat with a high-wattage tool.

  • Safety Features

    The safety features of good soldering irons help to prevent injuries and fires. Such safety features include an insulated tip and a non-slip grip on the handle.

  • Cost-Effectiveness

    A good soldering iron fulfills its promise of efficiency while being affordable. In view of this, we chose soldering irons that have a high-quality build, long-lasting life span, and warranty to help you get your money’s worth.

Our Top Picks

Best Pick

Hakko FX-888D

The Hakko electronics company did not disappoint with this sturdy soldering iron.

With a temperature range of over 899°F, the Hakko FX-888D soldering iron brings perfection to every soldering project. It is widely recognized and highly rated online as the best soldering tool in terms of power and overall performance. The Hakko FX-888D stands out with a smooth and lightweight handpiece that gives mobility and comfort with ease. It also has a ceramic heating build that provides the power needed to get the job done.

Buy Now for $115.40

This soldering tool perfectly understands the assignment with its efficiency and longevity.

Runner Up

X-Tronic Model 3020-XTS LED Soldering Station

Our second favorite, this soldering station is a solid heating beast!

This X-Tronic soldering station is power-packed and is sure to exceed your power and quality expectations. The soldering iron in this unit boasts sturdy stainless steel and an easy-to-use ergonomic heat-resistant silicone handle. With a temperature range of 392°F to 896°F, the soldering iron features a speedy heating process of fewer than 30 seconds.

Buy Now for $54.75

One of Amazon's favorites, this soldering station combines versatility and power.

Most cost-effective

Vastar 60W, 110V Soldering Iron Kit

The perfect blend of affordability, easy accessibility, and great quality, this soldering kit is a go-to for beginners and experts.

Very popular on the market, the soldering iron in this kit is the star of Vastar's show. It is famously used for home appliance maintenance, computer parts repair, and circuit board welding. It is popular among electrical students, welders, electricians, and DIY hobbyists. The soldering iron is loved for its adjustable temperature setting and jaw-dropping heating duration of 15 seconds!

Buy Now for $15.77

Affordability doesn't stop this kit from being one of the most reliable soldering tools on the market.

Almost made the cut

Weller WE1010NA

A professional tool in the soldering game, the Weller WE1010NA soldering iron is the big gun in large-scale welding and electrical environments.

It has cutting-edge technological features such as password protection, intuitive navigation, standby mode, and auto setback energy conservation. This soldering iron tells of its power with its rather steep price range. It is easy to handle with the help of its heat-resistant silicone cable and handle. Its temperature settings include lock protection tips and components that inevitably ensure consistent top-notch soldering results.

Buy Now for $104.99

Providing high capability, this soldering iron is made with the best quality materials.

Everything We Recommend

Best Pick

Hakko FX-888D

The Hakko electronics company did not disappoint with this sturdy soldering iron.

$115.40

Buy Now

Runner Up

X-Tronic Model 3020-XTS LED Soldering Station

Our second favorite, this soldering station is a solid heating beast!

$54.75

Buy Now

Most cost-effective

Vastar 60W, 110V Soldering Iron Kit

The perfect blend of affordability, easy accessibility, and great quality, this soldering kit is a go-to for beginners and experts.

$15.77

Buy Now

Almost made the cut

Weller WE1010NA

A professional tool in the soldering game, the Weller WE1010NA soldering iron is the big gun in large-scale welding and electrical environments.

$104.99

Buy Now

Who This Is For

The soldering irons featured here are for anyone who wants to solder their own electronics. They are commonly used by hobbyists and DIY enthusiasts, but they’re also useful for professionals who need to make repairs on electronic devices.

What is a Soldering Iron Used For?
Soldering irons provide three main functions: melting, heating, and soldering. The first function is achieved by heating the workpiece with a high-temperature flame; this melts the solder so that it can flow onto the object being joined together. The second function is achieved by depositing molten solder onto any gap within an item being joined together allowing it to be attached permanently via direct contact with its surface or through direct contact with another item (such as when attaching wires). Finally, soldering allows for electrical connections between two surfaces that may not directly touch each other depending on how close they sit together when placed within proximity.

