Event Logging: An Essential Tool for Troubleshooting Power Problems

Power events such as transients can last only microseconds while other power disturbances (e.g., blackouts, brownouts, sags, etc.) may persist for only milliseconds. Both are much shorter than the average time to blink your eye. Intermittent power disturbances caused by harmonic distortions often occur randomly making them hard to troubleshoot even moments after the power disturbance occurs.

The sources of power disturbances are caused by both external sources (e.g., weather or problems upstream of a service entrance), as well as internal ones (e.g., adjustable frequency drives, air conditioners, compressors, printers, electronic power supplies, etc.). Power companies generally recommend keeping an Electrical Disturbance Log to gather information about the time and length of the disturbance, what equipment was affected and the weather conditions when the event occurred. But these manual logs, while important, are an after-the-fact record that may not be of much help in the detailed troubleshooting of a power problem. This is where the event logging feature of network power management software can help you solve a troublesome power problem.

While network power management software has many features that help you control, monitor and operate networks, I’d like to focus on event logging for now. The advantage of power event logging is that it’s constantly monitoring and ready to record power events in real-time. This type of detailed information can be very useful in reducing power problem troubleshooting time.

A related feature of event logging is the alarm notification of power events. You can easily configure most software for several types of events, including “On Battery,” “Battery Low,” “Battery Capacity Below Warning Level,” “Communications Lost,” “Temperature High,” “Self-Test Failed,” “Output Off” and “Battery Over 3 Years Old.” Because these events are stored internally, you can convert the event log into a text file that can be automatically emailed to you.

Combining event logging and alarm notification of power events, network power management software takes the guesswork out of when power disturbances occur, enabling you to proactively manage power problems before they seriously affect productivity.

Tripp Lite offers PowerAlert Network Power Management Software for free! Download it today.

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