Battery Surge Protector Backup

isteppenwolf

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Jun 22, 2020
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I honestly did a search using several words before starting this thread. I now realize that I did not use the search for " surge protector " Maybe there is something there however i'm much more interested in the "BATTERY" part of the information I'm looking to find.

If this post needs to be moved I'd like to know how that decision is made. Not a criticism just curious how the decisions are made.

In any event; I have battery back up on every desktop and TV/Electronics. Over time they fail and I replace them vs change the batteries inside which are indeed less money than buying a new one even when on sale however I hear that 1 no one knows how long they have been on the shelf or the conditions of their storage. 2 the exact replacement number for whatever unit has failed seems to be offered ( like car batteries ) in different qualities represented by the cost. 3 I know a little about electricity but as the old saying implies " a little knowledge can be dangerous " and electricity is nothing to fool around with if one doesn't know what they are doing.
All that said I'm wondering if, as I have learned with car batteries there are safe money saving ways to extend the life of a car battery. A battery " tender " for instance is well worth the cost for how many years more you can get out of your car battery. I had never heard of it nor been told about it, nor knew anyone who used one. Why aren't we told about them when we get our first car or truck or ATV or anything that uses that type of battery? Vehicles usually have wet cell/lead acid while the battery back UPS use
dry cell/gell batteries that are completely sealed and in theory they should never leak which if you think about it is very important since they are often kept on the floor or inside a piece of furniture and fumes do not escape.

You can find/buy these replacement batteries at Home D but try asking the so called department experts about them. I only know of one expert at the store in my hometown who I would trust his knowledge base on almost anything concerning electricity. He is on vacation now so I figure I'd ask here hoping that someone knows how to extend the life of the dry cells or replace them with better longer lasting ones,

Recently I saw an ad on TV for a new battery whole house back up from Generac that is powered by the sun. No one at the big box stores that sell the brand know what I'm talking about which is not uncommon since they are not trained and kept up to date about new products so I've read as much as I could find and since it is relatively new the prices are all over the place and as protection for my TV it is over kill but since it is called " whole house " I'm looking to get the real truth about what can be expected and is it a supplement to the Generac fuel powered whole house generators.

Back to my TV battery back up. I have a 55 inch LCD and connected to the back up is my modem and router. It's 1300VA and I use it to give me a little extra time to turn things off. They do not have enough power of run time to actually watch TV while the AC is down.

I also recently read an article online about customizing you back UPS when the batteries are finished and the idea and pictures support an idea that I;ve had for years but respecting the old addage about what I DON'T KNOW, I've never tried changing the battery type, and size. This unit that I have calls for 2 12V DC 9A This online article showed two car batteries with 10 gauge wire with clips connected and run into the UPS unit through holes drilled through the plastic case. Too many unanswered questions.

Any thoughts, ideas, links, lectures to broaden my knowledge as I did with the battery tender?
 

Cookiegal

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I've moved the thread to the Hardware forum. It could go there or also in the DIY forum but since it also involved running the computer I thought it would get more exposure in Hardware. When choosing a category it's important to make sure what you want to post is a good fit for that category. You posted this in the Tech Tips and Reviews forum while you're not posting any tips or reviews but asking for opinions.

As for the Generac, they are very good but you're talking big bucks. I'm not sure it protects against power surges but they have a separate whole home surge protector so be sure to verify that before making your decision. I know a bit about them because my neighbour has one that runs on propane. He needs it more to make sure his sump pumps run during power outages because he's only there on weekends and has a lot of water on his land so he pumps all year round. When the power goes off and I hear it come on then I know it's not just me who's affected. It also runs a test once a week for 10 minutes.

I couldn't find much on the run time for solar-powered version so I'd want to know that because the power could be off for days at times. Of course it will depend on the amount of energy it can get from the sun on any given day but if it's cloudy and raining and the power is out for a few days I'd want to be sure it can deliver.
 

zx10guy

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I found this article on the Generac system:

https://news.energysage.com/generac-pwrcell-battery-review/

With that said, I looked into solar and whole home backup systems. The system I looked at which was 100% battery powered was from a company called Banner Power. At the time for my then power needs, it was about $20k. Not cheap at all. With the system we're talking about from Generac, the smallest battery pack starts at $9k and go up based on the size of the battery pack system with the largerst being a 6.7kW 17.1kWh per the article. This is all outside the cost of putting in a solar array. Typical solar systems run about $20k also depending on your energy demands and if you have enough roof space and if that roof space faces the appropriate direction.

