Asked by: Milagritos Ibarrekolanda
home and garden indoor environmental quality

Which side of electrolytic capacitor is positive?

Last Updated: 23rd April, 2020

The negative pin of the cap is usually indicated by a"-" marking, and/or a colored strip along the can. They might alsohave a longer positive leg. Below are 10µF (left) anda 1mF electrolytic capacitors, each of which has a dashsymbol to mark the negative leg, as well as a longerpositive leg.

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People also ask, which direction does a capacitor go?

Yes. When a capacitor is charging, current flowstowards the positive plate (as positive charge is added to thatplate) and away from the negative plate. When the capacitoris discharging, current flows away from the positive and towardsthe negative plate, in the opposite direction.

Additionally, what happens if you connect an electrolytic capacitor backwards? Voltages with reverse polarity, or voltage orripple current higher than specified can destroy thedielectric and the capacitor. The destruction ofelectrolytic capacitors can have catastrophic consequencessuch as a fire or an explosion.

Likewise, does it matter which way a capacitor is wired?

If by conduct you mean exchange electrons from oneside to the other, then yes capacitors can "conduct"on both sides because AC current goes in both directions but for DCthey don't "conduct" at all! Some capacitors, but not all,are unpolarised. meaning they work the same no matter whichway around you connect them.

How long does a capacitor last?

Most are designed to last approximately 20 years,but a number of factors can cause them to wear out more quickly. Ifyour air conditioner cycles much more rapidly than average, yourcapacitor is undersized (as mentioned above) or it's builtfrom problematic parts, and the estimated life span may be greatlyreduced.

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