UPS: Replace bateries or unit?

Discussion in 'Power Supplies' started by [21CW]killerofall, Dec 10, 2018.

  1. [21CW]killerofall

    [21CW]killerofall Aliens...

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    So I have an old (~10-12 years) GeekSquad 1285VA UPS (same as listed in this thread) and I have replaced the batteries several times, last of which was 3 years ago and now I have instant power loss on less than 75W load when the power cable for the UPS is pulled from the wall so the batteries are due to be replaced again. It did work during a brown out a month or so ago so the unit appears to still be functional.

    Note: it is possible that the PSU could be at fault due to aging caps not being able to hold a charge long enough for the UPS to kick in as it is 5 years old but it has worked flawlessly so far and I am not about to tear down my PC/PSU to inspect it as it doesn't have modular cables. The batteries are at the end of their expected life span so they should be replaced anyway.

    Should I just spend $40 and replace the batteries (with these) or should I buy a new unit (min 1000VA but would prefer 1350VA or 1500VA)?

    If replace unit, what should I buy? I want one that can deal with an active PFC power supply that my PC uses but nothing else fancy is connected. I think a simulated sign wave UPS would be fine but I am not 100% sure. I was looking at a sale on Newegg (and Amazon and BH) for a 1350VA one and 1500VA one.

    I don't really want to spend $100+ but don't want to throw $40 at a problem and it not last at least 3 years (expected life of new batteries). I can afford to buy a new UPS but would rather not spend the $ unless it would make more sense in the long run.

    What say you [H]? Throw some knowledge my way.
     
  2. Grebuloner

    Grebuloner Limp Gawd

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    Considering you want to run your UPS with modern power supplies, buy yourself a new one. That said, if you have some smaller electronics that you want to keep running during an outage (like modem/wifi router), you could also replace the battery in the old one and use it for that instead of tossing it-though check those caps first. I've got one for my modem and a spare mini wifi router and assuming the cable line wasn't severed with the power line, I can still remain online for many hours.

    Now, of the two models you listed...don't buy either one. They're "simulated sine wave" which can be a problem with new PSUs. It's like a crappy digital step pyramid instead of the smooth curve you actually get from AC. You want to get the pure sine wave model ("PFCLCD"): this one. If you're willing to stick it out, that 1500VA model can often be found on sale as little as $125. I own a few of them and I never paid full price, though they are well worth the extra dough if you're looking to buy now. They have served me very well over the years I've used and abused them, and battery replacements aren't unreasonable. They'll also run/control 2 systems if they fit in the total power output of the UPS (and one has a serial port).
     
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  3. atarione

    atarione [H]ard|Gawd

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    well... I just went thru something like this.. bought new battery for the 7~ (?? at least 7 years) old UPS on my wife's pc.. the unit itself was faulty so had to buy new ups

    for a ups that old I'd personally say replacing it seems like a safer bet.. you might be able to take it to batteries plus or whatever and see if they can test it with a new battery to see if it still works properly?
     
  4. jevans64

    jevans64 Gawd

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    I have a CyberPower PR2200LCDRTXL2U. I have a 31.5" LG 1440p monitor and 4770K w/GTX 1080 ( 149 watt load ) on it with a backup time of 151 minutes. The backup time is 387 minutes with the battery pack expansion.
     
  5. hititnquitit

    hititnquitit Limp Gawd

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    i want to know where your buying them from!! ive been watching that very ups on both amazon and newegg for over a year and ive yet to see it drop below $175. normally it bounces around $199 and $189. im also running a 10-12yo apc 1500/900 ups. i replaced the batteries roughly 5 years ago. im waiting for these to start showing signs of needing to be replaced so i can get the friggin cyberpower pfclcd for $125 lol.
     
  6. Grebuloner

    Grebuloner Limp Gawd

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    I've bought all of mine from Newegg. They popped up in the email deal blasts and once in a shell shocker. I wasn't in a hurry so I just kept scanning the deals until they showed a big dip.
     
