Maximizing Battery Performance Through Correct Installation Procedures

Reliable Preventative Maintenance

Consider you have a reliable preventive maintenance program in place for your UPS’s Valve Regulated Lead Acid batteries. These batteries undergo biannual inspections and all data is thoroughly reviewed, with a detailed report sent to you. The most recent report alerted you that your batteries are approaching their fifth year and it’s time to budget for replacements.

As a responsible custodian of your finances, you seek proposals from multiple vendors in the hopes of minimizing costs. However, should you base your decision solely on cost? Are all vendors who have sent you proposals truly qualified to do the work?

Improper battery installation is often challenging to detect and usually remains unresolved until an issue arises. If untrained personnel replace the batteries, crucial steps may be missed, and the ramifications of these missteps may not become apparent until a major problem arises, such as a load drop during a power outage or even a fire. The best way to prevent this and ensure reliable and safe power back up is hiring the right company to take care of your investment

Basic Battery Install 

Proper power system battery installation necessitates trained and qualified personnel who follow a detailed procedure. The following list is not exhaustive of all the steps that must be taken for a proper battery installation, but it lays a solid foundation:

  1. Batteries must be tested before installation, including checking the open cell voltage and internal resistance or impedance. This ensures that the battery being installed is in good working order.
  2. The terminals should be cleaned of any oxidation, and a no ox grease should be applied. Oxidation increases the connection’s resistance between the link and the battery post, resulting in heat and decreased battery performance.
  3. All connections should be torqued according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Using a calibrated torque wrench ensures that the connections are tight and prevents the hardware from being overtightened, causing damage to the battery post.
  4. Before re-energizing the battery system, a thorough inspection of the battery system is critical. This inspection includes a visual inspection and a physical metering of the system. CEA wants to prevent a ground fault which results in an unintentional flow of electricity to the ground.  This can result in an arc flash, fire, damage to the system, trigger alarms, or cause a breaker to trip when it becomes energized.
  5. Before re-energizing the battery system, both the technician who wired the system and a second technician should perform a visual inspection. Looking for loose connections, missing hardware, and check to ensure the batteries were wired in the correct configuration. CEA provides a double verification of proper installation and significantly reduces the likelihood of a mistake going overlooked.
  6. After the system has been re-energized, several additional readings should be taken to ensure the batteries are functioning correctly. The overall battery voltage should be measured to determine whether the batteries are being charged to their optimal voltage. To ensure that their lifespan isn’t compromised and result in additional complications.

Selecting a Vendor

When selecting a vendor to replace your telecom battery, it’s crucial to consider more than just the cost. A thorough evaluation of all vendor qualifications should be a significant part of your qualifying criteria. This extra upfront work will not only give you peace of mind but will also save you money and protect your investment.  At CEA our technicians are in house, trained by us, and take pride in what they do.  We truly want to take care of our customers.  When you purchase high quality batteries and equipment from us we want to ensure you get the best output from that equipment.  Which is why we highly recommend using our technicians for your install.

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