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Gruber Power | How to Initiate the Battery Self Test in SmartUPS

 SmartUPS Front Panel Example

The replace battery indicator (Red LED) is designed as a early warning signal to the Smart-UPS user. If the LED is illuminated, that does not necessarily mean that the UPS is incapable of supporting the load. In a true replace battery scenario, the indicator will light 1 to 2 months prior to complete battery degradation. It is important to identify whether or not battery replacement is immediately required.

Note: There are instances when the indicator may be false. Follow this document to determine if it is a true indicator.

In order for the LED to be lit or to be cleared, it is necessary to run a valid self test. For a self test to be considered valid, it must have the following characteristics: The battery capacity must be greater than 75% or the Smart-UPS must have been charging for at least 8 hours from the last low battery condition. (Low battery condition refers to a state when the Smart-UPS battery has almost fully discharged). A self test can be initiated in any one of five ways:

  • PowerChute plus software

  • SmartSlot accessory

  • Smart-UPS front panel test button

  • Automatic timer- every two weeks from turn on

  • Start up of the UPS

If the above conditions are not satisfied, a power failure is simulated, a runtime calibration is initiated, or the UPS's plug is pulled from the outlet, the replace battery LED state will not change.

That is, if the LED is lit, then it will stay lit. If the LED is dark, then it will remain dark. If the replace battery LED is lit, then perform the following steps: The following steps can be performed on any currently produced Smart-UPS whether it is in or out of warranty.

  1. Check the battery voltage using PowerChute plus. If the unit (non-XL) has been charging for 3 hours, the battery voltage should be around 27.6V or 55.6V depending on the Smart-UPS model. If not, it is likely that the battery charger is broken and the unit will need to be replaced (an RMA will be issued if in warranty). This can also be verified if the battery capacity bar graph does not go all the way to 100% after 3 hours. Note: Confirm that all battery LEDs are working by clicking on "Test UPS Alarm" through PowerChute plus or SmartSlot Accessory.

  2. If possible, charge the unit for 24 hrs. The Smart-UPS will charge whether it is on or off. The unit will charge whether there is a load present or not. Note: In situations where the power quality is poor, it is recommended that the unit be shutdown during this charging period. So long as the Smart-UPS is on and able to supply power to a load, it is possible that it may switch to battery operation which will in effect lengthen the time to full recharge.

  3. Run a self-test. The replace battery LED should clear. If it fails the self test:

  4. Turn the unit off and restart it. When you turn a Smart-UPS on, it will initiate a self-test.

If the unit fails the self-test, then assume the battery is bad.

Note: The battery may be bad as a result of the age, high temperature, improper ventilation, over-usage of the battery due to poor power quality, non-APC battery in use, or a fault charging system. Once these issue have been addressed, it will be necessary to determine whether a RBC should be purchased or the entire Smart-UPS should be replaced.