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Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

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Pwolf_apc
Crewman
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Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This was originally posted on APC forums on 11/4/2015


Greetings, I have a rather old Smart-UPS 1000XL with one auxiliary battery. 
Current Status: 
It currently has one LED lit for load (I presume this is somewhere in the 20% range).  There is an HP server, 3 HP 24 port fanless switches, 1 small NAS box, a cable modem and a small firewall plugged in to it.  It is not currently connected to a device that runs Powerchute. 
When we lose power it functions as it is supposed to.  It goes on to battery, lights and alarms accordingly, and usually with an hour or so, we have power restored, or we start generator power.  We have never gone long enough to have it run out of battery (at least in the last 4 years). 
My Issue:
It took me a long time to isolate the issue I am having with it. Up to now it has worked just fine. In the last 3-4 weeks, this has happened 5 times.  Once on a Tuesday 3 times on a Wednesday and once on a Friday.  four of those times it happened as exactly 11:00 AM.  One time was at exactly 6:00PM. 
The UPS may or may not alarm. More often it does not.  The server, firewall, cable modem and NAS box all lose power and restart as evidenced by their respective event logs.  Thankfully, the server has redundant power supplies so it doesn't go down, it just writes to the event log that it lost power to power supply number 2 (the one that is plugged in to the UPS. The other one is plugged directly into wall power). The HP switches are unmanageable so I can't tell if they reboot or not. 
What I have done:
I have installed a RoomAlert 3 Power monitoring device on the UPS.  It is by no means a "precision" device, but it detects a loss of power and sends an email alert when triggered.  Whatever this UPS is doing is happening so quickly that the RoomAlert 3 does not detect it. 
I have moved all the devices except the NAS box over to a new-ish Smart-UPS 1000 with digital display that has been functioning fine. The 1000xl is still operational, but not powering anything mission critical, and is still having the issue. (The NAS box is still connected to it).
What I have noticed:
The 1000xl is warm to the touch and the fan on the side of it NEVER runs.   I suspect the fan (or whatever powers it) is dead and i will begin troubleshooting when i get a response or two from the forum. 
My questions:
1. The new UPS (a Smart-UPS 1000) with digital display is working just fine with this equipment on it.  I also hear the fan on the side of it coming on and going off frequently.  Should the fan on the 1000xl be coming on just as frequently?  What are the conditions that tell the fan to run? 
2. Any other thoughts as to the issue? I am banking on it being an overheating issue and hopefully fixing the fan will resolve it. 
Any input on my situation welcome. 
Thank you.

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BillP
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Re: Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This reply was originally posted by Tom on APC forums on 11/6/2015


Paul,

Good to hear about the unit. The batteries are connected in parallel so they drain and charge equally.

Tom 

See Answer In Context

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BillP
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Re: Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This reply was originally posted by Tom on APC forums on 11/4/2015


Hey Paul,

Sorry to hear that you are having some trouble. This one is a little odd.

First can you please provide your exact model and serial number, they are located near the back of the unit on a white label with a bar code.

Second when you say “Once on a Tuesday 3 times on a Wednesday and once on a Friday. four of those times it happened as exactly 11:00 AM. One time was at exactly 6:00PM.” Is there anything that happens at the time near the unit, i.e. motors or equipment start up, something that would make power dip?

Third has the unit passed a self test recently? 

  • Press and Hold the "I test" or power button for a few second until the self-test starts.

You can try and "Cold Start" the unit to see if it can power up on battery: 

  • Unplug the Smart-UPS from the wall
  • Press and hold the power button (labeled I/Test on SU and SUA units)
  • Let go of the button during the long beep
  • UPS will cycle through a self test and come up on battery

My first thoughts on the overheating is that you probably have and older battery, have you ever replaced it?

Also check of this Knowledge Base document: 

http://www2.schneider-electric.com/sites/corporate/en/support/faq/faq_main.page?page=content&country...

We will get this figured out!

