by: Josh Parker
A recent lightning strike at a local self storage facility did some damage to both the access and camera systems, and it really got me thinking about how we power these systems, our maintenance and upkeep of them, as well as the thought that goes into designing them when they are installed and upgraded.
How protected are you from lightning or other power surges? Are you using UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supplies) with built in surge protection? Do you have in-line surge protection on your coax and ethernet wiring? Are all of your camera power supplies surge protected? Do your keypads offer any surge or lightning protection? Are your cameras properly grounded?
With that said, here are a few things we recommend you look into. When was the last time you replaced or tested your UPS/surge protectors? Put a sticker with a date of purchase on the unit, and test at daylight savings time. Most manufactures recommend you replace the batteries every 3 years. Here is one that I've been looking at on Amazon as a replacement option for my local office. https://www.amazon.com/APC-Battery-Protector-BackUPS-BX1500M/dp/B06VY6FXMM/ref=sr_1_4?crid=35YBKQ9BA546Z&dchild=1&keywords=battery+backup+surge+protector&qid=1633454936&sprefix=battery+backup%2Caps%2C187&sr=8-4
In addition, I've been doing a bit of research recently regarding access systems and camera systems. Many of the newer keypad models have lightning/surge protection built into the units. I would recommend you look into the units at your facility, and lookup the specs to see if they are protected or not. Are your cameras grounded to the building? Are their power supplies plugged into surge protectors? Are there any surge protectors on the ethernet or coax cables? These are all worthwhile questions to know, and address any areas where protection is lacking.
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Josh Parker is VP of Technology and Development at Storage Authority. A tech guru with a background in large facility operations and team leadership, Josh is passionate about helping individuals and teams achieve success! He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at (942) 275-1340, and can also often be seen visiting local coffee shops across Central Connecticut.