How to Install a UPS System Properly – Three Must-Do Steps
Organizations rely more heavily on reliable power systems than ever before. Selecting and installing a UPS system is a project that can be costly, but also carries significant risks if improperly installed. In order to avoid those risks, we have provided the three must-do steps to installing a UPS system properly.
1. CHOOSING THE RIGHT COMPANY:
There are several factors to consider when it comes to commissioning a new UPS unit. However, the most important decision you can make is partnering with a true consultative resource that makes a concerted effort to guide you through the entire decision making process.
The process isn’t simply the procurement of a new piece of equipment, it is the installation of a specialized system that must be integrated seamlessly along with your specific needs and expectations. A thorough and extensive plan on the front end should lead to a smooth installation, startup and life-cycle of your new UPS unit.
2. DECIDING WHICH UPS IS RIGHT FOR YOU
What type of UPS do you need? When considering an installation project, we look at the following factors when advising which UPS is right for you:
WHAT LOADS WILL THE UPS BE PROTECTING? WHAT IS THE ULTIMATE GOAL AND MISSION FOR YOUR NEW UPS UNIT?
- What exactly will the UPS be protecting? Servers, medical equipment, manufacturing equipment, telephony, etc? It’s important to first understand what your needs are before deciding what UPS is best for your specific needs.
- What is your runtime requirement?
- Will your organization experience load growth or significant reduction in the next few years?
HOW STABLE IS YOUR UTILITY PROVIDER?
- Not all UPS systems are designed equally. Some UPS systems are designed for installation in harsh environments and have a wider tolerance for input transients and power issues. This can be especially important when looking at the total life-cycle cost of your UPS and batteries.
WHAT DOES DOWNTIME MEAN TO YOU?
- For some installations, a single UPS or single pathway is acceptable for equipment loads, for other installations, full redundant electrical paths are key to improving uptime requirements. UPS redundancy is critical in many UPS Turnkey installations, but it is also based on the cost of downtime in your organization. Utilize our cost of downtime calculator to do a quick estimate of monetary value assigned to your particular needs – Calculate Your Cost of Downtime
3. INSTALLING THE UPS SYSTEM
Before the installing occurs, an extensive Site Survey may need to be performed. It is imperative to select the best location and design for your UPS system prior to install. Make sure to see our location guide for further details. Once that is complete, put together a plan to install, startup and educate necessary employees on different aspects of the system.
Organizations today are more dynamic than ever. Scalable, modular systems may help your organization control power capacity and cost based on growth in your load demand. However, a more robust, single module system may be better for your load profile. The experts at QPS can help guide you through this decision!
Once the UPS system has been selected, the real work begins. Proper project management and commissioning is key to a successful installation. During a new or replacement project, ensuring that all the appropriate stakeholders are involved is crucial. Schedule a pre-project kickoff meeting to understand what department might be affected by the work. Once this is established, work with your QPS project manager to discuss some of the following items:
- Project Timeline
- Delivery / Rigging
- Required Power Outage (if applicable)
- Risks associated with project
Lastly, one of the most important pieces of commissioning is to test your critical power system. To do this, simulate a power outage under controlled circumstances. Make sure you have complete faith in the system and that the installation functions properly. Each project should have a commissioning plan, so talk with your team and make sure you understand the requirements needed for your specific equipment.
Most UPS systems come with a limited factory warranty, however most warranties do not include routine PM inspections. It is imperative to have a plan for service during warranty and once that warranty expires. Similar to a car’s engine, a UPS system needs regular maintenance at regular intervals. Proper preventative maintenance along with replacing batteries, capacitors and fans is a crucial step to protecting your investment.