[AMRadio] Freezing electrolytics and other stuff

Jim Candela jcandela at prodigy.net
Sun Jan 3 18:22:23 EST 2016

Might also consider the effect from extreme cold on LCD displays, and memory hold up batteries. I have a HP 8591A spectrum analyzer with a 3 volt battery which holds all the calibrations and config. I'd worry about that battery if it stayed sub freezing for a long interval.


Sent from my iPhone

On Jan 3, 2016, at 3:45 PM, <w5jo at brightok.net> wrote:

> Charlie,
> Check the specifications for the caps you plan to use.  Looking at the specifications for aluminum electrolytic caps I see the minimum operating temperature range from -25 to -50 C.  I looked at the Mouser site to find those numbers.  Give that information I don't think I would be concerned. What is of concern is how old they are.  As they age the paste will dry so, if you are using caps that are old I would do a leakage test.
> A few years back I ordered some Sprague caps to have for stock.  They have been stored in a climate controlled atmosphere (read indoors heated and cooled) for about 6 years.  I installed some of them in a receiver and in about a year they started leaking.  I replaced them with more from stock and the same thing, so I ordered new ones and the problem went away.  I can only guess they all came from a bad batch.  They were of different values and voltages.  I have yet to understand why that happened.
> Jim
> W5JO
> -----Original Message----- 
> Charlie,
> Put a few Electrolytic caps in your freezer.  after a week or so, take
> out and test.
> I'm going to do that myself, and then test to see if issues arise.
> Regards, Bob
> On 1/3/2016 3:39 PM, CL in NC via AMRadio wrote:
>> Do to circumstances beyond my control, I am having to relocate my shop to another building.  Prior to this move, my shop was attached to the house and had some residual heat getting in that kept it OK, nothing like the temp swings now.  Right now I use a kerosene heater when I am out there working, but have been leaving a special type of electric heater on when I am not there when freezing temps are expected.  So far, the electric unit keeps the temp around 40 if it's 20 out, but a 8 cents a KWH, it will get pricey fast.   The building is insulated, but ran out of money to put siding on it yet, just insulation board and R13 fiberglass.  On the chance that power fails and it is zero outside, and other than a long time for tube gear oscillators to stabilize after turn on,  what are the effects of freezing temps on things like electrolytics?  I've got a couple pieces of higher end test equipment, a comm service monitor and a Tektronix 465M scope, any adverse effects on those?
>> Charlie, W4MEC in NC
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