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Old 05-19-2020, 06:53 PM   #1
presario425
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Question RIFA Class Y Capacitor remedy

Hi all!
I have a piece of gear with a Power-one SPL130 power supply in it. On the primary side, there is a very tiny (about the size of your thumb nail) RIFA Class Y capacitor, 2.2 nF. I'm not too sure about the condition (whether or not it's cracking) but I do know that it's there.

I'm aggregating information as to how I should remedy this. It hasn't exploded yet, but that's what I'm trying to avoid.

I've never seen a RIFA class Y safety cap self destruct (or at least it hasn't been documented in the past). However, it's not worth the risk to leave it in there. It's different from the class X (across-the-line) capacitors in that it's line-to-ground. It's worth noting that the gear in question is encased in a metal chassis.

I've heard in various videos and forum posts online that in most cases, these caps can just be omitted, but the context always seems to involve a Class X rather than a Class Y cap. If I just remove it for now, and temporarily leave nothing in its place with the understanding that I will be more prone to RFI (which isn't too much of an issue in this application), is that OK for the time being? Class Y caps are designed to fail open, so by removing it and therefore creating an open circuit, it should be fine and not pose a shock hazard, right? If I go this route, I will replace it with a suitable capacitor at a later date.

Thanks for any input!

Last edited by presario425; 05-19-2020 at 06:54 PM.. Reason: Clarified context
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Old 05-19-2020, 07:21 PM   #2
R_J
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Default Re: RIFA Class Y Capacitor remedy

Will this work? WYO222MCMBF0KR
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Old 05-19-2020, 08:19 PM   #3
presario425
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Default Re: RIFA Class Y Capacitor remedy

That is indeed a suitable replacement - thanks for the recommendation! However, I am unable to replace it at this time (and the lockdown definitely isn't helping that). What I'm wondering is if anyone knows if just desoldering that RIFA class Y will work for now, provided it doesn't pose a hazard of any kind.
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Old 05-20-2020, 10:40 AM   #4
eccerr0r
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Default Re: RIFA Class Y Capacitor remedy

These are all noise suppressing capacitors and it may introduce interference to radio/tv devices which may cause unwanted behavior.

The theory is that as a Y-class capacitor it should not fail short, and thus you don't have to worry about it else it's a recall...
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Old 06-02-2020, 07:31 AM   #5
presario425
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Default Re: RIFA Class Y Capacitor remedy

Sorry about the delayed response, all, been a bit busy as of late. I appreciate all the advice, thanks!

While it's true that Y caps shouldn't fail short, the same cannot be said about these RIFAs (I believe this one is a PME 271 Y) unfortunately. They tend to fail rather spectacularly due to the casing cracking and letting moisture in over the years. I also learned recently that these caps were not supposed to be yellow originally, they were actually clear. Why there wasn't a recall on these, I'm not sure - I guess these failures happened well after the cap's guaranteed useful life was over. Cheap, nasty plastic casing strikes again

For now, I will just remove it and not worry about it, and should I experience any RFI problems, I will order a suitable Class Y replacement and install it. There are other Class Y capacitors surrounding it (which are not RIFAs, they are decent quality ceramic disc capacitors and therefore should not explode ) so I don't expect many issues anyway. Again, if I do notice any interference troubles, I will solder in a replacement, but for now I won't worry about it.

Last edited by presario425; 06-02-2020 at 07:38 AM..
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