Is a lone UPS system enough to safeguard your business from the impacts of a potential power outage? While a UPS can certainly provide excellent protection against power surges and other technical problems that could otherwise damage your electrical equipment, what happens if a power outage goes on for longer than anticipated? Would a back-up generator be a viable addition to your emergency power supply plan? And will a UPS system work with a back-up generator? In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know…
While it is definitely worth investing in an uninterrupted power supply system and a back-up generator, there are a number of important considerations that often go overlooked. For example, ensuring that both systems complement one another and function properly.
You must make sure that both your UPS and generators are compatible and perfectly synchronized. Given how many different options there are on the market today, finding the right UPS system and back-up generator that align can feel overwhelming.
Fortunately, we’ve got a few pointers that can help you make the right decision and avoid any potential UPS compatibility issues.
Contrary to what you may have been told, size does matter. However, it’s not as simple or straight-forward as you may have hoped.
When it comes to the proper sizing of your generators, you must make sure that the generator sizes exceed the UPS’ power rating. Your generators must support the power rating, with an excess of at least 20% to 30% to cover power line conditioning.
When choosing the appropriate sizing for a generator to assist your UPS system, you must consider the following factors:
Asking the above questions can help you determine precisely how much power you need from your UPS – and thus how to size your back-up generator accordingly.
Let’s tackle some of the most frequently asked questions surrounding UPS / generator systems:
While you may have heard the term UPS generator before, its meaning is different to what you might expect.
Even though generators and UPS systems are both designed to serve as back-up power systems in the event of a power outage, a UPS system is not a generator.
It’s important to recognise the distinction between the two (and how well they can complement one another).
A generator can negatively impact a UPS system if they aren’t compatible. As mentioned above, if the voltage and frequency are out of sync, the UPS will likely reject the generator as a power source. Additionally, if the wrong type of UPS is being used with a particular generator, it can lead to all-manner of complications.
That said, if you take the necessary precautions to avoid any unnecessary UPS generator compatibility issues, they can complement each other wonderfully.
Having a back-up generator provides a number of advantages – for large corporations, small to medium-sized businesses, and at home. As to whether a UPS system is enough without the support of a back-up generator depends on a number of factors.
A UPS system on its own is critical for preventing equipment from shutting off abruptly or shorting out due to an electrical surge. However, it can only provide a very limited amount of power. While this can provide you with plenty of time to power down your equipment appropriately, without an alternate power source you will not be able to continue your operations until the power returns. Depending on the circumstances, this could be a matter of minutes, hours or longer.
If you have a back-up generator in place however, no matter the circumstances, you can keep your equipment powered up sufficiently without impacting your productivity.
The same applies for a home office environment. Having a UPS is great for temporary outages, but if you find yourself without power for several hours, you’ll wish you had a UPS generator for home use installed.
If you feel a little out of your depth and want to make sure that you avoid any unnecessary UPS / generator compatibility issues in the future, please do not hesitate to contact us. Not only can we help you determine the optimal combination of UPS system and back-up generator for your emergency power requirements, but we can also offer you our professional installation and maintenance services.