Is Using a Soldering Iron Safe?
Soldering irons can be dangerous, especially if you’re not careful. However, they can be safe to use if proper safety measures are applied. The good news is that safety measures while soldering do not have to be complicated. Easy safety tips such as using a solder stick instead of touching the iron directly with your fingers, never leaving the soldering iron unattended while in use, making sure there is no water on the tip of the iron before using it, and always turning off the soldering iron after use, and unplugging it from the power source before removing or inserting any components into it can go a long way in preventing electrical hazards.

Why You Should Trust Us

With the variety of options on the market, numerous soldering irons have been reviewed to be great, durable, or powerful. However, most of these reviews are false. By carrying out in-depth research, committed testing, and including transparency in the results we have relayed to you, we are confident that our curated picks are the best and can stand the test of time.

How We Picked

A soldering iron is an important part of your electrical toolkit, and choosing the best soldering iron for your needs can be a daunting task. The features that make up a good soldering iron can vary from model to model, but there are a few key factors to consider when shopping for one.

 

Temperature Controls

The best soldering irons have varying temperature controls for different soldering tasks. Having this kind of flexibility allows you to choose how hot you need your soldering iron to get so that you can achieve proper results.

 

Power

This feature determines the energy flowing in and out of the soldering iron, and the overall strength of the soldering iron. You’ll want to choose an iron that has enough power to complete whatever task you’re trying to accomplish at a reasonable pace without causing damage or overheating.

 

Wattage

To determine the best soldering iron for you, you will need to consider its wattage. The high-wattage soldering irons can be used for heavy-duty work such as making connections between electronic devices or metal components that are difficult to solder otherwise. This type of work requires a high-wattage soldering iron because it is not easy to apply enough heat in small areas with low-power tools like screwdrivers and pliers. The low-wattage soldering irons are more suited for lighter jobs such as making connections between electronic devices or metal components that are easy to solder with small tools like screwdrivers and pliers.

 

Safety Features

The hazard-preventive features that good soldering irons provide can help prevent burns and other electrical injuries. Some soldering irons come with safety tips and handles that help to prevent burns and certain electrical-induced injuries. Other extremely high-end ones have built-in fire-extinguishing technology to help you fight flames when a fire emergency occurs while you’re at work.

 

Price vs Quality

This feature helps you to figure out which soldering irons are worth your money. If a product costs too much due to its high-quality build, then it might ruin your budget. At the same time, a cheap soldering iron might not last very long or work as well as a high-quality expensive one. Analyzing the quality of soldering irons while considering each one’s price is crucial to ensure that you make the best buy.

 

Size

There are different sizes of soldering irons available, and each one has different uses depending on what kind of work you’re doing with it. The size of the soldering iron is important because it dictates how much current the solder will be able to flow through it. The larger the current, the more heat will be generated, which means that you can create stronger connections between pieces of metal with less effort on your part. A large soldering iron will generally produce greater contact with the metal being joined than a smaller one would, which means that it will be able to join larger amounts of metal faster.

 

Durability

This factor determines the number of times you can use your soldering iron before it begins to let up or stop working. A good soldering iron holds up better than one that isn’t well-made, maintaining its major and additional features.

 

Heat-resistant Handle

Soldering irons get very hot which is why they need to have heat-resistant handles. These unique handles help prevent your fingers from getting burned by high temperatures, ultimately ensuring stress-free, hazard-free soldering. 

 

Easy to Use

You need to be able to quickly and easily use your soldering iron without having to struggle with it or read incomprehensible instructions on its working mechanism.

 

Easy to Clean

Soldering is a messy activity, so the soldering iron of your choice must be easy to clean. Poor ease of cleaning can lead to constant overheating, iron rust, and eventual damage.

