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Fan Information!

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murattoh_apc
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390

Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 8/3/2009


I have this APC UPS, MADE IN INDIA BANGOLORE, MOD: SURT 2000 XLI, S/N: JS0720021614 ...The warranty period of 2 years will be over in the coming 1-2 months! And I have a feeling that as soon as the warranty period is over I will need 🙂 ; All the technical detailed information about the two fans, fan sizes, required voltage, CFM, if it is placed in a casing, etc... No need to add I am very pleased with the UPS, I did not even have one power problem since 2 years, but I really would be very much pleased if APC had been more creative about this noisy fan problem! You see people places these units to their rooms in their houses recently, not only to the offices as in the past!
Thanks to everybody for their help!


Accepted Solutions
Javik_apc
Lieutenant JG
Lieutenant JG
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/17/2011


While APC employees on this forum may not help you with explicit repair information, the moderators here don't seem to slap down us rebel end-user types that come on these forums and talk about do-it-yourself repair information. For example I can say this without the post magically disappearing...

,

APC seems to love internal fans that can not be replaced by the end-user. This is basically planned obsolescence, because the fans could almost always be designed to be a user-serviceable drop-in replacement, but since it is not if you want full warranty coverage you are forced into replacing the entire unit, just to get a new $15 fan.

to replace a fan yourself, practice common-sense repair methods: De-energize all components, discharge residual current where possible, and document what you are taking apart.
1. Disconnect power cord
2. Disconnect batteries
3. Attempt to turn on UPS to discharge residual current
4. Grab a digital camera and snap some photos of the screws as you take it apart. Separate screws into small containers so you don't mix them up later.

Fans are often easily replaced by the end-user. Just look for a model number, type it into your favorite search engine, and look for some big electronics parts company with it like Digi-Key, Mouser, or Jameco.

If you can't buy the fan with the matching connector, cut off the plug from the old fan with several inches/cm of wire still attached, solder the wires onto the same colors as your new fan, and use shrinkwrap tube to seal the soldering for a professional look that probably even APC repair techs won't notice as a user-replacement.

- Javik

See Answer In Context

14 Replies 14
Erasmus_apc
Sisko
Sisko
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 8/4/2009


APC cannot give out technical information regarding construction of the unit or detailed technical specs (outside of some power-based information). Another customer on the forums or on the web is more than welcome to offer the info to you.

murattoh_apc
Ensign
Ensign
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 8/4/2009


Dear Erasmus, I know the APC behaviour and replies to such questions! But on the other hand I think that APC behaviour really and very seriously restricts customer feed-back, but I can send you my reply in full if only you can send me your e-mail address! Thank you for the reply but naturally this is not exactly what I want!

Message was edited by: murattoh

Message was edited by: murattoh

Erasmus_apc
Sisko
Sisko
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 8/6/2009


It does not restrict customer feed back, we allow customers to give whatever feed back they wish and we give them all the feedback we are allowed to give. We do not give out information on construction of the UPS or internal parts because:

1) Giving the customer such information can lead to dangerous modification (either to the customer themselves or their equipment) which we would then be liable for.

2) The design of the product is proprietary, and the rights to it and the distribution thereof are the property of APC and at our discretion.

3) Consistently giving information to customers for repairing UPS' can impact a good business system. Yes that seems selfish, but good revenue and business models aren't based off of never requiring replacement purchases, accessories, and services to be made or undercutting those items.

I can tell you this, and you will probably be able to figure it out anyway by looking at the fan: it is an 80mm ROHS 3-pin fan, and is made by one of the following companies (differs per manufacture date/location so I cannot tell on any single unit): Sunon, HICool Electronics, Delta Products Corp., or Adda Fan & Motor Ltd.

murattoh_apc
Ensign
Ensign
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 8/7/2009


Thanks for the explanation, especially for the last two lines! I can understand APC's reasons, but please do not expect me to agree with these!
And please note that I am not asking for a full repair information, all I want is some silence, something less noisy! If APC could do something about it I would want it from APC local office of course.
If I need some more information I will not hesitate to ask again!:)

murattoh_apc
Ensign
Ensign
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/17/2011


When I need I return to the forum from time to time. Although this question question of mine has not been answered yet it is very nice to see that somethings have changed in the forum. Some questions that could not be answered two years ago can be discussed now.

