Find Out the Ideal Server Room Temperature
One of the most difficult, and costly, parts of operating a server room is controlling the temperature of the environment. The equipment housed in the server room both produces a huge amount of heat and is quite sensitive to temperature. If the air coolers in a large server room went offline for even a short period of time, the equipment would quickly overheat, and in many cases, cause permanent damage to the hardware.
The simple answer to finding the ideal server room temperature is that it should be between 68- and 71-degrees Fahrenheit. When it comes to managing a server room, however, the simple answer isn’t going to suffice. This article will provide you with the detailed information you need to not only know the ideal temperature for a server room, but how to manage the environment to ensure the equipment runs safely.
Safe Temperature Ranges
Maintaining an ideal server room temperature helps ensure all the equipment is able to operate at peak efficiency. The fact is, however, that computer equipment won’t be damaged or have any major issues even if the environment is quite a bit warmer or cooler. For most types of equipment, the environment can go as low as 50-degrees, and as high as 82.
Of course, you don’t want to plan for either of these extremes as they don’t leave any room for error. If one part of the server room becomes warmer than the rest, for example, it would quickly cause problems with your hardware.
Consistent Temperature Throughout the Server Room
Most server rooms are fairly large areas that house dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of different pieces of equipment. This large space can make it difficult to maintain an ideal temperature in all areas. Having ‘hot spots’ in a server room is both inefficient and puts the equipment in that area at risk. In order to combat this problem, server room managers need to take a number of proactive steps:
- Thermometers Throughout the Room – Having digital thermometers throughout the room will allow you to identify where potential problems exist.
- Smart Airflow Planning – One of the most important ways to ensure a consistent temperature in a server room is with smart airflow planning.
- Strategically Placed Cooling Ducts – Part of airflow planning is the placement of cooling ducts. These ducts need to be located throughout the room to ensure an even temperature.
- Proper Air Cooling – When cooling a server room, you need to have efficient and reliable air conditioning units. Depending on the outside environment, this can include chilled water systems, outside air cooling, and traditional air conditioning systems.
Temperature Within Server Racks
Keeping the average temperature of a server room at the right levels is important, but it is just the beginning. Equally critical is managing the temperature in and around the server racks themselves. These racks often house multiple pieces of computer equipment, each of which produces a lot of heat. Server racks should have air flowing through them from the outside of the rack, from the bottom of the rack, or in through the top of the rack. Including fan trays to help circulate air is also crucial. This will help to quickly remove the heat and dissipate it to the surrounding area where it can be properly eliminated.
Server rooms need to be in operation around the clock to support the systems that they house. This means the cooling system needs to be running properly at all times. If there is a power outage, the air-cooling system needs to be on the backup generators so there is no outage. In the event that the main air-cooling system experiences some type of failure, there should be a backup system in place.
Many server rooms are cooled by two separate systems that are each operating at all times. In the event that one of them fails, the other can simply work harder to compensate until the first one is fixed. Another option is to have two distinct types of cooling systems in place. The best way to ensure you have redundant cooling for your server room is to analyze the outside environment, and the server room needs, and then pick the solutions that will provide you with the right results.