Testing Electrolytic cap's

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Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by frank1956 on Mon Sep 22, 2014 9:47 am

Hi All,
Was wondering how to test electrolytic cap's before they are installed?

Thanks
Frank
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Re: Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by 75X11 on Mon Sep 22, 2014 6:24 pm

I usually just do a cursory test for charge and discharge with an analog meter, setting the resistance to the point it will allow a relatively slow rise of the meter and a corresponding fall when the leads are reversed.
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Re: Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by jerryhawthorne on Mon Sep 22, 2014 6:30 pm

Frank, if they are new, I don't test them.  If they are vintage, listen to the sound when you drop them into an empty metal trash can, if they make noise when they hit the bottom, they are bad. Twisted Evil
I don't have a cap tester but a VOM on the high resistance scale with + to + and - to - should show a dip to low resistance and slowly go up to the meg value as the cap charges from the VOM voltage.  Certainly not the best test and won't test HV leakage.
Jerry

Sorry 75, we were posting at the same time!

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Re: Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by Guest on Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:40 pm

I do the same as 75X11! I also do the same as Jerry with Vintage caps! Wink

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Re: Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by Dr. Radio on Mon Sep 22, 2014 9:31 pm

Above is good advice.

Frank, unless you have "real" equipment, forget about it. You'd need a cap checker that has variable voltage output to test the dielectric strength for leakage and a high quality ESR meter to determine if dielectric heating may take place later on.

In my opinion, trying to "reform" caps with a trickle current supply is an absolute joke. Why would anyone trust a chemical composition that is several decades old that has high voltage across it and apart of something much greater (and sometimes very valuable)?

Stick with fresh, name brand caps and it's a non issue.

I, myself, only trust two manufacturers for restoration and custom projects/prototypes; Nichicon and Mashusita (Panasonic). I have had years of work to back those two up, and the companies have had decades of experience. "The proof is in the pudding".
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Re: Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by Wildcat445 on Mon Sep 22, 2014 10:10 pm

I agree. Good advice here, Frank. Good luck.

WC

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Re: Testing Electrolytic cap's

Post by frank1956 on Thu Sep 25, 2014 12:23 pm

Thanks everyone.
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