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7 Questions before getting an inverter back up system

By Afam Nnaji on December, 2 2009

Views: 4,527

Quite a number of Nigerians have used inverter backup systems with varying degree of satisfaction with some of the projects failing completely. How then can one ensure that the next inverter backup project will not be a failure especially when the average potential client may not have all the information necessary to make the right choices?

The following questions should help guide prospective clients.

1. Does the dealer, seller or distributor have relevant knowledge about inverter technology?

This might seem obvious but you may be surprised at the quality of information or answers you get when you seek clarifications or ask questions. Incorrect or wrong information could lead to a failed inverter project - guaranteed.

2. What is the warranty provided?

Usually promises are easier to make than to keep and in this area it is not easy for inverters to be repaired by people that do not have the relevant skills and tools to repair them. Spares or extra units that usually ship with consignments (imported inverters) easily run out or may be used or sold by the dealers so in reality you may have to wait for weeks in some cases to resolve simple issues.

3. How long has the provider been in business?

You don't expect a provider that started dealing in inverters just 2 weeks or months ago to make and keep promises in a power solution that ought to work for years in a safe and cost effective manner. Remember that power inverters work all the time regardless of the source of power so it is not just another piece of furniture out there. Experience in this area cannot be taken for granted as there is a thin line between a safe inverter system and a fire hazard sitting in your office or home.

4. What constitutes support and how long does it take to get a support staff to site?

Try to understand what after sales support really mean. Try to get information on how long it will take to get an issue resolved from the time a problem is reported. 1 hr, 24 hrs or 7 days are all possible response times so be certain you have a good idea when you expect to get help should you need one.

5. Is the provider in this inverter solution in the long haul?

Inverter backup systems are usually setup to work for years and you would want to be sure of support anything you need one. You would want to know if the provider would be around in the next couple of years or if you would be left with no support whatsoever after a couple of months or years when you may really need the support.

6. Can you get real people to talk to as regards the reliability of the inverter backup system?

Trust a service provider completely at your own risk as it is common to hear service providers claim they offer the best services or products at fantastic prices whether these claims are true or false. Getting to talk to people using solutions from a service provider could help confirm or verify claims that could help in taking a decision. Do you get straight forward responses when you ask for these or do you get vague responses that are neither here nor there?

7. What is the charging current of the inbuilt or dedicated battery charger?

This information determines the number of hours it takes to recharge your battery bank bearing in mind that the inverter backup system is only as good as the state of charge of your battery or batteries. Many battery chargers in he market today are incapable of charging the batteries properly as the charging amps are usually too high or too low and the battery can be damaged by over charging or under charging. Batteries are meant to be charged properly regardless of the battery chemistry and capacity.

Some inverter manufacturers now remove this information from product catalogs as more and more people are beginning to understand the relationship between the charging current and the over all reliability of a typical inverter backup system.

Generally there are two major types or classifications of inverters in the market today - true sine wave and modified or simulated sine wave inverters. True sine wave inverters can power all electrical or electronic appliances that run on AC and they are usually more expensive and complex circuits. Modified sine wave inverters on the other hand are not well suited for sensitive medical equipment, laser printers, laser scanners or laser photocopiers and they are usually cheaper to setup and simpler circuits and the majority of inverters out there are modified sine wave inverters.

Inverter backup systems work and when you take a good look at the total cost of ownership they are usually cheaper than running generators with payback time in as little as 1 year in some cases. There are individuals and businesses that have been depending on inverters for many years regardless of the failed projects you hear out there usually due to issues ranging from lack of relevant knowledge on the part of the provider to misinformation and unrealistic promises just to make the sales.

You can get it right the first time. You don't need to try different providers before getting to use a reliable inverter system for your home or office. Just Alternative Power provides reliable inverter backup solutions while maintaining a very high level of professional integrity and timely support with 1 year full warranty where repairs or outright replacements are done at no cost.


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