In a PCB I've been developing, I included a micro USB connector. The problem is that when I plug in and out cables on it, seems to get weaker and weaker and needs to be resoldered, even the pins on the center seem to give some problems.

Is there something I can do on this board that can improve it or another type of connector? Anyone had problems with it?

enter image description here enter image description here

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    \$\begingroup\$ Unless your case can provide some mechanical support, the vertical mount really isn't going to work. You may need to swap to a different mounting style. \$\endgroup\$
    – hekete
    Commented Jun 28, 2019 at 6:54
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Please edit your question and add a link to the datasheet for your particular USB jack. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 28, 2019 at 18:04

5 Answers 5


enter image description here (https://gct.co/usb-connector/micro-usb-connector-overview)

Micro USB has its flaws.
Phone manufacturers often use mid-mount USB sockets for best mechanical strength.
Any vertical version will have the drawback of the length of the plug acting as lever on the joints. You will definitely need additional mechanical support by the enclosure on these.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Lack of mechanical strain relief is the issue here; you beat me to it by seconds. \$\endgroup\$
    – MarkU
    Commented Jun 28, 2019 at 6:33

Why don't you take a plug that lies flat on the PCB? That's how I've seen it on every PCB so far.

enter image description here

e.g. https://www.mouser.com/datasheet/2/185/CX_catalog-1488784.pdf


In addition to Daniel K's suggestion for a horizontal-mount connector, you should also consider the mechanical benefits of through hole (THT) components. I've had issues with SMT-only horizontal USB connectors pulling up from the board and ripping the traces themselves.

A good compromise can be a combination of SMT pins for the USB connections with THT mounting points for the connector body, which I've found provides a lot of help with mechanical strength. enter image description here


Generally, surface mount solder joints alone shouldn't be relied on for mechanical support of connectors* with significant mating cycles or non-trivial mass. This is especially true for vertical style connectors as shown in your image, where you can easily get a lot of leverage on the connector body and snap the part off the board.

*Small embedded connectors that are not user accessible are a different story.


You can use hot melt glue or a neutral cure silicone rubber to give mechanical support to the connector. Usually board components are glued like this for enduring long term vibration, but it should help with mechanical support. There are also some special connectors with larger snap tabs on the ground pins, but i'm not sure if they make them like that for micro USB.

See here for more info about the different adhesives. Just be careful not to get the adhesive inside of the connector.

Another option is to have an adapter cable, like a M to F cable, and always leave it plugged in to the board for development so that it is less wear on the board components and instead wears on the cable's connector instead.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I doubt anything rubbery would help much with this issue. The point of rubber is that it absorbs impacts by giving way – great for damping vibrations, but in this case you can't have it giving way because at that point the solder joints would already be done for. Hot glue doesn't have this problem; it's also not the greatest in terms of mechanical stability but can be a sensible choice here. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jun 28, 2019 at 16:16

Does it have to be micro USB? They are notorious for their fragility and getting dirty really easy. USB type B is much sturdier and if space/height isn't an concern (you have Ethernet on board?) its much better idea than flimsy micro USB.


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