Top 10 Tips for UPS Ownership

Owning a backup power supply or UPS can be a great device that provides protection and a battery backup for your critical electrical devices. From the home, office, server rooms and many more applications ensuring checks and procedures are in place to ensure that your necessary electrical devices are powered when there is a power outage. At Critical Power Supplies, we have created a top 10 list for UPS ownership to ensure you stay powered during a power outage.

1 . Check the sockets your devices are plugged into the correct protection sockets.

On most plugin and play UPS devices, there are two types of connections. These connections are labelled in different ways, but most commonly it will be "surge protection" and "surge protection & battery" or uses symbols of a battery and an electrical bolt. There can also be master and slave sockets if your UPS model shuts down non-essential items to power critical loads for longer.

Critical Power Supplies - Cyberpower Bric UPS with two distinct Sections Showing Surge and Surge and Battery

2. Don't overload your UPS

Keeping an eye on the electrical load of your UPS is critical to ensure that in the event of a power failure, your backup power supply works as expected. If your electrical load is greater than the UPS is rated for then your battery backup will not kick in meaning you will lose power from critical electrical/IT equipment.

Critical Power Supplies - A UPS with the Overload LED lit up red

3. Test and or replace backup power supply batteries

There are a lot of plugin-and-play UPS devices that offer battery testing or perform automatic battery tests (Please check your manual or check the product page to see what testing systems are in place). Usually, UPS will have an alarm or flashing LED's that will notify you if there are battery issues.

Critical Power Supplies - An engineer testing batteries with a professional voltammeter

4. Maintain manufactures recommended operating temperatures

Manufacturers will have recommended operating temperatures in the user manual. The reason for these temperatures is that it will help lengthen the life span of the UPS and batteries, as well as keeping it within the warranty terms. Most importantly, for the safety of the product and anyone who uses the product. Keeping within these temps will save you money by not having to replace the battery or UPS as often. Battery life can be cut in half if you have prolonged running in high temperatures meaning you could have to use 2 or 3 more batteries compared to a battery in recommended temps.

Critical Power Supplies - Digital temperature and humidity sensor.

5. Ensure that any fans or air intakes of your UPS are cleaned regularly

If your UPS has any air intakes or fans, these are used to pull in air to cool the electronics and help prolong the life of the UPS electricals. It would be best if you kept these vents clear as not to obstruct airflow and cleaning these vents out every month or two. Cleaning can be done quickly by using a can of compressed air or even a vacuum cleaner.

6. Perform UPS maintenance such as battery calibration

It is critical to perform UPS maintenance like battery calibration some units have this built into the software or hardware, but you can do this manually as well. First, you need to stop any software running like Power Chute or PowerShield 3. Then disconnect any USB, Serial or ethernet cables. There must be at least 30% load attached to the UPS. A non-critical load is highly recommended. That doesn't fluctuate more than +- 5% With your non-critical load connected to the UPS disconnect the UPS from the mains. Allow the unit to run on battery life until it runs out entirely (The load will turn off). The load requires to be at least 30%; if this is not the case, then the calibration will not work. Then connect the UPS back to the mains with the UPS preferably turned off so that the battery recharges up to full.

Critical Power Supplies - 2 engineers performing UPS maintenance and looking at the UPS logs.

7. Has your runtime or power requirements changed since you purchased your UPS?

Overtime requirements change, and there is no difference with your UPS. You may gain more critical electrical equipment or have higher energy usage devices. These increase in requirements may mean that you need a longer duration of battery usage or even need a UPS capable of higher loads. A lot of UPS offer abilities to add additional batteries and even parallel UPS together to provide a higher load or even redundancy.

Riello Sentinel Pro 14Ahr EBM (for SEP 2.2/3kVA)
Critical Power Supplies - Riello Sentinel Pro 3kVA UPS
Critical Power Supplies - Riello Sentinel Pro EBM for 2.2kVA and 3kVA
Critical Power Supplies - Riello Sentinel Pro EBM for 2.2kVA and 3kVA
Runtime @ 100% Load:
5 Minutes
Runtime @ 100% Load:
9 Minutes

*When used with the Sentinel Pro 3kVA

1x EBM Runtime @ 100% Load: 27 Minutes
2x EBM Runtime @ 100% Load: 55 Minutes

*When used with the Sentinel Pro 3kVA

8. Have you considered using locking IEC cables?

Is your UPS in a situation where cables may accidentally pulled out? Then it would be best if you considered using locking IEC cables these cables allow you to lock the cables in place, preventing them from being pulled out and can prevent a cost disconnect of power to critical equipment. The simple change to locking cables could save you a lot of money.

Critical Power Supplies - IECC13-C14 Locking Cable
Available in
0.5, 1, 1.5, 2, 3, 3.5, 4 and 7 Meters

9. Do you require an SNMP card or a remote status panel?

If you require monitoring while you are away from your premises, then you will need an SNMP card or remote status panel. This allows you to receive any notifications of issues or logs via emails or even SMS. You can stay ahead of any potential problems from anywhere in the world with an SNMP card or remote status panel.

10. Do you need to take out an extended warranty or maintenance contract?

Issues could crop up at any time during the life of a UPS. This is where your warranty can come and help if there are any issues with your UPS.

But if your warranty is coming to an end then maybe you need to think about renewing your warranty. Maintenance contracts help to remove all the worry without significantly increasing the cost and come with 24hour telephone and email support and a fixed response time to site.

Call us today on 0800 978 8988 to learn more about how we can help you get the most out of UPS for free.

Hidden Tip and Savings

If you have a UPS with IEC sockets and need several UK 3pin sockets why not buy our 4 way sockets for 25% off with the code "10UPSTips". See the product below.

Cable IEC c14 male to 13a 4 way extension block
Critical Power Supplies - IEC to British 4 way socket strip.
25% Off this product with the code "10upsTips"

*Offer ends on the 31/12/2020