The frequency of severe weather events has increased in recent years, causing power outages that pose a threat to equipment and data in small businesses and home offices. Even a short interruption can cause downtime leading to productivity and data losses. That’s why businesses need a plan for coping with power outages, and it should include an investment in Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) power protection backup solutions.
UPS systems don’t have to be expensive or complicated, and channel partners can play a key role in helping customers pick affordable solutions. Without the power backup provided by UPS, small businesses and homes can lose data from outages and prevent equipment damage from power surges. Power protection in homes is even more important with more staff working from home.
UPS systems provide a kind of insurance policy for devices and data in homes and small offices by giving users enough time to save their work when a power outage lasts more than a few minutes.
How to Choose a UPS for Your Customer’s Home or Business
Many customers don’t think about power backups when setting up or upgrading their IT environments, so it’s important that partners explain the need for a UPS. When discussing UPS solutions with customers for homes or small businesses, there are several factors to consider in finding the best fit:
UPSs for homes and small offices range from under $100 to several thousand dollars, depending on the equipment or system being protected. While price is a key factor for many customers, partners should remind them that it isn’t the only factor. A decision solely based on price can be risky when it involves a low-quality unit that doesn’t properly protect the equipment to which it is attached. For instance, a lightning strike can “fry” low-quality components. Safety and reliability also should be taken into account when selecting a UPS. Higher-quality units often come with either a lifetime warranty or extended guarantee.
Customers increasingly are conscious of the environmental impact of computer equipment, so partners should offer UPS devices with green features such as shutting off idle peripherals to save power. Some devices include high-efficiency charging systems and automatic voltage regulators to help reduce power consumption, which is ideal for cost-conscious home office professionals.
The amount of time a UPS supports connected devices during an outage is called “runtime.” In some settings, customers need only enough time to safely shut down equipment to prevent data losses. But some may need the UPS to keep running long enough for a generator to kick in or for several hours as a “bridge” until the outage ends. Knowing customers’ runtime needs helps partners find the best UPS fit.
This refers to the number of devices connected to the UPS and the rate at which they consume power. Partners need to review load requirements with customers to decide how much battery storage capacity their UPS units should have.
UPSs have batteries – that’s what keeps them running when the lights go out. Batteries come in different sizes and types. Most UPSs in homes and small businesses contain lead-acid batteries, but partners now have the option of introducing customers to lithium-ion batteries. These batteries can cost less, last longer and offer a smaller footprint that is ideal for smaller spaces.
UPSs in homes and small offices can enable network remote management and availability. Some UPSs can automatically cycle power to a smart outlet to reboot a hung modem or router. This is a good option for partners to keep an eye on environments that have no other monitoring capabilities.
Discover Resources to Maintain Uptime
The severity of weather events is bound to continue for the foreseeable future, but home and business users can stay connected and productive with the right UPS solution. For more information on how to make UPS selection easy and stress-free, access the UPS Buying Guide. In addition, you should consider Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxureTM IT Expert software to help minimize downtime at your business sites caused by severe weather. You can manage and monitor your sites remotely, and continually check on the health of distributed IT infrastructure at sites with limited or no IT staff.