  7. sirmonkey1985

    sirmonkey1985 [H]ard|DCer of the Month - July 2010

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    i got mine from amazon for 125 + tax in January i think and was the same price at newegg. have seen them on sale a couple times since then as well but right now it's mostly been their simulated sine wave 1500VA UPS's that have been on sale lately. maybe the closer we get to christmas or right after it you'll see them pop up again. or at least i hope they do because i need to buy another one for a new system i just built.
     
  8. BrainEater

    BrainEater Gawd

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    I usually just change the batteries.Easy.cheap.
    I would look for a local supplier tho.

    Pro tip : UPS batteries are the same as emergency lighting batteries so you can often find them via electrical contractors too.

    (y)
     
  9. tedych

    tedych Limp Gawd

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    3 years seems too short before batteries die.
    My last set of batteries lasted almost 6 years before they began keeping the PC for less than 10 minutes. They just almost gradually degraded their capacity from 50 min. down to about 15 minutes backup time. Then at last they weren't keeping more than few seconds. After I replaced them I tested old 3 batteries and it was just one of them that totaly failed, the other two would have been just Ok for longer. Current batteries are in their 4th year and still keep the PCs for 30-35 min. The key is to periodically cycle the UPS (almost fully discharge/recharge) at least once in 2-3 months.

    That said, if your UPS is not sine wave and you care about your A-PFC computer not shutting down after a brownout or blackout, I'd just buy another one. I find even a single "miss" of an UPS as critical and wouldn't be calm about my machines.
     
  10. [21CW]killerofall

    [21CW]killerofall Aliens...

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    Thanks for the advice guys. So I have decided to just replace the unit. I will buy the APC BN1500M2 (1500VA is overkill for my current setup but I thought I would be better off overbuying vs the 1000VA that is about $25 less). Note that this does specifically support active PFC power supplies, even though it is not a true sine wave UPS, https://www.apc.com/shop/us/en/prod...B-Charging-Ports-AVR-LCD-interface/P-BN1500M2. It is cheaper than the pure sine versions but I only need the active PFC support so this should be fine for my needs.
    Office Depot eBay has it for $156 (50 left, as of this posting), https://www.ebay.com/itm/APC-Back-U...le-Power-Supply-1-500VA-900-Watt/192721934708, which I plan on picking up on Sunday with the eBay 10% off coupon, assuming that the price doesn't go up between now and then, like it did on the Office Depot website.

    I might end up replacing the batteries in the old unit and throwing it on my work setup (Dell 5480, dock, 2 monitors) that I use on my work from home day (Friday) as I just have that on a surge protector.
     
  11. tedych

    tedych Limp Gawd

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    They may have put something to mitigate A-PFC compatibility for the moment of switching between mains and battery but the inherent problem with simulated sinewave remains. A-PFC doesn't play well with non-sine waveforms.
    Still, the large power "over"capacity (1500VA) should be enough to keep you safe for the rare periods when you run off batteries.
     
  12. [21CW]killerofall

    [21CW]killerofall Aliens...

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    So I got the new UPS today. Very nice hardware and software. It has no problems with my active PFC PSU as I can pull the plug with it on and it keeps chugging along on battery power. I should be able to get about 60 minutes just while at idle and 15 minutes at full CPU and GPU load (~350 watts). Also if I am just keeping my modem and router up, ~180 minutes.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2018
  13. larrymoencurly

    larrymoencurly [H]ard|Gawd

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    Another place to buy batteries kind of cheap: fire/security alarm supplies.

    What brands of capacitors are inside the backup supply? Unplug the AC power and remove the batteries before checking. If they're something like Nichicon, Chemicon (UCC), or Panasonic and none are bulging on top or on bottom (rubber plug sticks out) or leaking, I'd probably keep the unit, at least if it passes the vacuum cleaner/laser printer/power saw turn-on test, where you plug one of those things into the same wall outlet that the backup is plugged into and then turn on one of those devices. If the computer locks up or crashes, then the backup isn't built well. My Belkins failed that test, but all my APC/Conext backups passed.
     
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