Monday, September 20, 2010

UPS for home

Almost inexorably, the day arrived (start of the season of power cuts !!) when I had to contemplate buying a UPS/Inverter for home. 

1. APC - Numero uno. Almost legendary reputation for reliability. Expensive.
2. Microtek - Best price + warranty offer.
3. LUMINOUS - Good price. Very informative website. Excellent sales and support (if someone is planning to buy a UPS inverter, I would happily recommend these folks). My choice.

1. 800VA - To power the lights, fans and all electronic equipment in our small but snug and comfortable two bedroom apartment, this was sufficient.
2. Pure sine wave - As opposed to Modified(square) sine wave generated by the UPS usually offered by vendors.
See for the differences.
One additional difference is the power factor. The actual power delivered by modified sinewave for this unit was 800VA*0.8=640W whereas for the pure sinewave  the value was 800VA*0.7=560W (1 tubelight).
To power our laptops, printer, I specifically asked for pure sine wave inverter despite the slight reduction in power supplied.
3. 12V, 120 AH battery - Prestolite (an Exide brand) supplied by LUMINOUS.
4. Inline - Did NOT go with a unit that could be connected inline i.e. power is drawn at all time from the UPS battery so that even when there is a power outage UPS inverter automatically kicks in without the tiny interruption.
5. Price - `13k

LUMINOUS Sine (Pure Sine) Wave 800VA for powers my home!!
(Hmm.. Maybe I should ask for a fee for this endorsement :))

It is sad that Bangalore continues to suffer from daily power outages when its infrastructure ought to match up to  the likes of Shanghai.

A quick back of the envelope calculation: Price of the UPS times No. of households who own a TV (and can be assumed to be able to afford a UPS) = `15000 times 17000000 = ` 25.5 billion or 2550 crores, that is over 40% of the total 2009-10 power budget of the state of Karnataka. So, every household is paying the penalty of buying a UPS, because the funds allocated to build, maintain and enhance infrastructure has over the years been inefficiently utilized  over the years!!