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In many cases, the useful life of a product depends on the life span of its electrolytic capacitors.
Various types of electrolytic capacitors with different Lo and rated temperatures are used, and the useful life varies depending on these characteristics.
For details, check the Electrolytic Capacitor Lifetime in the reliability data on the technical data pages for each product on the product information website (TDK Product Center).
(For fan-embedded products, check the Electrolytic Capacitor Lifetime and Fan Life Expectancy.)
The useful life of an electrolytic capacitor is generally controlled by a phenomenon whereby the electrolyte evaporates to the outside of the product through a seal. The pace of evaporation depends on the temperature. The Arrhenius equation (the rate doubles for each 10°C increase in temperature) is presented as a representative example of a formula used for calculating the estimated useful life of electrolytic capacitors.
The Electrolytic Capacitor Lifetime in the reliability data indicates the useful life calculated according to the Arrhenius equation assuming use for 24 hours per day, and therefore, the actual useful life may differ depending on the operational status of the customer’s device.
Even in cases where a longer useful life is projected as a result of shorter operating times or lower temperature, however, it is necessary to take into consideration degradation of the electrolytic capacitor seal rubber. It is generally said that it takes 15 years for the seal rubber to degrade.