Resistor failure modes are electrical open, electrical short or a radical variation from the resistor specifications. The failure modes vary with the type of construction of various resistors.

Resistor Failure Mode Probability Distributions

Fixed Resistor Failures

  • Electrical Open – 84%
  • Component parameters Change – 36%
  • Electrical Short – 5%

Carbon Composition Resistor Failures

  • Component parameters Change – 66%
  • Electrical Open – 31%
  • Electrical Short – 3%

Fixed Film Resistor Failures

  • Electrical Open – 59%
  • Component parameters Change – 36%
  • Electrical Short – 5%

Fixed Wirewound Resistor Failures

  • Electrical Open – 59%
  • Component parameters Change – 36%
  • Electrical Short – 5%

Variable Resistor Failures

  • Electrical Open – 53%
  • Erratic Output (Component parameters Change) – 40%
  • Electrical Short – 7%

Network/Array Resistor Failures

  • Electrical Open – 92%
  • Electrical Short – 8%

Thermistor Failures

  • Electrical Open – 63%
  • Component parameters Change – 22%
  • Electrical Short – 15%