How You Can Maintain a Server Room

Server Room setup

Dig into the digital economy! 10.2% of America’s GDP was based on internet activity in 2020. That’s more than $2 trillion.

Your company needs to have good internet access and document storage in order to make money. That’s why building a server room – even a virtual server room – is so important.

But you can’t get shove a few servers into a closet and call it a day. You need to know about good server room maintenance tips.

What is the best server room like? What conditions should you control inside your room? How can you keep your room clean?

Answer these questions and you can have a safe and successful server room for years to come. Here is your quick guide.

Check the Condition of the Server Room

Before you bring your server hardware in, you need to find a good room for it. The room must be big enough to store everything while providing space for employees to walk around. It should have outlets that you can plug devices into.

Once you’ve found a room, take a look at the floors, ceiling, and walls. Identify any faults in the piping or infrastructure that can lead to a fire or flood.

You must correct these faults as soon as possible. Even a small fire or leak can damage your server hardware irreparably. If you’re having trouble finding these faults, hire network installation services and a building inspector to do a thorough evaluation.

Remove Hazards

Besides fires and leaks, you need to think about trips and falls. A worker can trip over a cable so keep your cables short and move your servers against the walls. The floor should be level, but you can put a carpet or slip-resistant materials on the ground to prevent accidents.

You should also remove any pests. Never allow workers to bring food into your server rooms, and leave trash bins in your rooms so workers can throw papers and other things away.

Conduct an evaluation of your server room every few months or so. Think about how else you can make the room safe.

Install a Cooling System

Companies have different recommendations for how cold your server room should be. But a good Los Angeles managed service provider will recommend that you keep your room below 80 degrees Fahrenheit. At 80 degrees, your servers may overheat, which can damage the CPU.

You should only buy servers that have CPU fans in them. But fans may not provide enough cool air to prevent an overheating problem.

You should install a cooling system that will remove the heat that servers make and circulate cool air. Put an environment monitoring system that will monitor the air temperature and run fans to keep cool air flowing.

Do not set your cooling system up and then forget about it. You should have a professional check the system regularly and fix problems as they arise.

You should also have a backup in case your system fails. You can use desk fans and other devices to cool the servers off, and you can run the servers at lower settings until the cooling system is back up.

Keep the Electricity Flowing

The average American experienced more than eight hours of electric power interruptions in 2020 alone. Going offline for just a few minutes can damage your servers and computers.

Your servers should have an uninterrupted power supply. During a blackout, the servers should run off of batteries or another source of electricity that is off the grid.

For Southern Californian based companies, the threat of blackouts can be even more pronounced due to triple digit heat waves. A Los Angeles IT support company can help equip your company with the most effective servers in a temperature controlled server room to avoid outages and down time as much as possible.

Talk to an electrician about installing a mission-critical electrical infrastructure. As with your cooling system, you should have inspections of your infrastructure every few months or so.

Clear the Air

Humidity can be as big of a problem as high temperatures and blackouts. High humidity can cause corrosion, but low humidity can lead to the production of static electricity, which damages servers.

Your cooling system may have a humidity function that lets you maintain the moisture in the air. Go for a moderate amount. Do not allow employees to bring in water, and provide rags and towels so they can clean up spills and prevent moisture from getting into the air.

You also need to remove dust and airborne pollutants, which can become trapped in your servers. You should take steps to get rid of skin and fabric particles as well as pollen.

Ask your workers to scrub off their clothing before they go into your room. You can leave brushes on a table so employees can remove dust from the server storage equipment.

Clean Your Server Room Every Three Months

You should do a top-to-bottom cleaning of your server room every three months. This includes cleaning your subfloor and the gap between your ceiling and lower ceiling.

A team of employees should use a vacuum to remove dust off the ground and walls. They should dust every surface of the server technology, especially gaps where dust and debris may have built up.

You can use chemicals, as long as they are specifically for server rooms and electronics. Never use a wet mop to clean any surface in a server room.

Create a Great Server Room

Your server room needs your help. Find a big room with adequate air circulation and few hazards. Check your room regularly for any hazards, including pests.

You need to control the environment in your room. Keep the temperature and humidity moderate, and have an air filtration system that removes contaminants.

Have professionals stop by to check your environmental systems. Hire a crew to do a deep clean every three months.

You should also hire someone to help you with your servers. Be Structured provides IT support for Los Angeles-area businesses. Contact us today.

About Chad Lauterbach

CEO at Be Structured Technology Group, Inc. a Los Angeles based provider of Managed IT Services for small business. I desire to help small businesses better utilize technology by assisting in high level planning to make sure that new systems will benefit them both operationally and financially. I am careful to implement and support systems using industry best practices.