This was originally posted on APC forums on 1/9/2008
It wasn't that much of a storm, barely 50 knots of cold, wet wind, and a few inches of rain. I've weathered Arctic and North Atlantic storms that would suck you from 100 feet down, surface the main deck, and freight train you right back to depth, while you are walking on the bulkheads - er, walls - trying not to spill your coffee. And I've been lookout at night, on the surface during a Caribbean hurricane, hammered with walls of water. But it was quite a storm for these mountains - I heard 150 power poles were snapped in this Northern California county alone, along with thousands of trees and fences. Another neighbor wasn't as lucky as we are - one large tree crashed into his kitchen, and another missed one of his sons by a couple of feet.
Last Friday, about 10AM I had just made another walk around my forest, checking for hazards and damage, while keeping a wary eye on tall pines, whipping about with unlikely ferocity. Plenty of branches down, but no damage. I had just pulled off my rain gear and settled back at my laptop when the lights went out, and I was greeted with a small beeping rather than silence. My years-old APC UPS kept the satellite earth station beaming data back and forth, while we finished some work and shutdown the server, desktop, and network. Then down with the laptops. Some long time later the UPS battery gave a last sigh, and the displays winked out. Sweet - I do love it when a plan survives the real world.
Two days later, Sunday arrived with no power restoration on the horizon. I obtained a generator, and became Kotan Power and Light. I know that most generators make crummy power, but it was with little hesitation that I plugged the UPS into the generator. APC is a brand I've come to trust for surge and brownout protection. My neighbor scolded me, telling me I must be mad. "You should never connect computers and TVs - anything electronic - to a generator - they'll blow up!" I can't disagree with him - it's not the first time I've been told I'm way out on the foolhardy side of brave. But I have a UPS on the entertainment system, too. It's an APC as well, as are a fair number of surge protected power strips scattered about. "It's just for a day or two. What could go wrong?", says I with a grin.
We've had nearly six inches of rain since Friday, and the power was only out a half week, which is not a record for our mountain home. Being far from town, we stay prepared. I was happy to be able to work on Monday, thanks to a friend's generator and my confidence in APC equipment.
This note of thanks was prompted by the arrival today of the APC Availability Advisor, with a cover declaring: "Zero. That's how many of your customers will be satisfied when their aging UPS battery fails". I should have replaced the batteries in my UPS's long ago. But I lucked out. I'd rather believe that I was rewarded for my wisdom in buying the best. I am getting batteries for these puppies, and real soon.
We often complain, but say thanks not often enough. Mine is a simple tale, but you've saved lives, careers, and entire businesses just by doing what you do best.
Again, thanks to everyone at APC.
Discuss challenges in energy and automation with 30,000+ experts and peers.
Find answers in 10,000+ support articles to help solve your product and business challenges.
Find peer based solutions to your questions. Provide answers for fellow community members!