UPS: A Maintenance Checklist

  September 17, 2010

This is Chris Matt, Managing Editor of Print & E-Media with Maintenance Solutions magazine. Today's tip is a checklist for uninterruptible power supply (UPS) maintenance.

The lifespan of UPS batteries is typically three-five years, depending on conditions and maintenance. At that time, technicians must replace them to ensure the unit operates properly. Keeping tabs on indicators of problems can ensure uninterrupted service to the equipment and facility operations, and, in many cases, a healthier bottom line.

Fortunately, many newer UPS have advanced monitoring systems that provide system status for such items as system voltage, battery back-up time, and battery test schedule.

Many systems can remotely alert technicians if a problem occurs. This information can be especially helpful if technicians monitor the facility remotely. Technicians also must test physical equipment quarterly, semi-annually, or annually using a specific checklist of items to cover. The schedule should include:

• conducting visual inspections for wear and deterioration of battery and insulation components
• cleaning and vacuuming the enclosure
• monitoring the enclosure's temperature and humidity
• performing thermal heat scans, which can indicate hot spots that often are the first sign of component failure
• testing other electrical-system components, such as transfer switches, circuit breakers, and maintenance bypasses.


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