Our Picks For You

Best Pick - Hakko FX-888D

Best Pick

Hakko FX-888D

The Hakko electronics company did not disappoint with this sturdy soldering iron.

With a temperature range of over 899°F, the Hakko FX-888D soldering iron brings perfection to every soldering project. It is widely recognized and highly rated online as the best soldering tool in terms of power and overall performance. The Hakko FX-888D stands out with a smooth and lightweight handpiece that gives mobility and comfort with ease. It also has a ceramic heating build that provides the power needed to get the job done.

Buy Now for $115.40

Who it is for

This soldering iron is a great tool for different types of people and professions. It can be used by anyone who is working with metal, whether for artistic purposes or repair work or even manufacturing. This includes artists, designers, carpenters, mechanics, engineers, and jewelers.

Why it is great

The Hakko FX-888D soldering iron is a high-performance, professional tool that can be used for soldering, brazing, and fabrication. It has a 70-Watt ceramic heating element that heats up quickly. The handle is sturdy and lightweight, increasing its ease of use. The base has a heat sink, which dissipates heat away from the tool's tip and helps it retain heat longer. This tool also comes with a built-in temperature indicator.

Potential flaws

Although this high-grade soldering iron boasts an outstanding average Amazon rating of 4.9 stars out of five praising its great temperature control, speedy heat-up process, and high-quality overall build, a few previous users complained that it gets weak after three to five consecutive uses. The Hakko customer service was also reviewed to be poor and unresponsive especially when customers make complaints about the functioning of the soldering iron or request a replacement.

Other features

Weighing 2.6 pounds, the Hakko FX-888D soldering iron is a reliable soldering and welding tool by the award-winning Japanese electronics company, Hakko. It has a capacity of 120 Volts and 70 Watts. This blue and yellow soldering tool features a compact yet stylish station, a lightweight ergonomic heat-resistant handpiece, an iron stand that includes a sponge and cleaning wire, a ceramic heating sensor, and five preset temperatures stored and displayed by the station. It is ESD-safe, versatile, and accommodates a variety of soldering tips. The soldering iron heats up within 20 seconds. Unlike most soldering irons that become hotter by the minute when plugged, The temperature of the Hakko FX-888D reduces during usage to prevent burn hazards.

Runner Up - X-Tronic Model 3020-XTS LED Soldering Station

Runner Up

X-Tronic Model 3020-XTS LED Soldering Station

Our second favorite, this soldering station is a solid heating beast!

This X-Tronic soldering station is power-packed and is sure to exceed your power and quality expectations. The soldering iron in this unit boasts sturdy stainless steel and an easy-to-use ergonomic heat-resistant silicone handle. With a temperature range of 392°F to 896°F, the soldering iron features a speedy heating process of fewer than 30 seconds.

Buy Now for $54.75

Who it is for

The X-Tronic Model 3020-XTS LED soldering station is essential to any DIY electronic enthusiast's kit, and it can be used by just about anyone.

Why it is great

For starters, the temperature range is adjustable, which makes it ideal for soldering all kinds of metals. The tip can also be replaced with an extra-long one if you need to get into more difficult areas of your project. The large surface area of the heating element provides for even heat distribution across your workpiece, which means that you'll be able to complete your projects faster and with less chance of accidentally burning yourself.

Potential flaws

Previous users of this soldering iron reviewed its service on Amazon. Some customers noted that it is poorly constructed, its temperature often fluctuates wildly, it possesses bad quality control, it doesn't enter or exit sleep mode predictably or seamlessly, and it has unimpressive X-Tronic customer service. Some customers also questioned its durability, warranty, and 75-Wattage heating power.

Other features

Manufactured by X-Tronic, the 3020-XTS model includes a 75-Watt soldering station (which comprises a 60-Watt soldering iron and a 15-Watt mini motherboard in the soldering iron), a side-mounted roll holder, a silicone tool mat, two detachable corded helping hands, a brass tip-cleaning sponge, and a cleaning flux. Similar to our top pick (Hakko FX-888D), the X-Tronic Model 3020-XTS Soldering Station is ESD-safe.

