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Which Arm Should Wristbands Be Worn On?

Which wrist you decide to wear your anti static wrist strap on is often a matter of personal preference. 

If you have the grounding point for the wrist strap cord on your left you may find wearing the wrist strap on your left makes the most sense.  That way the cord isn’t dragging across your work. 

However, you may find that it is better for you to move the grounding point to your right and then wear the wrist strap on your right hand.

How Often Should An Anti Static Wrist Strap Be Replaced?

There is no specific rule on a lifespan of a wrist strap. Any company policies should be followed on replacements but a good general rule of thumb is to look at the overall use, possible wear and cleanliness of your individual wrist strap.

Often companies determine a guideline on replacing them annually, semi-annually or quarterly. 

This small change can often feel good for those that use a wrist strap daily and especially those who share a wrist strap at a common workbench or workstation.

It can be a small investment in employee satisfaction to have an upgrade to the tools and equipment on a regular basis.  Replacing a wrist strap can be a small but strong signal from management that the company cares about proper ESD procedures.

Why Use An Anti Static Wristband?

The goal of using ESD wrist straps is to safely provide a way for static electricity to dissipate without causing electrostatic damage. The less ESD events that occur the better. An ESD protected work environment will enhance safety which helps to increase efficiency and production. While ESD wrist straps are highly effective pieces of equipment, it’s always best to support safety initiatives with the addition of ESD mats and other essential supplies. Short-term investments in high-quality ESD gear will pay off in the long-term.

Operators should use an anti static wristband to ensure any static discharge has a way to go from themselves to the ground safely. Without wearing a wristband whilst working on a static sensitive device/component you could effectively transfer static discharge onto the item and cause significant damage. This can be very costly to replace and time-consuming.

By wearing a wrist strap, you are not only taking an important step to prevent ESD from inflicting damage but you are also setting an example to your peers and managers.

How Do ESD Wristbands Work?

ESD wrist straps come in a variety of materials, but the general concept for each is the same; to provide a path for electrostatic ground.

For an ESD control wrist strap to work, it is either connected to earth bonding points fitted into workstations, typically via 10 mm press studs, or come with a removable coiled cord and crocodile clip for mobile applications.

The strap is fastened around your wrist using an adjustable band. The wristband should be worn snug to the skin with its coil cord connected to a common point ground which is connected to ground, preferably equipment ground. Typically, the alligator clip is attached to the computer or sensitive electronic device being worked on.

An anti static strap must be connected to a grounding source like a bonding plug in conjunction with a ground lead in order for them to be effective.

Once an ESD wrist strap has been secured to the wrist and connected to the earth bonding point or sensitive piece of equipment, you are safe to work without fear of ESD occurring. This allows you and your workforce to go about your daily tasks freely and drastically reduces the chances of static electricity building up.

Working on PCB Bondline Vinyl Bench Matting Workstation | Bondline Electronics Ltd

Are Wrist Straps Necessary If All Other ESD Precautions Are Taken?

Wrist straps are not necessary if an operator is wearing two-foot grounders on a conductive grounded floor and doesn’t lift both heels/toes at the same time; like some people do when sitting down. If an operator is also wearing an ESD jacket but is not electrically connecting the jacket to either their body’s skin or ground, then the jacket is providing only partial protection.

Charges on the jacket may have nowhere to go or discharge to if the jacket is not grounded. A popular way to ground the jacket is with a coil cord either attached to a snap on the waist area of the jacket or via a wrist strap snapped to the inside cuff of an ESD jacket.

Click here to view our full range of ESD wrist straps.

ESD Wrist Strap

How do I apply a disposable heel strap?

When applying a disposable heel strap, you should apply the strap within a static-controlled environment.

Step 1) Align the pressure-sensitive end of products with the front edge and centre of shoe heel.

Step 2) Peel the protective liner and mount the device. Press it firmly to the bottom of the heel.

Step 3) Wrap the contact ribbon of the heel grounder up the back of the shoe and lay it inside.

Step 4) Step into the shoe.

Step 5) Repeat steps one to four on the other shoe.

disposable heel strap

When wearing a heel strap, does the strap need to make direct contact with the skin?

When wearing heel straps/foot grounders in an ESD Protected Area, it is recommended that the conductive ribbon should make direct contact with the skin for maximum effectiveness. However, a conductive ribbon may be placed inside a wearer’s shoe underneath their sock to make electrical contact with the skin through perspiration. If the wearer chooses to place the ribbon underneath their sock, there are a few key factors you should consider. Socks can have varying material composition and thickness. Despite this, as long as the wearer’s feet are producing a sufficient sweat layer, it will make their socks conduct providing a conductive layer between each foot (skin) and grounding ribbon. Before handling electronic static-sensitive devices, ensure you allow enough time to develop a good layer of sweat in order to make the sock conductive enough to effectively bond the skin to the ribbon. You can check the continuity of the foot grounder via a footwear tester. If you would prefer to wear ESD shoes then please view our range here.

ESD shoes

Do I need to wear heel grounders on both feet?

Yes, in accordance with IEWC 61340-5-1 ESD footwear must be worn on both feet.

View our range of foot grounding products here.

Or, see our bestselling foot grounding product below.

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