Sizing, location, features and cost are all an important part of getting a UPS fit for purpose.

For many businesses, choosing UPS systems can seem like a minefield and for the uninformed, it's hard to know where to begin. Whether you're a small start-up business with one computer or a large enterprise with a sophisticated data centre, this blog from our experts here at Power Control will ensure that you ask the right questions when you're choosing your backup power supply.

If you know what equipment you want to back up already then why not complete a quick search on our UPS product selector to help you find the product that you need.

What equipment do you need to protect with your UPS system?

When choosing a UPS system the first thing you need to question is what equipment your business has that needs protecting. This will often be items that are essential for  business continuity, such as servers with valuable data or important cashier or security systems. Other businesses may wish to back up expensive equipment where a safe shut down is essential such as computers or technical machinery.

What is the item's electrical draw?

Once you know what equipment you need to protect you'll need to work out what its electrical draw is. Normally you'll find this by looking on the label on the rear of your device where it will be listed in either watts, amps or volt amps (VA). A quick Google search will often find this out for you if you can't find the power draw on the item itself.

How long will your protected items need power in an emergency?

This again will depend on the items that a business is looking to protect, the power they require and an individual business's needs. For some businesses, they may simply need to perform a safe shut down on one computer, whilst others may require the computer to run for the rest of a business day before shutting it down. Obviously th, longer the equipment needs the bigger the load it will have on any UPS system.

How critical is the equipment that you want to protect?

There are three UPS system profiles that describe the levels of protection offered. The first is offline UPS systems which act as a battery back-up and are mainly for home use. For professional use you'll require a Line Interactive system - the minimum level of protection that Power Control offers.

Line interactive uninterruptible power supplies protect higher end equipment offering automatic voltage regulation and power surge protection. Just like the basic offline UPS systems, it protects from power surges and spikes by keeping the power output to your device at a regular level. Whilst if power goes out your UPS will take over. The amount of output available from a line interactive UPS depends on the size of it.

The top level of UPS protection comes from online double conversion UPS systems. As the top level of uninterruptible power supply on the market they can be used to protect equipment that is critical to your business. These UPS systems provide a pure sine wave electrical supply to your item with zero switch over time. Online double conversion UPS are used to support critical loads such as data centres, IT suites and any load susceptible to mains fluctuations.

The final question that you should have the answer to before deciding on which UPS system is right for you, is how much space do you have? UPS systems come in a range of shapes and sizes, you may require a number of smaller systems distributed around the office or one large system. UPS systems come in the form of towers or rack mounts.