Hot spots in your home can make for an unpleasant living environment. Hot spots in a data center, though, can cause data and productivity loss that can cost your company millions of dollars. That’s why it’s so important to find and fix any hot spots in the data centers you oversee as quickly as you can. To ensure that any issues you have don’t get out of hand, here are a few tips for effective hot spot detection and repair.
Automatic Temperature Monitoring
When it comes to hot spot detection, it’s important that you know the status of the various banks of servers at all times. With automatic temperature monitoring, you can rest assured that you aren’t overlooking any potential problems. Sensors for these systems should be installed near the tops of racks, given that heat naturally rises. Additionally, they should be installed near the equipment intakes, as this is the location where hot spots become a problem. With a system in place to monitor your temperature, it’s also important to put people in place to be able to take action should an alert occur.
Though an automatic temperature monitoring system is the most effective method for detecting hot spots, it’s important to perform manual temperature checks to ensure the automatic system is operating correctly. On a regular basis, you’ll want to do manual temperature measurements at key areas around the center to ensure the sensors for the automatic system are picking up the correct temperature. Of course, if you have a smaller data center and can’t afford an automatic temperature monitoring system, more frequent manual measurements will be necessary.
Effective Air Delivery
In the battle against hot spots, commercial HVAC is your most important ally. Without a quality HVAC system in place, it will be next to impossible to keep your equipment at an acceptable temperature. However, the mere existence of an HVAC system will not prevent your equipment from overheating. The cold air must be delivered to strategic locations within the data center to ensure the intakes on the individual servers are able to access the cold air they need. If you’re merely trying to cool the room as a whole, the air that enters the intakes on the equipment won’t be cold enough to prevent hot spots.
The unique needs of a data center place high demands on an HVAC system. As a result, sometimes overheating is caused by a poorly maintained air conditioner. Given its near-constant use, the air conditioner utilized by your data center must be in peak operating condition at all times. On a regular basis, filters must be cleaned, refrigerant levels must be checked, and all equipment must be properly lubricated. Any loss in efficiency in your facility’s air conditioner could have disastrous cumulative consequences.
In the Know
As you’ve probably noticed, the key to preventing overheating in a data center is a constant awareness of the status of key metrics within your facility. Monitoring the temperature, maintaining the HVAC system, and instituting a hands-on approach will all help as you seek to maintain a moment-by-moment understanding of the status of your company’s servers. By doing so, you’ll help prevent many problems and be able to quickly detect and fix any hot spots that do occur.
About the author:
Brooke Chaplan is a freelance writer and blogger. She lives and works out of her home in Los Lunas, New Mexico. She loves the outdoors and spends most of her time hiking, biking, and gardening. For more information, contact Brooke via Facebook at facebook.com/brooke.chaplan or Twitter @BrookeChaplan