In addition, it has a Proportional-Integral-Derivative (PID) heating technology, an anti-static design, a 10-minute sleep timer, a toggle switch that converts the temperature from Centigrade to Fahrenheit, and a bright blue LED light that glows on the temperature display for easy deciphering of the temperature indication. The soldering iron features a 40-inch pliable soldering cord and a 55-inch power cord that connects the wall plug to the main soldering unit.

Most cost-effective - Vastar 60W, 110V Soldering Iron Kit

Most cost-effective

Vastar 60W, 110V Soldering Iron Kit

The perfect blend of affordability, easy accessibility, and great quality, this soldering kit is a go-to for beginners and experts.

Very popular on the market, the soldering iron in this kit is the star of Vastar's show. It is famously used for home appliance maintenance, computer parts repair, and circuit board welding. It is popular among electrical students, welders, electricians, and DIY hobbyists. The soldering iron is loved for its adjustable temperature setting and jaw-dropping heating duration of 15 seconds!

Buy Now for $15.77

Who it is for

The soldering tool in this kit can be used by anyone who has a basic understanding of electronics, but they are especially useful for people who work with computers and other devices that require soldering. It can also help in the repair of broken or damaged electronic components or boards. If you are looking to get into electronics repair, this affordable yet dependable soldering kit includes everything you need

Why it is great

This soldering iron is ideal for repairing electronics like computers, printers, and game consoles. Instead of having to pay for expensive repairs or buy new parts, you can fix your electronics with this soldering iron. The solder is made of solid tin and lead, so it doesn't get clogged up as easily as other metals do. It comes with built-in temperature settings that allow you to decide how hot you would like the tip of your soldering iron to be for the task at hand.

Potential flaws

With an average Amazon rating of 4.5 stars out of five, this soldering iron was all that most previous customers dreamed it would be. However, some reviewers had a few flaws to point out, including its suspicious heat control feature, unstable heat-up process, failed UL testing, and poorly-durable soldering tips that go bad after one or two consecutive uses. The rubber on the gun handle has also been reviewed to be made with low quality as it slightly melts after the first use. The spring iron cannot get above 300°F even with the temperature control claim to be maxed out to 450F.

Product specifications

Weighing 0.55 pounds, the blue Vastar soldering set is our cheapest selection, but it doesn't disappoint in power and overall performance. It comes with more accessories than our other picks — including five different tip sizes — and has the highest maximum heat. It features a heat-up duration of one minute and 23 seconds, a working Voltage of 110 Volts, a power capacity of 60 Watts, a steel-pipe design for heat dissipation, a control knob with few temperature settings, and a comfortable handle. The solder in the kit comes in a pen-shaped tube. The solder is easy to hold and equally easy to apply to a circuit board. It is made with 60% tin metal and 40% lead. The soldering stand in this set is a barely-sturdy Y-shaped piece of metal that helps to hold the soldering iron and keep the tip off the table.

Almost made the cut - Weller WE1010NA

Almost made the cut

Weller WE1010NA

A professional tool in the soldering game, the Weller WE1010NA soldering iron is the big gun in large-scale welding and electrical environments.

It has cutting-edge technological features such as password protection, intuitive navigation, standby mode, and auto setback energy conservation. This soldering iron tells of its power with its rather steep price range. It is easy to handle with the help of its heat-resistant silicone cable and handle. Its temperature settings include lock protection tips and components that inevitably ensure consistent top-notch soldering results.

Buy Now for $104.99

Why it is for

This high-end soldering iron can be owned by anyone who needs to solder. It is especially useful for those who professionally work with electronics and other types of mechanical devices because of its high cost. It is commonly used in industrial settings where high temperatures and a low tolerance for error are required.

