As regular readers know, MTBF by itself is misleading. When representing actual data it can be deceptive as well. Just because you have a high MTBF value doesn’t mean it is reliable.
In a previous article, 10 Reasons to Avoid MTBF, I mentioned that it is possible to have a relatively high MTBF value when the actual reliability is low. Ashley sent me the following note:
Hi Fred, i love reading your articles they are very informative. I have a question about something you said in a comment which i am hoping you will be able to clarify for me. You said products with higher MTBF can actually be less reliable than products with a lower MTBF
I have tried to find information on how this is possible online, and tried to do the maths myself to make this happen but i have to admit i am struggling.
No worries, Ashley, let’s work out an example to illustrate what I meant. [Read more…]