Javik_apc
Lieutenant JG
Lieutenant JG
0 Likes
0
391

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/17/2011


While APC employees on this forum may not help you with explicit repair information, the moderators here don't seem to slap down us rebel end-user types that come on these forums and talk about do-it-yourself repair information. For example I can say this without the post magically disappearing...

,

APC seems to love internal fans that can not be replaced by the end-user. This is basically planned obsolescence, because the fans could almost always be designed to be a user-serviceable drop-in replacement, but since it is not if you want full warranty coverage you are forced into replacing the entire unit, just to get a new $15 fan.

to replace a fan yourself, practice common-sense repair methods: De-energize all components, discharge residual current where possible, and document what you are taking apart.
1. Disconnect power cord
2. Disconnect batteries
3. Attempt to turn on UPS to discharge residual current
4. Grab a digital camera and snap some photos of the screws as you take it apart. Separate screws into small containers so you don't mix them up later.

Fans are often easily replaced by the end-user. Just look for a model number, type it into your favorite search engine, and look for some big electronics parts company with it like Digi-Key, Mouser, or Jameco.

If you can't buy the fan with the matching connector, cut off the plug from the old fan with several inches/cm of wire still attached, solder the wires onto the same colors as your new fan, and use shrinkwrap tube to seal the soldering for a professional look that probably even APC repair techs won't notice as a user-replacement.

- Javik

BillP
Administrator Administrator
Administrator
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390

Re: Fan Information!

This reply was originally posted by Angela on APC forums on 3/17/2011


while we won't delete it, it is definitely done at your own risk. i don't directly have any say in fan replacement but on a lot of units, i know they don't have serviceable fans since there could be a liability factor of customers swapping out fans and hurting themselves by inadvertently touching any of the internal UPS components that may be present near the fan inside the unit's case.

now, while some of us are very technical and see this as a very silly reason to not have the fan user serviceable, that is one of the main reasons i believe. plus, how can we warranty a unit when someone opens it up and does who knows what in it when they claim they just swapped the fan.

i dont know - just my two cents. if you know what you're doing, go for it but just know you are on your own.

murattoh_apc
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/17/2011


Thank you Javik. That question was asked two years ago and I had already solved the problem with a few drops of oil, but I am sure that your reply will help others coping with the same problem.

murattoh_apc
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Ensign
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/17/2011


And thank you Angela for not deleting Javik's reply. I think this would not have been the case two years ago, nice to see that APC has changed company politics in favour of customers at the forum. Of course you are correct from your point of view. But on my side; I am from Turkey, and as there is not a repair service company of APC at the city I live in, I must send my APC to another city, with a total cost of 80USD as a start. Too much for a simple fan replacement.
I must add that the fan used by APC was one of the best ones of its kind. So I could solve the noise problem by putting a few drops of oil instead of changing it completely.

BillP
Administrator Administrator
Administrator
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This reply was originally posted by Angela on APC forums on 3/17/2011


yes, i understand your side as well 🙂

BillP
Administrator Administrator
Administrator
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This reply was originally posted by Angela on APC forums on 3/11/2013


Keep in mind the majority of our consumer level items are not user-serviceable besides the replaceable battery. I tend to agree with you that some "power" users might think this is silly but on the other hand, there are users out there that do not have the expertise to replace the fans. Also, depending on usage and environment, a fan may never need to be replaced. When the UPS is out of warranty though, a user can do anything they want, including replacing the fans if they have the expertise. I urge caution though for any users attempting this and remind everyone to fully power down your UPS and remove it from AC power as well as remove the battery to eliminate any potential hazards.

zander13_apc
Crewman
Crewman
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/11/2013


I would like to add a comment to this.  I have a Back UPS 1500 XS with LCD screen which I have been happy with along with past products from APC.  However when one of the fans recently started making noise I called them up and asked for a replacement.  They said the fan cannot be replaced, so I should get a new unit... what?!?!  All this plastic and printed circuit boards and inverter and batteries should be thrown out because of a $13 fan?