Why it is great

The Weller WE1010NA is one of the best pricy soldering irons on the market, and it is easy to see why. It has a durable design that makes it perfect for on-the-go use, and it comes with a handy carrying case that keeps your tools in good shape when they are not in use. This particular model is part of Weller's "pro" line of soldering irons, so you know you're getting a high-quality tool that will last for years. The tip of the soldering iron is made from nickel alloy, which means it is very strong but also highly resistant to corrosion. The temperature control dial allows you to set the temperature at which your iron works.

Potential flaws

This soldering iron lacks customer support and sometimes stays stuck in sleep mode. The display flickers, showing a wild jump from the set temperature to higher temperatures and all other points between even though the heat seems stable at the tip. Occasionally, the iron fails to reach a temperature higher than 134°F. After two months of steady use, the pen has a high chance of breaking with the metal part becoming loose. Its price is a huge margin away from the cost of our other selections, reducing its chances of cost-effectiveness. Because of this, we had to strike it out of our list of top picks.

Product specifications

This pastel aqua and black 70-Watt soldering station has an easy-to-read LCD screen that displays temperature, three push buttons for temperature control, intuitive navigation through the new SW features, and a front switch for switching the iron on or off. The soldering iron is pencil-like, has a co-molded grip, and is very lightweight. The stand holds the solder securely in place between every use. The best part is that you can choose from a varied selection of high-quality, durable, and easy-to-change ET tips.

Care and maintenance

If you’ve ever soldered a wire and got frustrated with a clogged or ruined tip, you know how important it is to keep your iron clean. As a result of frequent use, the solder on the tip of your soldering iron can become clogged with dust and gunk, which can cause the iron to heat unevenly or not at all. Luckily, cleaning a soldering iron is easy, and here’s how!

First, unplug the soldering iron and let it cool completely. Remove the tip from the iron by unscrewing it. Be careful not to touch the hot metal while doing this. Then, brush off any excess solder or flux that has accumulated on it. This should be enough to get rid of most of the residue, but if not, use a wet sponge or wire brush to tackle any stubborn spots. Next, dip the tip in water and swish through it with your fingers until it is completely free of any solder buildup. You can also use a toothbrush to scrub away any remaining particles before reinserting them into your soldering iron. Finally, wipe down the tip with an alcohol-soaked cloth until it is clean and dry!

How often you clean your soldering iron depends on how often you use it. If as a professional jeweler, mechanic, or engineer, your soldering iron is used every day, you must clean it at least twice a week to get rid of the daily gunk. On the other hand, if your soldering iron is used rarely for DIY projects and simple in-house soldering, you can consider cleaning your soldering iron before each use.

Like any other tool, soldering irons need to be handled with care. Always use a soldering iron stand when working with the tool. This will help keep the tip of your iron safely away from combustible materials. Make sure your iron is clean before using it on your project — this will help prevent overheating and reduce the risk of injury or damage. Never leave a hot soldering iron unattended while working on projects. Keep your soldering iron away from children and other inexperienced people. Always unplug the iron from the power source before touching it or removing the tip from its holder. This will prevent accidental contact with other parts of the soldering iron or its tip holder, which could cause an electrical shock. Wear heat-resistant gloves and eye protection (good quality goggles). Rubber work gloves are a good choice because they will protect your hands from both heat and melted solder. Finally, if your soldering iron is faulty or broken, get it fixed before its next use or replace it with a new one.

The most common problem that people encounter when using a soldering iron is that the iron gets clogged with solder. You can remedy this by removing the debris (like rust and iron particles) with a ball of steel wool after every use. Steel wool is a woolen ball that is made up of alloys that are unreactive to a soldering iron. Turn the soldering iron off, wait for it to cool, then dampen the steel wool slightly, and scrub the soldering iron’s tip with the steel wool until you have gotten rid of all the debris buildup. Don’t dispose of the debris by throwing the particles in the trash. Instead, dedicate a trash can for the soldering debris and have the local or community electronic waste company pick the trash up periodically.