March 15, 2019


The average estimated cost of downtime for a data center is $9,000 per minute, meaning that keeping your reserve power system up and running is essential for maintaining a positive ROI. The batteries that are part and parcel of that reserve power system pose a risk to your organization and to your stakeholders. And the reality is that relying solely on the battery manufacturer’s recommended repair and replacement schedule MAY keep that risk at bay, but in our experience, you are setting yourself up for either of these two outcomes:

  • If you rely on replacing your batteries according to the manufacturer’s recommendations and replace your battery system too early, you unnaturally shorten the lifespan of viable equipment. And cost the company $$.

  • And if you rely on a manufacturer’s maintenance schedules too heavily, you may wait too long and trigger an outage. And cost the company $$$.

That $9,000 per minute number, can strike fear into the heart of the people who are responsible for ensuring uptime- from the facility manager to the CEO. Data Centers are not a cost center. As the recent news about data center construction in Santa Clara, CA and Dulles, VA and elsewhere can attest – data centers are an investment. And when you look at the best practices for maintaining your investment and ensuring that your ROI isn’t negatively impacted by an outage, you’ll find a long list of best practices including: preventing intrusions and attacks, testing your Disaster Recovery, and powering your racks correctly, etc., and all of that is great advice, but monitoring is also on the list, as in monitoring power usage, rack conditions, energy efficiency, as well as monitoring batteries.

At BTECH, we have deployed our battery monitoring solutions across a wide range of data center facilities: In-house, cololocation, wholesale, managed hosting, shared hosting, etc.; each an investment in it’s own right, and in each instance- we have virtually eliminated the UPS and the batteries as a vector for downtime. What’s more- because we have eliminated the part that the UPS and batteries play in downtime, we have mitigated the risk exposure of their investment(s).

Unpredictability and uncertainty are the enemies of investment, and together, they affect the future outlook of an investment. A battery’s reliability is inherently unpredictable and batteries are responsible for up to 30% of unplanned outages in the data center – not a lot of certainty to be found there, unless battery monitoring is added into the mix. Supported by a well-defined process for preventive maintenance, battery replacement, and restrings, monitoring batteries can significantly reduce the risk of dropped loads due to battery failure, optimize the battery system, maximize battery life, and improve safety. The use of a battery monitoring system provides certainty, enabling facility manager, the CEO and stakeholders alike to have confidence that the reserve power system will react and support a load during a power outage.