An expensive strategy among some of the industry’s UPS manufacturers regarding UPS maintenance could limit your servicing options. A closer look into the UPS systems currently available on the market today can help to protect your business from a costly mistake.
We know that in order to protect your investment in mission critical power backup equipment, routine maintenance is paramount. As an independent service provider, we have a chance to interact with multiple UPS system manufacturers and over time, we start to see trends in UPS system architect and design.
In the past, most UPS manufacturers exhibited an open architecture that not only allowed their own organization to service the product, but also third party service organizations. However, things have since changed.
“Closed Architecture” Structure Limits Choice, Increases Price
Today, there are currently over 50 various manufacturers of UPS systems. Of those, some of the newer products are developed by the top three manufacturers, each of which do not support the open architecture concept.
How is this potentially detrimental to you? When a manufacturer retains the proprietary software, it can greatly increase maintenance cost and limit response time in the event of a catastrophe. Typically this information is not provided to third party service organizations or to you, the owner.
One example is something as simple as a nuisance battery reminder that some manufacturers will design and require software to reset, making a simple battery replacement more expensive than necessary and limiting your options for service providers.
While QPS can help overcome these types of alarms and obstacles, it is important for the end user to be aware of the impact this type of UPS system may have on the overall lifecycle cost of the unit.
Along with minimizing your service options, this strategy will typically increase your costs associated with service and software updates, as limited choice generally results in higher prices.
How to Protect Yourself
Clearly, this is a troubling trend for consumers. Knowledge is power, and we can make a few recommendations that can decrease the risk of proprietary software:
- If possible, purchase a power system that supports an open architecture concept.
- Find a power solutions provider who can work within these limitations.
- Consider purchasing a system from a brand-neutral power solutions provider, not from the manufacturer directly. This ensures the system best fits your power needs, remains within your budget, and optimizes your service options.