We use computers for everything these days, don't we? We store all of our information on them. Instead of boxes of files in a warehouse somewhere, or a collection of old photo albums in the basement, we have all of our records and memories saved on hard-drives and servers throughout the world. What happens when we lose access to this information, either temporarily or permanently, due to a short-term or sustained power outage?
THE RIGHT SYSTEM FOR YOU
Luckily for business and home owners, on-site battery backup devices exist to save critical data in the event of an unexpected interruption of power. Depending on your storage needs and power demands, there are a range of Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) systems to choose from opens in new window. Having the right system in place can keep you from losing the use of your computer(s) or phone system, allow you to properly save your current work, stay connected to time-sensitive data and maintain your online connection; never losing communication with the outside world.
Although other back-up options exist, such as off-site or "cloud" services that offer remote or internet-based data storage, for many businesses that need to maintain near-zero downtime for on-site physical systems, such as telecommunications or other critical devices that rely on continuous power, a UPS system is vital to keep them running during shorter outages. Even for longer outages, in places such as hospitals, before diesel generators can kick-in to take over the power supply, there is a short gap in time (usually ten to fifteen seconds) where the UPS will have to keep things running without a glitch. Even if power is lost for just a second, mission critical systems and devices can malfunction and cause major problems.
WHEN DOWNTIME ISN'T AN OPTION
Since a UPS unit requires a functioning Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) battery to operate, if the battery is dead, then the whole backup system is useless. Due to the fact that many of these systems lie dormant for months at a time, it's easy for users to lose sight of the quality of the batteries that power their UPS system. Batteries Plus Bulbs franchise owners see this firsthand and can attest to the importance of making sure customers have properly functioning batteries for their back-up devices. Denver franchise owner Stephen Wiles recalls the first time he received a request for this type of battery:
It started when we got a call one Saturday for batteries that no one else had. We happened to have what they needed, so we delivered them to the location and helped a local phone tech install them. I then became friends with the telecommunications director for 3 hospitals in Denver. We now do a lot of business just replacing old batteries in existing units and selling new units here and there as the demand increases."
Besides phones systems and switches at hospitals, other medical facilities also often rely on heating and cooling units to preserve temperature-sensitive medication. Virginia-based Batteries Plus Bulbs franchise owner Bob Allan says one of his clients has such needs:
We just sold and installed a robust Smart APC UPS system opens in new window at a medical clinic that houses extremely valuable vaccines in their refrigeration units. They needed a solution that would guarantee that their units will never stop running, regardless of an outage, or the repercussions would be unimaginable."
Many other businesses also depend on backup power during an outage, such as banks, schools and any number of small businesses. Brandon Boozer, an owner in Oklahoma, remarks on the increase in demand among his commercial and retail customers:
We primarily target phone system installers and schools. However, personal usage is also on the rise now that everyone is beginning to realize the importance of backing up all of their data. Once I talk to customers about their needs, they are happy to invest in a UPS system and a quality battery to power it."
Stay prepared for storms and outages throughout the year by checking your battery backup power system today. Don't wait until it's too late to find out that you needed to upgrade your system or get a replacement battery.