Ignoring power costs in your in-house data center? It’s a common and dangerous practice

Ignoring data center power costs in your in-house computer room? It's a common practice. Most companies with an in-house data center fail to include the cost of power used in the computer room in their yearly budget. Companies also fail to include the cost of power when making comparisons of alternatives when considering outsourced alternatives like cloud computing and colocation.

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Why is the cost of data center power forgotten? Because most companies do not have a way to segment out the power costs in the data center from the power costs in the rest of the building. The power bill comes as a single total, and the person paying the bill often has no understanding of the amount of power that the enterprise data center uses.

This lack of understanding regarding power costs is compounded by the fact for every kilowatt of power used by IT equipment, another kilowatt of power is used by the air conditioning systems required to cool the IT equipment. So even if the IT group is measuring the power used by the IT gear, the measurement is only around half of the actual utilization.

What are the risks when power costs are not considered?

When companies don't monitor electrical usage, power costs can run wild. What you measure you control, and if you're not measuring power, you're not controlling it. Many believe that the three year ongoing monthly power costs now are higher than the costs of the equipment that is being powered.

When companies don't include power costs in a comparison of in-house versus outsourced alternatives, the risk of a bad decision is high. In-house solutions seem significantly cheaper than outsourced solutions, with no regard to the ongoing power costs.

Need help determining your data center power costs? Give Lifeline Data Centers a call. We're data center power experts and we can help you determine your true costs of power.

Alex Carroll

Alex Carroll

Managing Member at Lifeline Data Centers
Alex, co-owner, is responsible for all real estate, construction and mission critical facilities: hardened buildings, power systems, cooling systems, fire suppression, and environmentals. Alex also manages relationships with the telecommunications providers and has an extensive background in IT infrastructure support, database administration and software design and development. Alex architected Lifeline’s proprietary GRCA system and is hands-on every day in the data center.
Alex Carroll