Typically, these types of batteries have a lifespan of 3 to 5 years if they are properly maintained under optimal conditions. However, the battery's longevity may vary due to several factors that we will discuss shortly. By being proactive and mindful of these factors and conditions, you can ensure that your battery's life is extended.
1. To ensure that your equipment always has power, it is crucial to determine the best location for an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS). Installing the UPS in a temperature-controlled environment is highly recommended. You should avoid placing the UPS near open windows or areas with high moisture. Additionally, the UPS should not be operated under extreme temperature and humidity conditions.
2. AGM UPS batteries are often referred to as "maintenance-free," which can mislead many users into thinking that monitoring and maintaining the batteries are unnecessary. However, this is far from the truth. Adequate care and monitoring are essential even for maintenance-free batteries.
3. All batteries have a rated capacity determined based on specific conditions. The UPS battery's capacity is dependent on an ambient temperature of 25°C (77°F). Operating the UPS under these conditions will increase its lifespan and result in optimal performance. While it is possible to operate the UPS in varying temperatures, note that this may decrease the battery's performance and lifespan. As a general rule, for every 8.3°C (15°F) above the ambient temperature of 25°C (77°F), the battery's lifespan will decrease by 50 percent. Therefore, keeping the UPS at a comfortable temperature is critical to maximizing its lifespan and capabilities.
4. Power outages can occur at any time. When this happens, the UPS equipment will automatically switch to battery power to supply energy to the connected equipment (load). Once utility power is restored, the UPS battery will recharge automatically in preparation for the next outage, a process known as the discharge cycle.
When a battery is first installed, it has 100 percent of its rated capacity. However, every subsequent discharge will gradually decrease the battery's capacity. The frequency and length of discharge cycles determine how much the battery's capacity is reduced. monitoring the frequency of cycling can help prolong the UPS's lifespan.
5. A battery needs to be replaced when it reaches the end of its lifespan, which is defined as the point at which it can no longer supply 80% of its rated capacity. Once it reaches this point, the degradation process speeds up, and a replacement battery becomes necessary.
6. To avoid potential downtime, proactive UPS owners may consider purchasing a replacement battery before it's necessary. While this is a recommended strategy, there are some important factors to consider when choosing a UPS battery.
Unused batteries will inevitably experience a decrease in life cycles. Lead-acid batteries used in UPS units self-discharge over time, so it's important to charge them every 3 to 4 months. Failure to maintain the battery's charge can result in permanent loss of capacity within 18 to 30 months.
If you're unable to charge your battery while away, it's recommended that you store it at 50°F (10°C) or below. This will slow down the degradation process and help extend its lifespan.
While UPSs and their associated batteries are designed to be reliable, proper care is necessary to maximize their lifespan. Most users understand that batteries will eventually need to be replaced, but many overlook the importance of battery maintenance. Temperature and cycling frequency are two critical factors to monitor, but the importance of periodic inspections, positioning, and capacity cannot be ignored.
The batteries that last the longest and provide optimal performance are consistently the ones that receive the best care and maintenance. Providing optimal oversight for your UPS battery should be straightforward; just make sure you understand these factors and have a simple, consistent, and proactive plan in place.
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