Apr 282014
 

This post is mainly a rant but also discusses my use of a battery backup UPS (uninterrupted power supply).

After a recent fault with my main power supply to the house which killed my new PSU and surge protector (more on that later) i decided to purchase a battery backup UPS.

Battery Backup

I have used several APC units over the years for commercial clients so i choose them again but this time i choose one for the home user that offers 4 battery backup and surge protected sockets along with an addition 4 surge only protected sockets thus allowing me to plug everything in.
Here’s the full spec of the device – quick spec: 700va/405watts.

I currently have the following plugged into the 4 battery backup sockets: Main gaming PC, Dual 24″ screens and the external backup HDD. In the other 4 sockets i have: powered usb hub, 8 port gigabit switch and my laptop charger leaving 1 spare socket for a future device.
I choose this order as it will allow me to safely shutdown the pc without any data-lose or damage, the unit comes with software called powerchute which will allow the automatic shutdown of your pc when the power fails. You can set it to shutdown immediately or when there is 5 minutes remaining on the battery. I choose the latter but it doesn’t make much difference as with everything on i would only get 10-12 minutes out of the battery’s anyway. I tested this by killing the power and timing it while monitoring the powerchute software which will tell you remaining time on battery’s.

Rant time

Now hopefully i won’t have any-more dead PSU’s as it will always be shutdown safely, i say this because after having a fault with my main power supply to the house which caused the voltage to drop to 140v instead of the normal 230/240v. The power dropped several times, the first time it killed the surge protector and then some 15 minutes later it happened again killing my 4 month old Corsair psu AX860i, for those that know psu’s this is a high-end expensive psu retailing for around £170 at the time.

All credit to the power company as they came out within one hour of being called and hooked us up to a temporary supply while they dug up the road, we had a new permanent supply within 48 hours. Now for the downside, there customer relations/claims department that took 2 weeks to get somebody out to look at the PSU and surge protector. They sent a contractor out to collect the items and have them tested, well i got the call today saying they finished testing and would replace the surge protector but the psu is fine! and would be returned to me, I’m not sure how they can say its fine when even the built in self test says failed and it wont power a pc so i have been left with sending it back to Corsair for them to test and report what is faulty and hope they replace it, all this at my expense which will be discussed with the power company’s manager once i have the report from corsair. So that’s where I’m at after nearly 3 weeks.

I will post an update once i hear back and may even name and shame the companies depending on the final outcome.

Update

Its taken 6 weeks but the power company have finally agreed and paid for my replacement power supply, it arrived yesterday and is now fitted.