Posts Tagged UPS
The other night we had a bit of a thunder storm and at on point a flash of lightning triggered a brief (less than a second) power hit. I have three separate UPSes (Uninterruptible Power Supplies) in the house — one for each of the two computers in the study and one by the TV, mainly for the TiVo. Well, two of the three completely failed to do their job. There’s actually a fourth UPS, but it’s already been relegated to surge protector status due to previous failures. And there’s probably a fifth (or more) in a closet. I seem to go through these things much faster than I would expect.
I can accept that they have a life expectancy that they could even be meeting it (doubt it), but my real problem is the fact that I receive no advanced warning that they are no longer providing protection. Actually, the fourth one I mentioned did give a warning when it was failing. It began emitting a high-pitched noise under heavy load, and what qualified as heavy kept getting less and less until it wouldn’t even run just the computer without complaining. Neither of the two that just failed are doing any such thing.
Luckily, everything came back up okay.
Well, it’s taken a number of months but the battery in the UPS for my Windows box has finally deteriated to the point that it can no longer power the system. I used to have other devices plugged into it and have been removing them over time as the UPS could no longer handle the load. Addmitedly, I was probably over-taxing it at first — 2.8 GHz P4, 19 in. CRT, HP 1600 Color LaserJet all on a 350 VA UPS.
I went to the APC web site to check for a battery replacement. They had it for $27+tax, plus $7 shipping. They also offered a trade-up program that purported to let you get up to twice the VA at up to a 35% discount. However, most of the reasonable replacements seemed to have little or no discount. Replacing it with the new version of the same model was $39+ts and moving up to 550VA was $56+ts.
I ended up picking up a new 550VA UPS at Fry’s for $70+t. I was going to get one for $60, but I liked the layout of the more expensive one better (lights and button on the side opposite of the power cable). Both were specifically not APC — Belkin instead — though Fry’s had the 550VA APC for $60 as well.