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Electrical contractors and design consultants can play an important role helping their customers decide on the best power protection systems given their specific power and budget needs in terms of total cost of ownership (TCO). In the commercial and industrial space, the choice of an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) model can mean the customer gets not only the proper level of protection, but thousands in savings on energy costs over the life of the UPS.
Customers may pay more in up-front capital costs for a more energy efficient UPS model, but they can recoup that investment in just 2 years or so from energy savings. After that, the customer pockets the savings every year in reduced energy costs. I’d say that’s a decision worth discussing, either with the end customer, specifier or both.
Total Cost of Ownership- Two Power Protection Systems Considerations
1. A power protection ROI comparison
For the sake of comparison, let’s consider a “traditional” UPS supporting a 40kW load. It costs around €7,000, or $7,800, and operates at 96% energy efficiency, which is quite good. Still, at that rate over the course of 10 years, with an energy cost rate of 0.13€ per kwh, the total cost of ownership for this UPS will be around €30,300 ($33,841).
Now consider a similarly sized UPS that features ECOnversion technology, a twist on traditional UPS energy savings modes that delivers up to 99% efficiency without any of the loss in reliability that’s typical of other types of UPS energy saving technology. This model costs around 30% more up-front vs. the traditional UPS. But that 3% difference in energy efficiency delivers a significant cost savings every year, enough to put the UPS’s10-year TCO at €15,200 ($16,973) – or nearly 50% less than the traditional UPS. In most cases, the ECOnversion UPS will deliver a 2-year payback to customers.
Both options will deliver quality power protection for commercial and industrial loads of virtually any size. For those customers who are only interested in their up-front cost, the traditional UPS will be a great choice. But for those who take a longer view, and can appreciate the savings that energy efficiency brings, it’ll be worth discussing UPSs that feature ECOnversion technology.
2. Lithium-ion batteries take savings further
Another consideration in an industrial UPS is the use of Lithium-ion batteries. Li-ion batteries have a longer life expectancy and require less maintenance as compared to traditional valve-regulated lead acid (VRLA) batteries. Li-ion batteries last up to 10 years, vs. 3-5 years for VRLA. That boosts the life expectancy of a Li-ion-based UPS to around 15 years.
What’s more, Li-ion batteries weigh far less and take up significantly less space as compared to VLRA batteries, opening up new options for where the UPS can be installed.
Learn more – guidance on power protection systems
Making a sound UPS choice involves a lot more than just the initial purchase price. As trusted providers, electrical contractors and design consultants are in a good position to help customers consider the long-term ramifications of going with a more energy efficient UPS model, as well as the benefits of Li-ion batteries.
To learn more about various models, access our online Secure Power Industrial Selector tool, which will guide you to a UPS that’s just right for a specific application.