With the storm that blew through last night I thought it prudent to highlight some big mistakes that people have made when connecting UPS’ (Battery Backups).
We actually had multiple cases in the past two weeks where improper use of battery backups caused issues and downtime.
First off, let me stress that EVERY Computer and EVERY network device (switches, routers and modems) should be connected to a UPS. It does not help you if your server and your workstation stay up during a power outage/fluctuation if the device that connects them goes out.
The same must be stressed about your phone system. Businesses can lose tons of money when their phone system goes down for a period of time.
So to minimize downtime, protect the electrical equipment and extend the life of your computers you should ALWAYS use a UPS.
Having said that, improper use of battery backups can cause problems.
Here are the biggest mistakes.
1. DO NOT CONNECT A LASER PRINTER TO YOUR UPS. Laser printers draw too much power and can drain the battery in the UPS quickly. When that happens it shuts down your computer. We had a company last week that was having problems whenever they printed their PC shut Off. Our techs discovered that an employee had connected the copier to the UPS! Use a surge protector, not your UPS.
2. CONNECT YOUR PC TO THE BATTERY/SURGE OUTLET. Seems simple enough, but we received calls last week from companies in the Cinco Ranch area saying that their computer shut down when the electricity went off even though the PCs were connected to a new UPS. We discovered that they had connected the computers to the SURGE only side. UPS have 2 sides, one that has battery and surge and one that only has surge. Peripheral devices can be connected to the surge, but your Computers, Monitor, Switches, Modems and Routers should be connected to the Battery Side.
3. REPLACE YOUR UPS EVERY 3 YEARS. We received a call a few days ago from a company that their computer was coming up with a low battery warning and then it shut the computer down. It turns out that the battery in the UPS was faulty and the UPS software then shut the PC down. Every time the UPS takes a jolt in electricity it suffers some damage. Keeping old UPS’ around is a bad idea. The cost of the UPS is a fraction of the cost of a new computer or server, not to mention the cost of down time. SO replace your UPS every 3 years.
4. INSTALL THE SOFTWARE THAT COMES WITH YOUR UPS AND CONNECT THE USB CABLE. Most UPS’ these days come with management software and a USB cable, but seldom do people actually take the time to install it or connect it to the computer or sever. There are 2 advantages for doing this.
a. If the power goes out for an extended period of time the software will correctly shut your computer down instead of just killing the power to it when the battery dies.
b. We can use that software to test the UPS and receive other warnings.
5. CONNECT EVERY NETWORK DEVICE TO A UPS INCLUDING YOUR PHONE SYSTEM EQUIPMENT AND YOUR NAS BACKUPS DEVICES. We have seen database corruptions occur because the company failed to connect the switches to a UPS. They had multiple computers connected to a server and when the power went off they ended up corrupting the database. a basic 350va UPS is sufficient for most of these networking devices and only costs $42.
If you would like more information on UPS’ please contact Roy, Daniel or Mike on 281-647-9977, or come by the store on 21733 Provincial Blvd Katy TX 77450 and we will be happy to give you free advice.
For a list of current UPS/Battery Backups that we hold in stock please visit our website
Have a great week