There are only 2 moving parts in this whole thing (both fans) and I was baffled that they would not make these easily replaceable.  Even without the money issue the environmental implications of this are insane.

I pulled the back off and then took out the fan and and found the manufacturer in China by typing in the part number (Jamicon KF0420B2MM-R).  Unfortunately that manufacturer does not seem to sell fans in the US market retail so then I took the specs and found the most similar fans on Digi-Key I could.  I ordered two of them (one with overcurrent alarm and the other with tach output) and when I got them saw that the wire color matched for the o/c alarm one so I soldered it in.  This was Digikey part# 1053-1414-ND, Orion Part number OD4020-24HB02A FAN DC 40X20 24V W/ O/C ALARM

Put it all together and its now working fine.  This will be the last of these units I purchase until they correct this simple design flaw.

Battman_apc
Commander
Commander
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/13/2013


As with any part that APC sources from multiple vendors, with Fans your "mileage may vary". The 4" fans found in Symmetra's, 3U Smart-UPS etc are spec'd at around 80,000 hours bearing life (which  mean they could go for 8 or 9 years or even longer!). But, as Angela says, environment and usage has a big impact... both dust, UPS load, and site electrical conditions can have a big impact.

My main bit of advice for maximizing fan life is to blow or better yet, physically clean the dust off the cooling fan blades when it starts to build up. If you don't remove it, it acts to throw off the balance of the fan , causing oscillations that wear out the bearings; just like an unbalanced tire on your car causes tire wear. CAUTION: If you are using compressed air to clean cooling fan blades, make sure you hold the blades and do not let the fan spin wildly; if the fan spins it could actually act as a generator and blow the driver circuits in the UPS that power it.

One oddball thing I have heard evidence of is that under high load conditions, or with certain UPS architectures, the high frequency oscillations of the inverter circuits mechanically being coupled to the fans could actually be causing the fan bearing lubricant to turn to dust and the fan seizes...I have taken apart several fans in a post-mortem where reddish oxide-like particles come out and the bearing is totally dry and wondered what was up with that!

With higher ups load, every self test or on battery operation causes a deeper discharge of the batteries, meaning the inverter/charger circuit cooling fan in the ups runs in high speed mode during recharge for longer periods of time before it settles back down to trickle/maintenance mode.

murattoh_apc
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391

Re: Fan Information!

This was originally posted on APC forums on 3/14/2013


Nice to see valuable information still coming since 4 years, and I hope APC is getting the message. Fan and noise problem is really disturbing for the customers.

And thank you Battman for very interesting information, I have not met these anywhere before, As I clean my other fan bearing equipment frequently I had not noticed such a dirt build up in the fans. But for my UPS fans, I had wondered what the reddish, oily-muddy dirt below the identification label was? And another astonishment was finding the fans without any oil, although since nearly 4 years after my warranty period was over, I had been lubricating the fans in 8-10 months intervals, finding them without any oil every time! And "throwing off the balance of the fun", is interesting again, I had not think this way, generally accepting simply dust slows down the fan because it is dust!

Another problem is APC is very strict in their choices! I could not find any better or less silent fan with the same or very similar spesifications of my UPS fan. So I had to buy the same ADDA fans but this time I will be lubricating as soon as they arrive! And as an APC customer I would prefer to have at least 1 mm. of place, I can not even place a rubber fan silencer behind one of my fans!

I can understand APC of course, many people can be harmed while changing fans, but still I believe that there are things they can do to make life easier for us!