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Saturday, April 17th, 2021 3:17 PM

Base Station Battery Upgrade?

I recently pulled the batteries from my SS3 base station and see that they are 1000 mili amp hour, nickel metal hydride rechargables. Is there a problem with replacing them with a higher capacity cell for longer run time when the power goes out? Thanks!

2.2K Messages

3 years ago

Maybe.  It appears that the system shuts down even when there is enough juice left in those 1000mah batteries (that is, remove one, replace it, and without any more charging, gives the same length of service).

Best bet is to try it.  And keep in mind that "no name" batteries which claim a high mah rating could be "exaggerating".

244 Messages

3 years ago

Also think Maybe.  The question is whether or not the base station can charge and maintain larger-capacity batteries.  It depends a bit on how robust and how smart or dumb the charging and measuring circuitry is.  You can probably go 50% bigger capacity without any problems, but no guarantees.

A simpler solution for really long-running backup would be a small desktop Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS).  They run $40-50 for a 450 VA (250 Watt) unit.  The power consumption of the base (SS2) is so low my Kill A Watt meter won't even register it.  Safe bet that a little UPS will run it for a full day, if not several days.

I have my base in my home office, so it's plugged into my existing big 1400 VA UPS my computers are plugged into.  Computers are usually going to be turned off in any power-out situation, so I'll get many, many days of power for my base station.  :)

For any UPS, remember to put a significant load on it and simulate a power outage (pull the plug) for at least 5 minutes every 6-12 months.  Almost all still use gel-cell lead-acid batteries that only last 3-5 years.  They go "soft" (weak) without any obvious signs until a load is put on them.

Community Admin


5.5K Messages

3 years ago

Hey there,

Yes, it's safe to replace those batteries with a higher capacity, so long as you use NiMH. It's just that the improvements are somewhat marginal, so it might not be worth it.

A UPS would certainly be a great option as well - so you'll have both the Base Station's batteries and the UPS to fall back on.

- Johnny M.
SimpliSafe Home Security

2.2K Messages

3 years ago

The problem with a UPS is that originally they were designed to provide a lot of power for a short period of time.  As such, no attention was paid to the efficiency of the DC to AC conversion process, and they were found to provide not much more time even for a very low draw of power.

Some modern UPS seem to have overcome this inefficiency.  My UPSs have an "estimated time" available on the display, which claim they will power SS and my exterior DVR based cameras for a decent period of time.  Not that I've ever tried it for that long, so I suppose it could be "over-estimating".
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