Frequently Asked Questions

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UPS FAQ

  1. What does UPS stand for?
  2. Do I need a UPS?
  3. What size UPS system do I need for my operation?
  4. What equipment should be supported by the UPS?
  5. How much backup time do I need from a UPS?
  6. How often must my UPS be serviced?
  7. When will I need to replace my UPS batteries?
  8. The red 'Replace Battery' light is on my APC UPS, what does this mean?
  9. The 'Battery Capacity' lights are flashing on my APC Smart-UPS, what does this mean?
  10. The 'Overload' light is on, what does this mean?
  11. My UPS unit will not turn on, what can I do?
  12. My APC UPS is making an alarm sound and a warning/alarm light is on, what is wrong?

Generator FAQ

  1. Do I need a generator?

1. What does UPS stand for?

UPS stands for Uninterruptible Power Supply. This means a constant supply of power with no interruption for as long as the UPS battery will allow.


2. Do I need a UPS?

UPS systems protect against ICT downtime caused by system crashes, hardware damage and data corruption resulting from power interruptions. In most industries, the potential cost caused by a power interruption will easily exceed the purchase and maintenance expenses of a UPS. Purchasing a UPS system will safeguard you against any power interruption. Refer to IT Power's lineup of UPS systems.


3. What size UPS system do I need for my operation?

You need to determine the load of the critical equipment to be protected in the event of a power failure or power sag/surge. A UPS will typically support servers, backup systems, network switches, security systems, access control, etc. Contact IT Power for professional assistance in correctly sizing your UPS.


4. What equipment should be supported by the UPS?

This will be determined by the cost to your organisation when critical equipment loses power, the expected frequency of disruptive power events, and the cost of the UPS needed to support the critical equipment. Contact IT Power to discuss the options specific to your operations.


5. How much backup time do I need from a UPS?

UPS systems usually provide enough backup time to ride out brief power disturbances or to safely shut down the supported equipment in the event of an extended power failure. The backup time may be as short as five minutes, however by adding extra battery packs the backup time can be increased to several hours if required.


6. How often must my UPS be serviced?

UPS equipment must be maintained proactively if it is to operate effectively when future power events occur. When UPS equipment is maintained reactively, UPS or battery failures cause unscheduled outages for the connected critical equipment. This defeats the purpose for which the UPS equipment was initially installed. Contact IT Power to discuss maintenance options specific to your equipment.


7. When will I need to replace my UPS batteries?

UPS battery life is determined mainly by manufacturing design and quality, ambient temperature and charging/discharging conditions. Batteries may typically last anywhere from 12 months to five years or more, depending on these factors. An environment that is too warm will reduce the service life of your UPS batteries, as will a battery charging voltage that is too high. IT Power has the specialist expertise and equipment to undertake detailed battery condition evaluation to avoid unexpected failure.

8. The red 'Replace Battery' light is on my APC UPS, what does this mean?

This may occur in several situations:
  1. The UPS battery has come to the end of its useful life and its performance has significantly degraded. It now requires immediate replacement. Contact IT Power to discuss options.
  2. The battery is fine but the UPS needs recalibration. If the battery was replaced while the UPS was still running, the UPS probably thinks it still has the old battery. To recognise the new battery the UPS needs a self-test, a runtime calibration test, to be switched off and on, or a recalibration/service by IT Power. Contact IT Power to arrange service work.
  3. If the battery is not 100% charged and/or there is a lot of load on the UPS when it is starting up, the UPS may incorrectly report 'replace battery'. Disconnect the load until the UPS has passed its start-up self-test.
  4. If the unit is a Back-UPS ES the 'replace battery' light can come on due to a UPS failure. To check whether the unit has failed, remove the load then disconnect the mains. Now check for normal operation. An 'Overload' light indicates a likely failed (and not economically repairable) UPS. Contact IT Power to discuss.


9. The 'Battery Capacity' lights are flashing on my APC Smart-UPS, what does this mean?

The UPS is warning that it cannot provide adequate runtime to shut down the computers given the current load, battery condition and user settings. Most commonly, this warning is a sign that the batteries need to be replaced. The UPS software may also report �Battery Discharged� or �Insufficient runtime available� errors in this situation. Call IT Power on 0800 487 693 to get a replacement battery!


10. The 'Overload' light is on, what does this mean?

The UPS is overloaded (most likely) or the inverter is blown (UPS is not economically repairable). If the unit is a Smart-UPS, check the load lights on the left hand side. If the lights indicate the UPS is overloaded and all the connected equipment requires UPS protection, contact IT Power to discuss upgrading your UPS. To check for a blown inverter, disconnect all load, restart the UPS if necessary, then disconnect the mains. If the unit still overloads instead of running on battery, the inverter is blown and the UPS requires replacement. Call IT Power on 0800 487 693.


11. My UPS unit will not turn on, what can I do?

You need to ascertain:
  • Is the battery connected?
  • Is the battery old?
  • Is the UPS plugged in?
  • Is there power at the UPS input power lead?
  • Have you pressed the 'on' button? (on most Smart-UPS the top '1/Test' button on the front turns the UPS on and the lower '0' button turns it off)
If you have answered "yes" to all these questions then try to cold-start the UPS, i.e. start it up on battery power. With the latest APC models, this is usually done by holding down the �on� button, then releasing it once a second beep is heard or the UPS starts. Cold-starting the UPS proves that the UPS is essentially functional and that the problem lies with the presence or detection of input power. Perhaps an input circuit breaker has tripped or fuse has blown. If you cannot remedy the situation arrange for IT Power to service the UPS.


12. My APC UPS is making an alarm sound and a warning/alarm light is on, what is wrong?

This could be one of several things:
  1. If the orange battery light is on and the UPS alarm is sounding beep-beep-beep-beep, <pause 5~10 secs>, beep-beep-beep-beep etc., then the UPS is running on battery power. Check that its power cord is plugged in and the power has not been switched off.
  2. If the red 'overload light' (next to the 'see-saw' icon) is on and the UPS alarm is sounding a non-stop tone then the UPS is overloaded. Unplug some of the equipment from the UPS. You may need to purchase another UPS to support the remaining equipment. Contact IT Power to ascertain what system you require.
  3. If the red 'replace battery' light is on and the UPS alarm is sounding a continuous 'bleep-bleep-bleep-bleep-bleep...', the battery needs replacing. Contact IT Power to discuss battery replacement options.
  4. Failed batteries can sometimes cause unusual behaviour in UPS systems, including strange alarm noises or indicator light combinations. You can send your UPS to IT Power for a free evaluation or call us for further assistance.


13. Do I need a generator?

Generators are typically used when an organisation needs to continue to provide power to certain critical equipment during extended power outages. An advantage of having a generator is that the UPS system can then have a small battery capacity because it only needs to rely on its batteries for the short period while the generator is starting up. If you would like to discuss the installation of a generator at your site, please feel free to contact us to arrange a meeting.
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