Query re connecting up Belkin UPS

  Nosmas 00:22 05 Jul 2003

I have recently bought one of Belkin's latest UPS's - model F6C800UKUNV. At the rear are four UK style 13 amp sockets, three of which give battery back-up (in the event of power failure) plus surge protection, and the fourth only gives surge protection. It only gives power when power is available at the wall socket and is NOT controlled by the front panel switch.

The instructions warn against plugging surge protectors or "power strips" (American for extension sockets?) into the three back-up sockets, but do not mention any similar warning re the surge only protected socket. I have plugged my PC and monitor into two of the back-up sockets and a six-way extension socket into the surge only socket. Into the six-way I have plugged my printer, scanner, sound system and 56K dial-up modem (the ADSL modem is powered from the USB port). I also intend to add a music centre and pre-amplifier (for creating CD's from vinyl records) to the six-way.

When I rang Belkin's technical support to check that this arrangement would be OK, the fellow who dealt with my call seemed unfamiliar with the product and at first said they would not recommend the set-up. When I asked for a reason he back tracked and said it would be OK. Can anyone give me any reasons why my set-up would or would not work - i.e. surge protect those connected devices? Having recently suffered a burnt out ADSL modem due to lightning, I wish to ensure that all my equipment is adequately protected in future.

  Sir Radfordin 01:18 05 Jul 2003

From your explination of how to use the UPS you shouldn't plug a 6-way into the UPS you should only power 4 items from it.

A better solution would be to buy a surge protected plug for the 6-way (or a surge protected 6-way lead) and only power things that you need to shut down in a controlled manner from the UPS.

There is always the danger of overloading things using it as you have done so - though its unlikely.

i would agrre with sir Radorfin about getting a seperate surge protected plug for power strip , it sounds as you would be in danger of overloading the wallsocket otherwise and burning the house down.

sorry that should be radfordin, i get a little dyslexic at this time of day.

  Nosmas 09:02 05 Jul 2003

I thought I had made clear in my initial post that the fourth socket is only surge protected and only supplies power when power is available at the wall socket - in other words a "straight-through" connection. Therefore when there is a power failure the fourth socket is "dead" and all the items plugged into the six-way will not function. However, I would hope that they would be surge protected during a storm irrespective of whether or not mains power has failed.

The two items I want to shut down in an orderly manner - the PC and monitor - are plugged into two of the three sockets that are both surge protected AND give back-up power from the battery.

The UPS itself is plugged into a 13 amp ring main socket, and since the total load of all the items being fed with power via the UPS is taking nowhere near 13 amps I cannot see how the UPS would be overloaded. If I adopted Sir Radfordin's suggestion of buying a separate surge protected six-way, the ring main would have exactly the same load on it as it would under my set-up.

Does anyone else have any views please? Can the surge protection circuitry ever be "overloaded"? I wouldn't have thought so since it is designed to protect against very large surges od current.

  Sir Radfordin 09:38 05 Jul 2003

Can only find an american version of the manual:

click here

One thing it does say is:

Never connect a laser printer or scanner
to the backup outlets of UPS with other computer
equipment. A laser printer or scanner draws
significantly more power when in use than when
idle. This may overload the UPS

Doesn't seem to offer much in the way of advice. However based on the argument you shouldn't plug extension lead into extension lead (6-way into 6-way into wall for example) I would still not do what you have proposed.

  -pops- 10:38 05 Jul 2003

I always thought that a UPS was to supply sufficient power in the event of a mains power failure to give time to close down your computer safely and in accordance with the correct procedure. In that case, only things that are shutdown sensitive (the computer itself and possibly the monitor, to be able to see what you're doing when you're shutting down) should be powered via a UPS. Everything that is not shutdown sensitive (all your peripherals) and ought to be powered from the mains, either direct or through a separate surge protector as you wish.

Regarding multi outlet blocks feeding from surge protectors, they all say that don't they? All the one's I've seen do.


  Nosmas 10:49 05 Jul 2003

Belkin's instructions with the UPS state that items like scanners or printers should not be plugged into the backup sockets because they consume too much power when in use (which I appreciate), and therefore they should be plugged into the surge-only outlet. Because there is only one such outlet, I am extending its functionality by plugging in the six-way.

The Belkin surge protectors I have seen in the shops are all generally 6 or 8 way outlets thus enabling a variety of devices to be plugged into them, so what is the difference between using one of them and my set-up - apart from the extra expense?

  -pops- 11:10 05 Jul 2003

Surge protectors normally say not to connect another multi-socket strip to them and if you do, the guarantee is void. The reason for this, I know not but, it is good enough for me to buy a surge protector and use it properly to get the confidence of the excellent Belkin insurance and guarantee on this equipment.

I live in the back of beyond where power cuts and surges are all too frequent. Last week there was a one hour cut on Monday evening, a 45 minute cut followed quickly by another 10 minute cut on Tuesday. That is not at all unusual. I have not had to use the Belkin guarantee myself but I certainly know people who have.

  Nosmas 15:37 05 Jul 2003

Any thoughts from anyone on the "evening shift" please?

  BillEmm 16:33 05 Jul 2003

Being the user of two UPS 'boxes' and having had the odd problem or two over the years I have to support what has already been said.

Each outlet, irrespective of its function and source is designed for a single device. If you put multiple devices on the single surge only outlet you reduce its surge protection capability. If you wanted to support several devices then there are UPS models available which provide the extra outlets. I have one such device which has 4 of each outlet type (surge/battery and surge only) and I only have a single device connected to each.

The surge only outlet is NOT just a straight through connection from your mains. It can be if you want to negate its surge protection capability - but I've already said that. It is an unfortunate move by Belkin that they have introduced 13 Amp style sockets on their new unit as this gives the impression that it IS a 13 Amp outlet and can be used as such.

All previous UPS units had kettle style outlet sockets which prevented most people from doing what you intend.

Just a few added thoughts:

This is a 800VA unit and this translates to 450 watts. That is its design maximum but should only support its load maximum which is 80 percent of design maximum. Therefore don't put more than 360 watts worth of load on your unit.

Modern PCs with lots of bits inside really need something like a 1500VA unit.

That's why I have two UPS boxes - I learned the hard way!

Just a few thoughts for the pot.


Also be aware that a 800

  Wellpastit 20:11 05 Jul 2003

Use your Belkin to protect your Computer and Monitor. It may take more units but when you get a power cut, the drain will reduce your on time.
Use a seperate surge protector for printer, scanner etc.
Dont forget a phone line surge protector.
My Belkin has saved the day many times, but I cannot get XP to control it, I have to use the CD that came with the unit, and the Belkin driver is not MS verified.

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