For years people have been wondering if it makes sense to plug a UPS into a surge protector. There hasn’t been a definitive answer since some folks recommend plugging a UPS into a surge protector, while others do not. Now, the answer to this question is not an easy one and there are good reasons for that.
Everyone has their reason why a UPS should be connected to a surge protector or not, and from what we have seen thus far, each side of the spectrum has solid points. So, we are going to share with you all the information needed to make a concise decision.
Should UPS be plugged into Surge Protector?
Knowing whether or not one should plug a UPS into a surge protector is important. The following information will help you decide:
What is a UPS?
For those who are new to the platform, UPS stands for Uninterruptible Power Supply, and it is a device that provides battery backup to any equipment that is connected to it, for example, a computer. You see, whenever there is a power failure, the UPS will kick in it to ensure your computer does not shut down abruptly.
The user will then have a few minutes or hours to complete what they were doing, and then perform a typical shutdown of the computer without worries. Additionally, we should note that most UPS devices come packed with Automatic Voltage Regulation, a feature designed to protect your computer from unstable electricity.
What is a surge protector?
OK, so a surge protector is a product that is similar to a power strip, but much better. This device has the ability to protect the computer and any other connected device from sudden spikes in electricity. Spikes tend to happen when the power goes away but returns seconds after. If your many electric hardware is not protected, then they could experience unreversible damage.
Some manufacturers agree with plugging your UPS into a surge protector
Several manufacturers have made it clear that users can plug their UPS into a surge protector if they want to. This goes against popular opinion, but from our point of view, it makes a lot of sense, so let us explain why that is.
Here’s the thing, UPS systems are not just battery backups to keep your computer from shutting down abruptly. They also come with surge protection built-in, and this feature meets the IEEE Standard, so most will believe all UPS systems already have this feature, so why plug them into a third-party product?
Well, the level of surge protection provided by most UPS products, according to Eaton, a popular UPS manufacturer, is second rate at best, and as such, must not be viewed as a primary means of protecting connected devices.
So, at the end of the day, a standalone surge protector is required because even the UPS device needs protection from spikes in electricity as well.
Other manufacturers say no to surge protection
When it comes down to those who are against using a surge protector with a UPS device, two companies known as APC and UPS Solutions had a few things to say on the matter.
They believe plugging your UPS into a surge protector could cause faster battery wear. This is because the UPS when plugged into a surge protector, can switch to battery power mode without a failure in the grid, or due to uneven power distribution.
The problem is, the above only happens when heavy appliances are connected to the extra outlets on the surge protector. Therefore, it is safe to assume that if a UPS is plugged into a surge protector that does not contain other electronics, things should run just fine.
Should everything be plugged into a surge protector?
No, there are many equipment that do not require a surge protector, or you should use a surge protector with them. However, you could use a surge protector to protect your UPS from unnecessary fluctuations. It is suggested to go through this article to know more about the surge protector and UPS combination. Also, if your UPS manufacturer has not provided any concrete information on the matter, then ensure the surge protector does not contain other connections outside of the UPS, especially the ones that demand a lot of electric power.
READ: Difference Between UPS & Inverter – Which is better?
What should you never plug into a surge protector?
UPS systems are great, but they were not built for equipment that uses a lot of power to work. Folks should be wary of any device which exceeds the unit’s VA/Watt rating or else the battery will be drained much faster than expected. Some of the equipment to avoid are as follows:
- Laser printers
- Space heaters
- Paper shredders
- Curling irons
Never plug them into your UPS if you want the best possible performance from the device.