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UPS Testing: Identify Potential Power Interruptions
OTHER PARTS OF THIS ARTICLEPt. 1: UPS: Preventive Maintenance Ensures Power SupplyPt. 2: This PagePt. 3: UPS Maintenance ChecklistPt. 4: Top Tools for UPS MaintenancePt. 5: Adhere to NFPA Requirements During UPS Testing
Frequent testing of UPS equipment will help technicians identify potential issues and minimize problems caused by devastating power interruptions. In the past, a UPS was more difficult to test, and the units often would not notify technicians of low battery capacity.
As a result, technicians could not identify potential equipment failures until the actual loss of utility power. These days, many UPS are modular, which enables testing and replacement of certain components of the unit without interrupting full backup to loads being served for the duration intended. In other words, there is no longer an excuse for not testing and maintaining a UPS regularly.
Many newer UPS also feature advanced monitoring systems that provide system status for such items as system voltages, battery-backup times, and battery-test schedules. Other information included in monitoring includes whether the UPS operates on batteries, utility power or maintenance bypass.
Many systems can page technicians and provide information on the event if a problem arises. This information can be very helpful, especially in cases where technicians are not on site or the facility is monitored remotely. Some UPS also can conduct a controlled shutdown for computers in a network when a low-battery warning occurs.