How Do You Link Balloons to BOM SolidWorks?

In this tutorial, we will learn how to link balloons to BOM (Bill of Materials) in SolidWorks. Balloons are a powerful tool in SolidWorks that help us identify and label components in an assembly. By linking balloons to the BOM, we can automatically update the balloon numbers as we add or remove components from our assembly.

Step 1: Creating a Bill of Materials

To start, let’s create a Bill of Materials (BOM) for our assembly. In SolidWorks, go to the Insert menu and select Tables, then choose Bills of Materials. This will open the BOM PropertyManager dialog box.

Note: If you already have a BOM created, you can skip this step.

Step 2: Placing Balloons

Once we have our BOM ready, it’s time to place balloons on our assembly components. To do this, go to the Annotations tab and click on the Balloons dropdown menu. Select either Balloons by Selection Order or Balloons by Assembly Order, depending on your preference.

Note: Balloons by Selection Order will assign numbers based on the order in which you select components. Balloons by Assembly Order will assign numbers based on their position in the FeatureManager design tree.

Placing Balloons Manually

If you prefer more control over balloon placement, you can manually add each balloon one by one. To do this, click on the Add Balloon button in the Balloons PropertyManager dialog box.

Then, click on the component you want to add a balloon to. Repeat this process for each component in your assembly.

Placing Balloons Automatically

If you have a large assembly with many components, manually placing balloons can be time-consuming. Luckily, SolidWorks provides an automated method to place balloons.

To use this feature, click on the Auto Balloon button in the Balloons PropertyManager dialog box. SolidWorks will automatically add balloons to all the components in your assembly.

Step 3: Linking Balloons to BOM

Now that we have our BOM and balloons ready, let’s link them together. Right-click on the BOM in the FeatureManager design tree and select Edit BOM. In the BOM PropertyManager dialog box, check the Show balloon numbers in front of items option.

Note: If you want to display additional information such as item numbers or quantities in your BOM, you can customize these options as well.

Once you have made your selections, click on OK. The balloon numbers will now appear in front of each item in the BOM.

Step 4: Updating Balloon Numbers

If you make any changes to your assembly such as adding or removing components, you can easily update the balloon numbers. Right-click on the BOM and select Edit BOM. In the BOM PropertyManager dialog box, click on Update Balloons.

  • Note: You can also update balloons by right-clicking on a balloon and selecting Balloons > Update.
  • Note: If you have deleted a component with a balloon, SolidWorks will automatically renumber the remaining balloons.

After updating the balloons, your BOM and assembly will be synchronized, and the balloon numbers will reflect any changes you made.


In this tutorial, we have learned how to link balloons to BOM in SolidWorks. By following these steps, you can efficiently label and identify components in your assembly.

Remember to update the balloons whenever you make changes to keep your BOM accurate. With this knowledge, you can now create clear and organized documentation for your SolidWorks projects.