My usage of electricity is extremely high compared to the typical household due to the data center I run in my basement. My usage has dropped since I had a solar evaluation done on my home as I've shut down a lot of the equipment. But back then with the roof space I have, solar would only supplement 40% of my usage.

When you look at solar, you have to be aware of the efficiency of the panels themselves. They range in efficiency and of course the cost goes up for the more efficient panels. But here's the dirty details. The most efficient panels on the market are about 18.7% efficient. To put this in perspective, the panels used by NASA for their space craft are 34% efficient. So you have to oversize your solar panel system above your power needs to also have enough electricity to charge the batteries.

So after reviewing my options and requirements, I ended up having a natural gas generator from Generac installed. It ran about $16k to have it installed. I have a 20kW generator which technically is a 18kW on natural gas (20kW rating is for when it runs on propane). I initially thought about getting a 10kW system to save some money. But having to decide which circuits to power wasn't worth the headaches and cost savings. My system was load tested where my A/C and dryer were running to see how the generator was keeping up. It sailed through with flying colors. And to give you an indication of the size of my home, it's about 3200 to 3300 sf including the basement with 2 above grade floors and 4 bedrooms. The cost was a bit higher with my install as it required a new gas meter from the utility because of all the gas appliances I have in my house (3 fireplaces, furnace, hot water, and stove range). It was about an additional $500 for the new meter.

If you decide a backup generator is for you, ensure the generator you get has a low harmonic distortion rating which will make it suitable to supply power to electronics. You can mitigate this with the use of UPS'. The generator I have is rated for electronics. But I still have UPS' for my critical electronics.

There was a mention of a whole house surge protector. A backup system will not protect against power surges. The backup system won't come into play until the transfer switch is activated from detection of a power loss. The transfer switch is part of any backup power install and was a pretty significant cost in my installation. If I remember correctly, it was about $2 to 3k. Plus I had to have two load center modules to cover the A/C and dryer. Getting back to the whole house surge protector, I installed one myself at my main service panel. It's really not hard to do if you're comfortable with working with electricity. One thing I do recommend is to do the work in the panel with the main service breaker/switch shut off. The protector I used is from the company that made my service panel, SquareD. It's an extra box that hangs off the bottom of my main service panel. It has 3 modules in it. The power module has a external indicator which I can see if the module is operating correctly. It also has a module for phone/telco lines and a cable/coax module. Each one can be replaced independently if they fail. The connection of the power part to the panel required a dual bus breaker. I think the install instructions recommended a 30A breaker. And the ground strap from the surge protector to be wired into the ground bus bar. This is where the excess power is going to be shunted. Other manufacturers have a more compact whole house surge protector which just snaps in like a normal breaker and you just wire in the ground strap. Cuttler Hammer makes them this way. The use of a whole house surge protector doesn't negate the need to use surge protectors though and is highly recommended.

As to batteries in UPS', I would not consider changing the battery out for something different from what the manufacturer intended/designed. The charging circuits are specific to the battery along with the intelligence in monitoring battery health. Some UPS manufacturers have recycling programs where they'll take your old UPS off your hands and give you credit towards buying a new one. APC has such a program. I have a mix of APC (home grade) and Emerson/Liebert/Vertiv (business grade) UPS' in my home.
 

isteppenwolf

Thread Starter
Joined
Jun 22, 2020
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18

isteppenwolf

Thread Starter
Joined
Jun 22, 2020
Messages
18
I've moved the thread to the Hardware forum. It could go there or also in the DIY forum but since it also involved running the computer I thought it would get more exposure in Hardware. When choosing a category it's important to make sure what you want to post is a good fit for that category. You posted this in the Tech Tips and Reviews forum while you're not posting any tips or reviews but asking for opinions.

