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Thread: Laser Printer battery backup

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    Default Laser Printer battery backup

    So I asked Tripp Lite about this and they say don't use a UPS, use a 12v battery and an inverter/charger. Seriously what is the difference between the inverter/charger built in to a regular UPS and a standalone? I'm sure there is a quality difference but why not just point me to a larger UPS that is designed with higher loads in mind?

    OK, here is the scenario

    HP laserjet 1000 series

    1 Power Consumption Operational 250 Watt
    2 Power Consumption Stand by / Sleep 2 Watt
    Rated current 3.5 amps
    The heat dissipation in Ready mode is 20 BTU/hour.

    1 Power reported is the highest value measured (by HP) for monochrome printing using all standard voltages. I haven't tested the printer we have as I figured it wouldn't vary enough to matter.

    2 The default time from Ready mode to PowerSave mode and the recovery time from PowerSave mode to the start of printing is negligible (less than 10 seconds) because of the instant-on fusing (again stolen from the HP specs).

    What is the cheapest device or combination of parts that I can buy to allow use of this printer during a 30 minute blackout. Assume the black out will last more than 30 minutes but the printer will only see minimal use (maybe print 25 to 50 pages during the 30 minutes of use and won't have to heat up from idle more than twice during the period).

    I don't think a generator will be an option in this location/budget scenario. It may very well be that a UPS style solution will be out of the budget range as well but I'd like to know what it would be even if it is just for curiosity's sake.

    Of course there is a server, a PC, a few monitors, a couple of switches, and such involved but lets assume they are already on UPS equipment sufficient to handle the scenario. The only question is how much cost does it add to allow this one desktop printer to be usable when no other printer has power.

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    Most, if not all, laser printers have a HUGE transient current draw when powering up (heating) the fuser. Few UPS can handle the transient. IIRC, APC had some models that could.

    Edit: Then again... APC does not currently advise using laser printers with their UPS systems.
    Last edited by sdbardwick; 02-07-2008 at 09:14 PM.

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    Yeah laser printers are real bad on UPS....becasue of the startup draw that you can't measure. Since the aren't critical leave them off the UPS.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spectre View Post
    Yeah laser printers are real bad on UPS....because of the startup draw that you can't measure. Since the aren't critical leave them off the UPS.
    Critical is a relative term.

    I'll quote myself from a thread on another site:

    Being able to print a check or some other document that has to be overnighted by way of FedEx, UPS, DHL means you have to be able to do it before the "drop off/pick up" time. Delivery companies don't care how long the power has been out they have a set timetable.
    The whole point of this is to allow use of a printer while the power is off.

    The concept is there is a business function that has to happen every day no matter what that involves printing. What is the cheapest way to get that one printer to work long enough to do this small amount of required printing done even if the power is down for half a day?

    Remember there is no way we can run a generator inside this office and putting the generator elsewhere involves an electrician plus thousands of dollars in equipment costs. I'm assuming they would have to put it on the roof as there are no equipment pads around this building.
    The best suggestion I got so far was to use an inkjet instead. We could haul one out of a closet on an as needed basis if it comes to that but it is far from ideal as you have to keep ink cartridges on hand as well. If you don't have to do it but once or twice a year your cartridges might dry up before you get a second use out of them.

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    Then haul an inkjet out but the laser printer is a bad idea. And no checks aren't the only way to transfer funds you can EBT, wire, cashiers check, money order, etc.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spectre View Post
    Then haul an inkjet out but the laser printer is a bad idea. And no checks aren't the only way to transfer funds you can EBT, wire, cashiers check, money order, etc.
    You must like to argue. I never said that checks were the only way to transfer funds. You conveniently ignored the use of the words "some other document"

    OK, so your business is required to send a check with a legal document, the document needs to be overnighted. You are going to go out at the last second and try to setup an alternate form of payment and expect the government agency that is receiving the legal document to not reject it for not having a check in the package with it?

    Just because other forms of payment are available in general doesn't mean they are appropriate for this situation nor does it mean we can switch to one of them on a moments notice when the power goes out.

    And what the document is or how we transfer funds has nothing to do with powering a printer from a UPS or Generator. I came here to discuss electrical issues not business concerns or government regulations.

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    I've had a HP LasterJet 4 on a Riello Power Dialog 6kW UPS

    It did handle it just fine, normally the load just went up when I started the printer and there where no strange side effects

    But in the manual for the printer it is mentioned that it draws 27aH for 20msec (I'm going by memory now so might be off)
    I actually did see this once (and once only) in the logs; when the printer was started the _incoming_ line voltage was reported as 170VAC instead of 230VAC
    So the printer depleted the really large capacitor in the UPS and then took the line voltage down that far... Of course only for a millisecond or so so it does not really matter

    But I'm not sure it's very good for the UPS, and for that matter if it even would have handeled it during a balckout, I never did try... (it's batteries are now dead and I have not replaced them yet)

    Call APC and ask them instead
    "The one who says it cannot be done should never interrupt the one who is doing it."

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