Generally speaking, UPS systems are the first line of defense against power outages. As such, it’s important to understand how long a system will last, how often it needs to be repaired, and when you might need to replace it.
UPS systems are a complicated and sensitive piece of technology that is made up of batteries, capacitors, circuit boards and other parts that are highly sensitive to heat, moisture, dust and a whole host of environmental factors. Understanding these vulnerabilities will help you understand a UPS system’s lifecycle and how you’ll need to manage them.
UPS Systems vary greatly in terms of their upfront and ongoing purchase prices. Some systems may be inexpensive up front, but depending on software and system sensitivity, you might be locked into expensive long-term contracts. On the other hand, low-efficiency units might costs thousands up front, but come with low maintenance costs.
But either way – whether you have a big budget or a tiny one; you want to make your decision based off of the best battery design you can possibly get. UPS battery failure is almost always attributed to poor design, NOT cost.
Outside of battery design, you’ll need to determine what, exactly – is the current configuration or your system and what the cost of downtime would be to your business.
However, there is another, not as often-discussed feature you should consider. That’s called the MTBF or the “Mean Time Between Failure”. Most manufacturers should publish the reliability of their systems using the average number of hours between failure, or hours between critical failure. This will give you an idea of how to compare the costs of maintenance to get an idea of what the frequency of repair will be. So knowing your uptime, will give you an idea of what the overall lifespan of your battery will be.
Consider your facility and current equipment
Facilities tend to be fungible things – sometimes you stay at a place a long time. Sometimes you grow and need to expand both space and load. Sometimes you might even contract. Like anything, you don’t want to overpay, but you also want room to grow if you can afford it. Understanding the lifespan of your battery ultimately comes down to what you’re asking it to support.
All in all, you want to buy a UPS battery that will do what it says it will do for as long as possible. While there’s plenty to consider, you’ll want to make sure you get a well-designed battery that’s dependable that you can grow with and can handle the load of what you need it to do.
While not all businesses have the capability to do so, data and information is so vital to a businesses’ prosperity that we recommend that you should answer the questions above before setting a budget and then picking within the framework of what your businesses’ needs ultimately are.
If you have questions, feel free to give us a call and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation. Good luck!