As for the Generac, they are very good but you're talking big bucks. I'm not sure it protects against power surges but they have a separate whole home surge protector so be sure to verify that before making your decision. I know a bit about them because my neighbour has one that runs on propane. He needs it more to make sure his sump pumps run during power outages because he's only there on weekends and has a lot of water on his land so he pumps all year round. When the power goes off and I hear it come on then I know it's not just me who's affected. It also runs a test once a week for 10 minutes.

I couldn't find much on the run time for solar-powered version so I'd want to know that because the power could be off for days at times. Of course it will depend on the amount of energy it can get from the sun on any given day but if it's cloudy and raining and the power is out for a few days I'd want to be sure it can deliver.
Hi Cookie,

Thanks for explaining the move. Kiddeningly. as long as I don't have to sit in the corner ever time a post of mine get moved I'm actually okay with them being moved. I'm not now sure why I posted it where I first posted it but I do know that one that was moved the other day was interesting because I especially avoided posting it where it was moved to. My thinking for posting it in the forum that is open to virtually anything
( I apologize if that is way to liberal of an interpretation of that particular forum but if I recall I was confessing to being a laptop hoarder. I think it was moved to " security " I don't think it hurt anyone moving it but again I , as you have so kindly suggested , thought pretty hard about which forum to post it in.

If I can use a real example unrelated to computers at all and hopefully will create an example of how choice is related in part to POV. I purchased a house that has well water. I was very pleased that the 10 yo house did not have a water softener and in the crawl space there were 3 inline filters which the previous own said " it does the job " Man wells tap into an aquifer. Where I live in NC there is no aquifer within 1000 feet. Instead water trickles into a well through cracks in the rocks so in essence there are multiple sources so water quality changes with conditions about and below ground. My water was mostly acceptable. That said my white laundry and my white hair started taking on an orange tint. I still ( after 12 years don't have the perfect solution. I still do not have a softener which everyone and his brother suggests will fix the problem and they are not interested in why I am against the Culligan man. Imagine if you will a website on home ownership with forums similar to what we have here. If I wanted to ask the community about "FIXING" the water quality issue and posted in the FILTERS forum but someone with the keys to move the post, off the top of my head
( based on 12 years of having the county, the state, the town, individual " experts " and lets not forget the big and little hardware stores ) I have had enought stories to write a book. If I decided that I want to get the best water possible with all types of filter ( minus Culligan ) which would be why I chose the filter forum, I'm not sure having it moved to a forum that was called " The Best Water in The WORLD " would help me find the best filter system vs the best water on earth because in my posting i mention the health of our child. If you in your heart of hearts sincerely think that FILTERS will NEVER solve my problem and decide to move my post; i understand how your best intentions us for the human beings consuming the water I would thank you, praise you, appreciate you for doing what YOU think best and at the end of the day my insistence on solving the problem with filters is wrongheaded and fool hardy, what's the answer? Start a new forum to discuss human nature and or human belief systems?

I'm not putting you or anyone down for moving posts but in the case of that first post I wonder if " Confessions of a HOARDER might have been all that was needed to leave it where I posted it? As mentioned, it's not the end of the world I just for years have wondered why a discussion or negotiation might not feel better than just finding the post moved.

I THINK i know why I posted it there: It was a compound question and part of it had to do with this new to me Generac Solar/battery back up system AND modifying an older UPS with a car battery. In my mind
TECH TIPS and REVIEWS seemed near perfect since I did not find a popular forum about BATTERY BACK UPS such as APC, Tripp lite Cyberpower and I read MONSTER on this site after doing my surge protector search.

However look at all of the feedback that I received so THANK YOU!

PS My Mom's nickname is CookieLady and she too has an LP gas Generac that function exactly as you described. To the best of my knowledge Generac boast about a built in surge protector But her Sony TV will disagree with that.
 

