I want to buy a battery backup for my cable modem and wireless router. Anyone have any recommendations for a good brand and how much money I need to spend per hour of battery life?
I’ve had good luck with APC. Don’t know about cost per hour, but those two devices won’t draw tons of power so you shouldn’t need a super expensive one.
How long is your power usually out? If it is a really long time often, then get a bigger one. Do you already have one for your computer tower and monitor?
The super-cheap models have many drawbacks, like the inability to replace the battery, no display showing the voltage or the backup time left. Go one step up to get those necessary features. Whatever time you need to allow a safe shutdown should be doubled, as the batteries will decline in capacity over time. In about 4 years, they will have only half of their original capacity, and should be replaced soon.
It’s unlikely to be cost-effective to power your entire computer desk for several hours. If you really need that kind of backup, a gas generator is a better bet. We spent about $15,000 for a washing machine-sized UPS for our TV station, and it provides about 4 hours at typical 2% load (=4 PC computers). After 9 years, all batteries are shot and will have to be replaced at a cost of $6000 plus shipping, and they are heavy.
I have a couple of CyberPower units like this and they’ve been reliable so far.
Thanks for the info.
As I discussed in another thread, this is for earthquake prep. If the cell towers are down or jammed, and the power’s out, I want the modem and router powered so I can use the internet to contact friends and relatives. I don’t care about powering anything else. I guess the “worst case” scenario in terms of backup would be powering the modem and router for say 8 hours until I could get home through damaged/clogged streets. I could use my phone to connect to the router and I have separate battery backup for the phone.
I’ve had great luck buying refurbished UPS units from upsforless.com - especially the APC units. The SmartUPS units have been refurbished and new batteries installed, and you can save quite a bit of $$$ over buying new units.
I have a CyberPower, as they seem to have all the features of the APCs, but are often considerably cheaper for the same size battery. The one I have is 600VA. Plugged into is are a server (just an old desktop without a monitor), the cable modem, and the wifi router. It runs the server for about 5 minutes, then the server will shutdown because the battery only has 5 minutes left. Once the server is off, it will run the cable modem and router for another 45-60 minutes. I suspect if I didn’t have the server plugged in I could get 1.5 hours with the cable modem and wifi router.
How long of a power outage do you want to survive? I think a 1200VA will get you a few hours. More than that, and you might look into some of the Lithium ion battery based large powerbank things, which are designed to be solid state replacements for generators. And then of course you could get a mini-generator that will power your internet and keep all your devices charged for days with whatever gas you can siphon out of your car.
I know a UPS is super convenient, because there won’t be any interruption, like with a generator, but I don’t think it’s terribly useful beyond a few hours.
ETA: I see you say you want 8 hours. You could always use two UPSs, one for the cable modem, and the other for the wifi-router.
Slickdeals routinely posts deals where these are marked down considerably. Cyberpower and APC are about the same, each is decent quality but not professional grade.
Here’s a deal on an APC one, the deal expires Monday :
20 bucks and the store selling is newegg (they are a highly credible brand on the same tier as Amazon). If you are really wanting to get all the runtime you can, buy 2, and use a separate one for the router from the one for the modem.
Most likely you will get 1-4 hours of runtime, the exact amount depends on the brand and type of those devices. Most power outages are for under a minute, and if you want to be ready for extremely prolonged outages you will need a generator.
I just noted that the OP is like me: UPS for cable modem/router. (Plus a couple other low power devices like my VoIP box.)
You don’t need much to last several hours. I have a low-mid range CyberPower UPS and it goes on quite a bit.
Unfortunately: it beeps when the power goes out! I know the power is out. Stop beeping! There’s a software setting that turns it off. But … this requires plugging it in to a PC via USB. Something I’m not going to do while the power is out. Plus, once set it will unset after a power glitch! So, turning it off is basically useless.
Next time I’m going to open it up and pull the beeper.
Good grief, what idiots designed something this badly???
Thanks for all the replies–especially the sale,** SamuelA**!
My current situation isn’t conducive to a generator, so perhaps I’ll do the two backup solution. Much appreciated.
All UPSes I have seen have a button to silence the sound.
I just took out the beeper, batteries and wired in some 450 amp 12V auto type batteries to run the back-up through the power smoother then on to the TV, computer tower and two monitors.
No idea how long it will go with just the tower & one monitor running but with all that is connected and up and running, I can get 30-40 minutes and if I shut off the big TV I have no idea how long it will go. I never had to wait that long for power to come back. If it is going to be days, I will of course shut things down and use a laptop as needed. This system can boot and run my laptop for longer than I can stand & if I boot the laptop from it’s own battery and then run off the backup, who knows.
Forgot, I have a AT&T Micro tower also & I can ‘hot spot’ with my smart phone as another way to get information with the laptop or just use the smart phone alone.
If the infrastructure is all down, then nothing but radio is available anyway as there is nothing to connect to. If the radio towers are also all down, I do not have a ham rig so I will just work on staying alive during the Apocalypse.
I have a few different units in the 1000 to 1250 VA range, including ones from APC and Belkin. Each one cost less than $100. The Belkin unit, for example, uses two 5 AH 12 V batteries in series. Run time is about 45 minutes and replacement cost of the batteries is about $19. I change them every three years.
However, for several units I have switched to 9 AH batteries (at a cost of about $40), which just about doubles the run time. I place the larger batteries behind the unit and run a 14 AWG cable from the unit’s battery leads back to the battery terminals. You can get the male and female spade connectors from Amazon or local auto parts stores. This leaves the original cables in place in case I want to switch back to the smaller batteries in the future.
Most UPS units for home use have very limited recharging capabilities (e.g., 750 mA or so), but they work well enough even when you double or triple the battery capacity. DON’T buy a second set of batteries and place them in parallel with the original batteries. Just go ahead and switch to larger batteries when you need to replace the originals.
Sorry. I forgot to add something to my post.
I do not use a UPS for my router and cable modem. Both units use a 12 VDC power source, so I use a regulated 12 VDC charger and a single 9 AH 12 V battery. The charger keeps the battery charged and then I have two generic adapters (cigarette lighter to coaxial power connector) intended for use in a car. I get great run times because I’m not converting the DC battery voltage to AC and then back again to DC for the equipment like a UPS does. A straight DC source is much more efficient. They will easily run for 12 to 18 hours.
So? You haven’t seen this one. It really is switchless for turning off the alarm. Software only. That’s why I highlighted it.
Taking out the switch saves them a few pennies. I am soooo happy for them.
I don’t know what brand it was, but 15-20 years ago my dad had one with the same design flaw. My brother referred to it as “the screaming box” back then.
I added a jack to the side of my UPS and made up a battery cable with alligator clips on the end. I can clip onto any 12 volt battery. In fact I made the cable long enough so I can park a car next to the porch and hook it up. Ever since I did that I have not needed it.
It’s probably bad SDMB etiquette to reply to my own post, but I just discussed this with a friend, so here’s a bit more.
I do not mean to imply that adding additional batteries to a UPS in parallel with the existing batteries is somehow very dangerous. The batteries aren’t going to catch on fire or explode (usually). But it’s a little more efficient to keep all your cells in series than to start putting some of them in parallel with others, especially if the batteries you add differ from the original batteries or are much newer/older.