Continu’s 6 Top Tips to ensure your business is kept up and running this winter:
1. Properly maintain your UPS:
It is like owning a car, which requires all sorts of routine maintenance – like any equipment that has moving parts, a UPS also requires periodic maintenance. This entails an engineer coming out once or twice a year to check a list of items that may need replaced, e.g. fans, capacitors, filters. It is a highly visual examination; requires a trained UPS engineer and if a component looks like it is working properly, it is left intact. Emergency callouts can prove to be costly in the long run. If the UPS protects critical IT systems, you will need a proactive maintenance plan to ensure there are routine checks.
2. Make sure your UPS is actually protecting your equipment:
In addition to protecting from outright power failures, the UPS is also crucial to ensuring power quality is consistent, with no voltage variations, transients, spikes, or the like which are harmful, especially to sensitive equipment. Is it on and working? Many of us will have experienced panic when lightning strikes and our computer starts flickering! Did you know other ‘in-building’ equipment such as lifts/ air conditioners and fans can also cause such havoc to I.T.?
3. Health Checks:
If you are unsure of the status and overall health of your physical infrastructure systems, then hire someone to come in and do a health check, particularly if the systems are 10 years old or so. Health checks can determine current capacities, level of redundancy, map out dependencies, as well as find problems that could undermine availability.
4. Conduct regular temperature checks:
Assess the temperature and air circulation of the room where your UPS is housed. Is it constant or are there times when the temperature fluctuates? Large fluctuations can play havoc with your IT equipment and affect the lifespan of your UPS batteries. Is the area clean? Dust and other debris can also cause problems to your I.T. equipment and shorten the lifespan of moving parts.
5. Battery testing:
During past winter months, Continu’s UPS engineers were extremely busy attending call outs to businesses who’s UPS’s failed to provide critical backup power to their servers etc., often due to simple issues, for example, the batteries had long since expired! Are you confident your backup power will provide you with enough run time in the event of power problems?
Batteries are vital to the functioning of the UPS. Whilst the batteries sit idle on ‘standby’ most of the time, when there is an emergency mains power problem, it is critical that the batteries actually work.
Ensure your stand-by batteries are actually standing by. Data centres, financial services, heavy industry, communications, and transport are all critical services that rely on continuous power and cannot afford to be left in the dark.
6. Remote Monitoring:
Finally, install remote monitoring software. Remote monitoring of your equipment can prove to be time saving and cost saving. During the winter months your IT or facilities manager may not be able to reach the site. Continu’s partnership with APC EcoStruxure IT software is the solution. The software will provide instant notifications via a smartphone which gives instant visibility and the flexibility to monitor your IT infrastructure from anywhere.
Severe weather, vandalism, and third-party damage can affect the electricity network and leave your business without power.
Prevention is always better than cure. So whatever business you are in, our advice is to check your backup systems now, before it’s too late. Avoid downtime, data loss and potential hardware damage, and get in touch with the Continu team straight away – we will be happy to help.