If your team has ever lost computer work from a sudden power failure, adding a battery backup, also called an uninterruptible power supply (UPS), to the information technology tools in your office may be worth considering.

The amount of time you’ll have to shut things down will vary based on the model you purchase, but you can expect to get at least a few minutes to properly save your work and power down your protected equipment.

How Battery Backups Work

There are two types of battery backups. A continuous battery backup takes power from your utility to charge an internal battery and then the equipment on the battery backup draw power from the unit. A standby battery backup has a similar battery setup but the machines on this do not draw power from the battery. The unit switches over to the battery when a problem is detected. The cut-over is virtually imperceptible by your equipment as it normally takes about 4 milliseconds.

A standby battery backup is normally less expensive so they are the way to go for everyday machines where a failure will be inconvenient but not disrupt your business. A continuous UPS is often the smart choice for servers and other mission critical applications as there is still a tiny margin of error for a standby model.

Battery backups are also a smart tool to consider if you’re in an older location with an unreliable power supply that surges or spikes. This can also make your equipment last longer as inconsistent power is a very common reason computers fail faster than they should.

Consider connecting your VoIP phone. Most modern business phone systems can be configured for Power over Ethernet (PoE) to deliver data and power to your equipment through the same cable. Connecting your switch to your UPS will then provide juice to the phone system through PoE during an outage so you have time to make a few calls.

Do you do most of your work through different websites? Connecting your router and modem to your battery backup will give you time to properly shut your online work down. A few extra minutes of Internet access will also allow you to learn more about what may have happened and how long your utility expects the outage to last.

Marathon can do a network audit for your office to determine the best way to add battery backups to your system. If you do need to add a UPS for your office, contact our team to take advantage of Marathon’s vendor pricing. Our engineers can also help set things up if you need assistance.

Photo credit: Duracell battery AA type by Anton Fomkin

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