Many commercial businesses these days are heavily reliant on computers and the information they store for their day-to-day operations. Computers aren’t perfect, however, as interruptions in the flow of power can result in lost data and, in some cases, even damage the computer itself. What would happen to your business if you lost vital information due to a sudden fluctuation in power? Fortunately, there’s a very cost-effective way to combat these situations: an uninterruptible power supply.
What Is an Uninterruptible Power Supply?
An uninterruptible power supply (UPS) is a power supply system that provides emergency power instantaneously in case of power interruptions. It differs from a backup generator and other similar alternative power systems in that it draws power from a battery, or a mechanical flywheel in some cases.
Typically there isn’t much power in a UPS. Very rarely do they last for more than a few minutes. The primary purpose of a UPS is not to provide consistent backup power (for that you would need a backup generator). A UPS simply provides you with enough electricity to power computers or other critical devices for long enough to properly shut them down, backup the data, or get a proper generator running.
Why Every Business Should Have a UPS
If you run a business, you work with computers, perhaps dozens or hundreds depending on the size of your business. Although there are many methods of storing and backing up important data, those methods have their limitations, and they generally aren’t instantaneous. In the event of a sudden power failure or a power surge that data can easily be lost without any way of retrieving it. In some cases, the computer itself could be damaged.
UPS systems provide instantaneous protection in cases like these, powering on immediately and allowing you the chance to back up data or shut down the computer properly, avoiding damage. Not only does it keep power flowing uninterrupted during a blackout, it also continuously stabilizes the voltage. That means if there’s ever a sudden dip or spike in the power flow, your computers will remain completely unaffected.
How to Choose the Right UPS
You have to consider several factors when choosing a UPS for your business. We’ll discuss a few of them in depth here.
- How many systems need uninterruptible power? UPS systems can only provide a limited amount of power so attaching too many devices at once can cause the system to fail or deliver power for a much shorter period than anticipated. Also, keep in mind that not every system in your building necessarily needs this. A UPS is generally used on computers and other devices that are critical to your operation or susceptible to damage from fluctuations in power.
- How long do you need the UPS system to provide power? This varies greatly depending on what you would need to do in a blackout situation. Would you need to manually backup information or would you just need enough time to shut down computers properly? Are you going to be using a backup generator in conjunction with your UPS?
- Do you want a battery or a flywheel? The vast majority of UPS systems draw power from a battery, but a flywheel is also an option. Flywheels are much smaller and lighter than battery-based UPS systems but have a much shorter runtime. Typically a flywheel system can support a load for anywhere from 10 to 30 seconds. This may not seem like much, but it’s more than enough if your main concern is protecting your computers from surges and dips in power.
Choose the Right Electrical Contractor
As you can see, choosing a UPS can be difficult. There are many considerations to make, and every business has different needs, not to mention a different power grid. Choosing the right electrical contractor can help you make the right decision. A contractor with experience designing and installing UPS systems can help you properly analyze your needs and choose the right unit for your business.
Eau Gallie Electric is an electrical contractor in Florida specializing in both uninterruptible power supply systems and backup generators. We have a level of experience in both the private and government sectors that allows us to complete each project on time while minimizing excess costs. Looking for a UPS for your business operations? Give us a call or contact us online right away.