Hardware quick-fire questions
How do I find replacement parts?
Just replacing one 0.22 microfrarad capacitor with another of the same capacitance isn’t enough. Capacitors are also rated according to the maximum current and voltage they can handle, as well as the time it takes them to discharge, once the voltage is removed. The only way to be sure is to find the exact part number written on the side and google that, or search an electronics catalogue such uk. rs-online.com or uk.farnell.com.
What was the capacitor plague?
Normal electrolytic capacitors last 6-10 years in normal use, but between 1999 and 2003, some disreputable Taiwanese manufacturers used poor quality electrolyte in capacitors that were used right across the electronics industry, including by Dell, Intel and Apple. These capacitors began failing in 2002 and cost hundreds of millions of dollars in warranty returns for the next five years.