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UPS online vs line-interactive : BATTERY LIFESPAN differences?

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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 03:08 PM - Thread Starter
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UPS online vs line-interactive : BATTERY LIFESPAN differences?

simple question but unable to get a clear answer by googling

is is true that the batteries of line-in UPS always have much shorter lifespan then the batteries of online (more expensive) UPS?

and if so WHY?
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 03:22 PM
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The lower end ones click in fully whenever the voltage goes out of range, fully using the battery itself and dropping off the actual power line. The on-line ups's only draw what they have to from the battery system, to make up the difference. Unless power is fully gone, in which case it is the same.

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 04:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by AllenG View Post
The lower end ones click in fully whenever the voltage goes out of range
that's the offline UPS you're talking about (aka. standby UPS) not line-interactive


there's 3 types of UPS:

- offline (the low end cheapest)
- line-in
- online (most expensive)

we already know that batteries of both online & line-interactive UPS last longer than those of offline UPS

Quote:
The on-line ups's only draw what they have to from the battery system, to make up the difference.
same for the line-interactive ones they too can regulate voltage without using the battery


hence my question: do batteries from online UPS also last longer than those of line-interactive (not offline) UPS?

and if so why?
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 05:17 PM
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Online UPS's do constant inversion, they bring in the AC, convert it to DC through the battery circuit, then dump back out to AC. Effectively the online ups batteries are in constant use at their topped off point. The line interactive clicks in just like an offline does but doesn't always switch to full battery, it does not do the AC-DC-AC conversion so it is not constantly using the batteries. The batteries are topped, and sit, with periodic cycling and re-topping. Batteries don't like to sit, ones that are constantly used but kept within their top 75% of charge will exhibit longer life cycles... why the online lasts longer. The real battery life in a full power out situation is about the same for all of them though. If you have a generator system that switches in and maybe cant quite keep the load voltage at 120, the online is also awesome as it will make up the difference down to ~70V, but not kill the UPS. Allowing you to keep more voltage sensitive equipment like servers online with barely or not enough power available. Most line interactive and offline at ~90V drops the ac line and switches to full battery.

As far as i'm concerned personally, the line-interactive systems don't exist. I'd go straight to Online if these were needs for my situation. Otherwise, the offline will do just fine and expect to replace the batteries. It's cheaper in the long run.

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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-31-2018, 11:09 PM - Thread Starter
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k thx for the info I didn't know that batteries dont like to "rest" at full (I always thought the opposite)

a few more questions then ^^

1) wouldn't a simple solution be for the line-in UPS to stop the charging when the battery's at 80% or something? the effective capacity & autonomy would be lower in case of power outage but the battery would last longer

2) for the online this means the battery's being charged & discharged at the same time? I didn't know that was possible for a battery (so this means online UPS batteries are special & can't be used in a line-in UPS or vice-versa?)

3) what about brown-outs don't line-in UPS protect the PC better then offline UPS against brown-outs?

4) also battery output ain't it (usually) better quality in line-in UPS? at least higher end ones (high end line-in UPS => true sine wave but any offline UPS only spits out stepped sine wave which iirc can be dangerous for some PSU's)



and finally...5) if a UPS is of the online type does it by definition automatically imply that it outputs sinewave? or can there be such a thing as an online UPS with only stepped sine wave (eg. iif the manufacturer wanna save costs)
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-01-2019, 03:37 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by pulverizor View Post
k thx for the info I didn't know that batteries dont like to "rest" at full (I always thought the opposite)

a few more questions then ^^

1) wouldn't a simple solution be for the line-in UPS to stop the charging when the battery's at 80% or something? the effective capacity & autonomy would be lower in case of power outage but the battery would last longer


2) for the online this means the battery's being charged & discharged at the same time? I didn't know that was possible for a battery (so this means online UPS batteries are special & can't be used in a line-in UPS or vice-versa?)


3) what about brown-outs don't line-in UPS protect the PC better then offline UPS against brown-outs?


4) also battery output ain't it (usually) better quality in line-in UPS? at least higher end ones (high end line-in UPS => true sine wave but any offline UPS only spits out stepped sine wave which iirc can be dangerous for some PSU's)



and finally...5) if a UPS is of the online type does it by definition automatically imply that it outputs sinewave? or can there be such a thing as an online UPS with only stepped sine wave (eg. iif the manufacturer wanna save costs)


1. That is not quite the same as constantly working within that upper 25%, as you said it would just be worse for its main use case and still wouldn't change the battery life.

2. This is true, you will see most of the offline and line-interactive use the same battery packs. Their systems for attaching to the line are basically the same between those two. Online ups's have different batteries that are quite a bit more expensive, and work on a different line attachment system.

3. The line interactive will hold the voltage up to a steady 120V the whole time. In reality though, most of our stuff will function perfectly fine down to about 92V. This is what makes me not bother with line interactive and go straight for the offline or online ups's. In a situation where the voltage drops out of range, the line interactive and the offline are equal. Let the AC supply line run down to out of range voltage before even bothering with my offline ups (i set mine ~98v switchover), the line interactive will be draining itself before that point already.

4. I'll say the quality of battery is directly linked to mfg specifications. A good offline will use the same batteries as the line interactive, it will also generate a sinewave that is perfectly usable (over-hyped issue). If your PSU blows or has a problem with either of these issues (sinewave within range, or voltage sensitivity within spec range) then chances are the PSU deserved it and was well below specification ranges. The only thing that could be sensitive to this is some older analog equipment... which is why we required Online UPS systems back in the day in older data, switching, signal, and audio centers. In this case, the line-interactive MAY buy you some extra use, but that's already a use case where if you are looking at anything other than Online you are wasting your time anyways.


5. By nature of their design, most online type try their hardest to emulate a purer sinewave as their main job is to make everything see literally no difference between line power. That isn't to say that buying a cheap no name "Online" UPS might possibly net you a line-interactive masquerading as "Online". Rule of thumb, stick with companies that are dedicated to power backup systems.

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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-01-2019, 03:58 PM
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I use a online UPS with 2 pairs of 6 batterys in series as a poor mans power wall. Had the batterys going for 2 years now and no issue.
I mainly got a online UPS tho so I could tie my solar pannels into the battery pack since its always charging and then inverting the power back to AC.
So the charger turns its self off for a few hours when there is a good ammount of sun and the UPS is wired up to 80% of the house so all the important stuff still works when there is a power cut which is common where I live.


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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-01-2019, 04:09 PM
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Cool and smart little setup you got there bmg!

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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-01-2019, 06:18 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by AllenG View Post
1. That is not quite the same as constantly working within that upper 25%, as you said it would just be worse for its main use case and still wouldn't change the battery life.

5. By nature of their design, most online type try their hardest to emulate a purer sinewave as their main job is to make everything see literally no difference between line power. That isn't to say that buying a cheap no name "Online" UPS might possibly net you a line-interactive masquerading as "Online". Rule of thumb, stick with companies that are dedicated to power backup systems.
thx² for the info

1- so basically a battery has to *work* to last longer?!? (that's counter intuitive that's like a car wearing down faster if kept in the garage) how is that possible??

5- but can a true online UPS still have a false/stepped sinewave output (theoretically)?
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 01-01-2019, 07:04 PM
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A car does wear down faster if its not used vs one thats used daily but maintained.
Sticking with using car as a example. Sitting in the garage the oil doesnt get pumped around, all the bearings sit still and things start to rust up.
Where if you use it daily you dont get that rust building up.

Batterys are the same they need use, That cycling is part of the maintance.


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