Cookiegal

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The other thread was originally posted in the Random Discussion forum and was moved to the Hardware forum (not General Security) because you asked a technical question:
isteppenwolf said:
I purchased this HP in June of 2019 and Darrin has been removed but I left Floor Manager on and I have the password but I wondered after using it with my own name for so long if I risk an unrecoverable problem deleting FM?
Forum moves are always done in the poster's best interest so their topic gets the most views and as a result hopefully more replies.
 

isteppenwolf

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Joined
Jun 22, 2020
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The other thread was originally posted in the Random Discussion forum and was moved to the Hardware forum (not General Security) because you asked a technical question: Forum moves are always done in the poster's best interest so their topic gets the most views and as a result hopefully more replies.
Hey Cookie, I have no doubt that "Forum Moves" are NO DOUBT moved with the posters best interest in mind and even in heart. I'm also add here that it has never hurt me in any way that I know of if a post gets moved. I do think more than anything else, and I will only speak for myself that I get a feeling going back to my creative writing class when a word was "RED MARKED" for spelling or grammar and what I knew then beyond a shafow of doubt that THE INSTITUTIONAL way, policies, methods "CORRECTED" what I wrote which clearly indicated that in a metaphoric sorta way I was withnessing what latter would be called "SPELL CHECK or SPELL CHECKER"
Some algorithm FOUND FAULT in my work and 90% of the time the correction is welcomed. I gave the example of this dyslexic tic that I had with the word P E R H A P S almost always spelling it incorrectly. I really LOVED spell check every time it caught a corrected. In a manner of speaking it " moved " my word. I'm taking liberties now calling it " moved " so some readers might get my point and others might argue that it wasn't moved it was corrected. Why argue that? It's best to just let it go.

But one of my best mis-spells that always got corrected was my way of I L L U S T R A T I N G a meaning of a word in the way that I creatively spelled it. It really upset me that my "TEACHER" either didn't or couldn't see the " play on word(s) " which after a while became part of my style. Nothing I submitted was spared my attempts to find ways that I could "RE-LANGUAGE" what i wanted to say.

There's this old saying about " beating a dead horse " I don't want to beat a dead horse. I do want to ask as clearly as possible if it would ever be acceptable to make an effort to ask before moved. If I post in a forum that will likely hurt my chances of getting the reply I am seeking then a democracy allows us to make mistakes and be stupid. So if you ask me if I mind moving the post for these reasons I will most of the time agree with your suggestions, explanation and thinking....I might even learn how to see. If you read my first post I mention that I'm going blind and not for any of the reasons that NORMALLY doctors look for. Blind sucks! but to have your doctors laugh at you because "ALL OF THE BEST TESTS AND DOCTORS CAN'T FIND ANY REASON FOR THIS SO IT MUST BE ALL IN YOUR HEAD" Moving my post is easy to take. Being laughed at just because nothing has yet to be found gets me angry and I told both doctors. Now they've stopped laughing but I'm pretty sure they still think it is all in my head. July 15 may SHOW them what they have missed.

And BTW the play on words that got corrected often was my way of spelling INTIMACY

I changed it to InToMeSee i confess that until I capitalized the letter of each word they saw intomesee.

I do hope you SEE my point. Mean while let's MOVE ON! <VBG>

Thanks for your help and dedication to us all in these matters of computer problems
 

Cookiegal

Karen
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I do want to ask as clearly as possible if it would ever be acceptable to make an effort to ask before moved.
I'm sorry but that's not how forums work. We move several threads every day and if we had to contact everyone and then wait for them to reply (if they do) it would be too time-consuming and difficult to manage.
If I post in a forum that will likely hurt my chances of getting the reply I am seeking then a democracy allows us to make mistakes and be stupid.
and a democary also allows us to correct those mistakes.

If you want to discuss how forums work further then I suggest you contact me privately (start a Personal Conversation) as this is taking the thread completely off-topic.
 

isteppenwolf

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Joined
Jun 22, 2020
Messages
18
I'm sorry but that's not how forums work. We move several threads every day and if we had to contact everyone and then wait for them to reply (if they do) it would be too time-consuming and difficult to manage.and a democary also allows us to correct those mistakes.

If you want to discuss how forums work further then I suggest you contact me privately (start a Personal Conversation) as this is taking the thread completely off-topic.
Will do, thanks
 

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