These days, a battery backup system isn't simply a nice option - it's a requirement in business systems that need reliable service. Besides allowing for operations to continue even during power outages, a reliable Uninterruptible Power Supply prevents data loss as well as protecting sensitive equipment from power surges. Here's our quick guide to business UPS battery and backup systems.
Before Buying A UPS Battery or Backup System, Know What You Need!
At the end of the day, what UPS you select is going to be largely dependent on your needs at your location. There are two primary questions to answer:
- How much power do we need, and
- How long do we want our backup battery to last?
Answering the first question boils down to taking all the equipment on your network, and adding up the combined power consumption. If you're already keeping a network map and inventory, this is great information to add to it for future reference. Just remember to include future expansion plans as well, and purchase a system that will be able to handle equipment upgrades in coming years. As for the second question, the sky is ultimately the limit. Many battery-backup systems now allow for daisy-chained batteries and theoretically unlimited power storage. However, the batteries needed for this are also extremely expensive.
Our recommendation is to talk with your accountant/CFO and discuss the real-world financial impact of every minute of power outage. That, in combination with Tripp Lite's helpful usage calculators, should allow you to quickly explore some cost/benefit scenarios and decide how much backup to purchase. Remember, a battery backup system is ultimately an insurance policy, and something of a gamble. Weigh your battery investment against the statistical likelihood of a disaster befalling that would actually necessitate it.
The Five Top-Selling UPS Systems
All other considerations aside, these are the best-selling UPS systems we've seen, both in our own sales and in consultations.
For Personal Offices: APC BE350G
If you only need battery backup for a single room, the APC BE350G combines reliability with a low price point. APC is one of the industry standards in battery backup - reliable and stalwart. However, be aware that personal-sized UPS systems generally only carry a few minutes' charge for the price. You'll have time to save your work, but not to continue doing business.
Midsize Tower: APC SMX1500RM2U (1500VA)
In a small office environment, the APC SMX1500RM2U brings a good balance of power and price. As a tower-based unit, it's independent and portable, so it can be quickly moved between offices as your needs change. The line also comes with a convenient front panel LCD display that lists its charge, power consumption, and other vital data.
We recommend a Tripp Lite battery backup for growing server rooms that need battery backup. In the mid-range, Tripp Lite provides a superior value. You get a workhorse that's built to last, along with some of the most innovative power-management systems. Depending on the size of your operations, we recommend either the SMART1500LCD (1500VA), or the larger SMART3000RM2U (3000VA). The latter is also Energy Star certified to reduce its overhead.
For Large Operations: APC Symmetra SYA16K16RMP (16kVA)
When you have large-scale operations and equipment that simply cannot be allowed to shut down, we suggest the APC Symmetra line. Rack-mounted, fully scalable, and with ports for every piece of equipment in your server room - Symmetra is designed to allow for continuity of business even in the face of a severe natural disaster.
When In Doubt, Get Experienced Advice!
With dozens of brands of UPS units on the market, it can be tough to sort through your options. For more advice on how to best protect your network - and your business - from power failure, please don't hesitate to contact Hummingbird Networks for more advice!