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UPS reports overvoltage - should I be concerned?

Posted on 2010-11-29
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
I have an APC Smart-UPS supplying an SBS server. The PowerChute software has thrown up the error "The UPS has experienced a high input voltage more frequently than normal".

The electrical spur supplying the UPS is new, installed last week.

Looking at the graph in the PowerChute console for the last 24hrs, the input voltage has mostly been between 249 and 252 with a single spike of 255. In the last few hours, it's fallen to between 240 and 243 (The domestic supply in the UK is 240V).

I know how to increase the High Voltage limit from it's current limit of 253V, but I'm not sure whether that would be just ignoring the problem.

Should be concerned about the quality of the electrical supply? And is there any risk to the server?
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Question by:andymilli
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6 Comments
 
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Accepted Solution

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Britt Thompson earned 350 total points
ID: 34229134
Since you're using a Smart-UPS your server is OK...that "Smart-UPS" means it filters the dirty power and makes it safe for the server. I would consult and electrician to make sure your circuits are wired correctly and your fuses are not in need of replacement.
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Author Comment

by:andymilli
ID: 34229284
Thanks, I thought that would probably be the case, but I don't like guessing when it comes to a server!

I've spoken to the electrician who installed the new spur last week, but he doesn't think we should be too concerned. As the spur and fuse are both brand new, he thinks the problem is with the supply into the building, and if we continue to get high voltages we should perhaps contact the electricity supplier.
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LVL 30

Expert Comment

by:Britt Thompson
ID: 34230431
Over voltage can ruin your equipment so I'd be sure you have a Smart-UPS for just about everything...I know in the US we can get surge protection at the source where the power comes into the building to eliminate the need for the more expensive UPS devices and surge protectors.
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LVL 32

Expert Comment

by:aleghart
ID: 34235605
255VAC shouldn't worry you.  Even in "standard" mode, it will take up to 285VAC.  I'd leave it as-is and compare with other UPS.  Do you have others that are also 230V?


==

http://www.apc.com/products/resource/include/techspec_index.cfm?base_sku=SUA3000I

Input voltage range for main operations
160 - 285V

Input voltage adjustable range for mains operation
151 - 302V
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Author Comment

by:andymilli
ID: 34247404
Thanks. It's small network and this is the only UPS we have, with two servers running of it. We have a couple of Linux servers with surge protectors, but they aren't used much and are not critical. Could this be a risk for routers and switches?
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LVL 32

Assisted Solution

by:aleghart
aleghart earned 150 total points
ID: 34252468
Power quality is always a risk factor.  Most power supplies will have a range for acceptable voltage, as you can see by the spec on your UPS.  Computer power supplies are also a bit flexible.  Network gear is also a little flexible.  Nobody gets exactly 120V on "120" service.  At the very minimum I'd put a power conditioner in place.  It will trim excess voltage and boost low voltage, even surviving through very short dips that would otherwise crash a system.  They're cheap (50-75 USD), and can handle up to 1000W or more of load.
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