What You Should & Shouldn’t Connect to Your UPS Battery
As an IT company who always strives to be on top of our technological game, we spend a lot of our time researching and understanding every piece of gear, every gadget, and every tech essential we offer to our customers. That way, we know exactly what to recommend our customers to best meet their needs.
That being said, we don’t just stop there. We typically try to take it a step even further.
To us, It’s never enough to recommend, price out, or purchase a piece of equipment that will benefit a client—we need to ensure we’re doing our best to educate those clients, too, so they know how to best use that equipment.
Recently, we responded to a client’s request to check in on their backup battery (often called an Uninterruptible Power Supply Battery or a UPS Battery). We sent our technicians out to take a look—the battery itself was running fine, the set up seemed normal. Everything was functioning normally.
So, why wasn’t the battery working?
To answer that question, we had to answer another one—what exactly was connected to this UPS battery day in and day out?
The result? A mini fridge.
That’s when it hit us again—education is key.
We can provide you with an amazing UPS battery, install it correctly, and be on our way, but if we’re not taking the time to educate you on proper use.
That got us thinking. Is anyone else out there providing this information?
We scoured the internet. And you know what? We came up kind of blank. There’s a surprising lack of info out there on what you can and can’t plug into your UPS battery.
We’re here to solve that problem.
Check out our go-to guide here to start answering the UPS battery questions you’ve been wondering about.
First Things First—What Exactly is a UPS Battery?
Odds are, if you’re reading this article, you probably already have a UPS battery. But, just to be on the safe side, let’s take a closer look at UPS battery to ensure you’re working with exactly what we’re talking about.
A UPS Battery is technically known as an uninterruptible power supply—but you can just call it a backup battery. To make it simple, a UPS battery is there to be a backup for your power if your regular power source fails your or if your voltage drops to a level that’s not acceptable.
Of course—like with most things within the tech world—UPS batteries come in all kinds of sizes and designs, but the general idea is the same. It’s a reliable, backup power source that’s there when you need it.
You can’t just plug anything into it and expect it to be all roses and daisies. In fact, there are actually things that you should never plug into your UPS battery. Why? It could result in damage—both for your UPS battery and the other item you’ve plugged into it.
So, how can you tell what’s safe to plug into your UPS battery and what’s not? We’re here to help untangle that confusion the best we can. Check out our can & can’t guide below for more information!
Things You CAN Plug Into Your UPS Battery
We’re providing you with these lists to help guide you toward best using and preserving your UPS battery—so long as you research, are thoughtful with your plug-in choices, and don’t get plug-happy on us, your UPS battery should be okay. Here are a few things you’re more than welcome to plug into your UPS battery.
- DSL or a Cable Modem
- Rechargeable Batteries (AA or AAA
- A Cordless Home Phone
- Backup Cell Phone Chargers
- Floor Lamps
- Kindles & eReaders
- iPod Docks
- Cell Phones
- Laptop or Desktop
- Modem or Router
Things You CAN’T Plug Into Your UPS Battery
So, we gave you a pretty long list of things that are A-OK to plug into your UPS battery. Plug it in, enjoy, and sleep well knowing your UPS battery is likely safe.
But, don’t get plug-happy on us just yet—remember, you can’t just connect anything to your UPS battery. Check out this list of things you should never, ever plug into your UPS battery.
- Power Strip or Surge Protector
- Extension Cord
- Additional UPS Battery
- Copy Machines
- Laser Printers
- Space Heaters
- Paper Shredders
- Curling Irons & Hair Straighteners
- Blow Dryers
- Medical Equipment (such as ventilators, respirators, power wheelchairs, scooters, oxygen, home dialysis equipment, etc.)
As a general rule of thumb, we absolutely recommend never plugging a device into your UPS battery that’s going to exceed the appropriate amount of VA/Watt ratings.
You might be scanning this list thinking, sure, some of these things make sense. But, you might also be wondering something like, wait a second—why can’t I plug my UPS battery into a surge protector, a power strip, or an extension cord?
The answer: it could cause so much more damage than it’s worth. Plugging a UPS battery into another UPS battery, a power strip, an extension cord, or a surge protector could result in several terrible outcomes (think fire, data loss, equipment damage, and more). Why? Because these things create the potential to overload either your device, your UPS battery, your outlet, or the breaker involved. Additionally, it can decrease the power efficiency of your UPS as well as damage your downstream units from a lack of sufficient active power factor correction.
Of course, we can’t possibly cover every last item you have in your office or home that you can or can’t plug into your UPS battery. But, we can offer our know-how for your item-specific questions. If you’re unsure whether you’re able to plug an item into your UPS battery—give us a call. We’re more than happy to answer your questions and give you a detailed solution for how to best use your UPS battery. Don’t hesitate to reach out! Give us a call at 713-589-3111