Cheers, Tom

Pwolf_apc
Crewman
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Re: Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This was originally posted on APC forums on 11/4/2015


Hi Tom, Thanks for the reply. 

Ok. One at a time 

  1. Model SUA1000xl SN AS0431332185 
  1. Nothing close by. We’re in a small brick office building. No HVAC, Elevators, Heavy machinery etc in the building or nearby.

 Self test ran and chirped for a minute or two while the red “replace battery” light came on. Which battery is it testing? Internal or external? 

  1. Attempted Cold start 5 times. The first 2 times, it tried to power up, the green “online” and red “overload” LEDs (nothing plugged in to it) flashed for less than a second, then it shut off and the very bottom green “battery charge” LED flashed continuously. The next 3 times, it started up fine and the yellow “on battery” LED came on, and the bottom two battery LEDs came on and it beeped 4 times every 30 seconds. It is still doing this as I write, so it has been up for about 20 minutes and counting thus far.    Though we are down to one battery LED at this time.   No, I take that back.  I just now heard the fans increase in speed, and I looked over and saw that there are now THREE  green “battery charge” LEDs on. Did the external battery just kick in?  I wish I knew how these things worked. 
  1. The fan is running at high speed so at least we know that it works. 
  1. I have not replaced either battery in the 4 years I have been here. I do not think the external battery was purchased at the same time as the Smart-USP itself. I think it is newer. 

My concerns are  If the unit is in fact defective, I don’t want to invest in a battery (or two) if I am not absolutely certain it will solve the issue.  As I mentioned above, this unit (historically) has supported all the above mentioned devices for a decent amount of time when we lose power.  

Hopefully all this helps.  Thanks.

BillP
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Re: Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This reply was originally posted by Tom on APC forums on 11/4/2015


Paul,

What lights do you see illuminated when the unit is in its normal configuration? 

Could we run a test? Plug in something non-critical that would reset if it were to see a short dip in power and do a "pull plug" or simulated power outage. I am wondering if the transfer time is to long.

Also it doesn't seem to be the batteries. Since you can run on batteries and it passes a self-test.

Tom

Pwolf_apc
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Re: Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This was originally posted on APC forums on 11/5/2015


Hi Tom, 

1. Online, 1 load LED 5 Battery charge LED (now).

2. Did that with the NAS box and it stayed up and running

3. I believe it IS the battery.  I found another 1000xl.  A much newer one showing 2 battery charge LEDs.  I put the battery from it in the 1000xl we are discussing (the "problem") one, and it showed  3 battery charge LEDs. I let it sit overnight in the "problem" 1000xl, and when I came in this AM it was at 5 battery charge LEDs.  I put a small load on it (the NAS box), and pulled the plug on it.  It started beeping 4x every 30 seconds (like it should), the "on battery" LED and fan come on (as they should), and after an hour's time it dropped to 4 battery charge LEDs.  The NAS box did not go down or reboot. Conversely, I put the "problem" battery in the newer 1000xl, and it wouldn't even come on. I believe a new internal battery should solve my issue.

Like most things computer related, one triumph leads to more question(s).   

I need to know how the 1000xl uses (and charges) the internal battery as well as the external one.  Based on my response #4 above here is how *I* think it works.  Please let me know either way.

I think that when the 1000xl loses input power, and starts providing battery power to the devices (see #4 above. Fans increased and battery charge increased all by itself). it draws from the internal battery first, then when the internal battery gets to or below a pre-determined threshold, it switches over to the auxiliary battery and starts providing out power to the devices from there. 

And when the UPS is connected to input power, it charges both batteries at the same time.

Am I close? 

Thanks Tom.

Thanks. 

BillP
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Re: Older Smart-UPS 1000xl Intermittent loss of output power

This reply was originally posted by Tom on APC forums on 11/6/2015


Paul,

Good to hear about the unit. The batteries are connected in parallel so they drain and charge equally.

Tom