Monitoring humidity levels in data centers can be challenging, but is completely necessary. Without that perfect mix of conditions, the equipment could suffer. The Data Centre Journal says that facilities without enough humidity face the problem of static shock causing damage to sensitive equipment. On the other hand, too much humidity results in condensation and the eventual corrosion or short circuiting of electronics — which is exactly what happened to Facebook’s first data center.
Facebook Data Center Disaster
While engineers worked on the cloud to back up information stored on the famous social networking site, a literal cloud formed in the data center and rained on the servers. That’s right — condensation was taken to a whole new level in 2011 at the Facebook headquarters. Facebook reported that a problem in the facility led high temperature, low humidity air from the hot aisles of the center to recirculate through the cold aisles through an evaporative aircooling system that left the recirculated air with too much moisture. The result was a temperature above 80 degrees and a humidity level of about 95% in the cold aisles of the data center, which caused condensation. The Register quoted Facebook’s VP of Engineering Jay Parikh as saying:
“I got a call, ‘Jay, there’s a cloud in the data center.’ ‘What do you mean, outside?’ ‘No, inside’.”
Parikh said the short circuiting of servers was audible. You could literally hear the expensive equipment fizzle out.
As you can see, not even industry leaders like Facebook are exempt from the damages of humidity in a data center. This is why it is vital to maintain safe humidity levels by renting portable dehumidifiers. Just one week of wet weather could cause humidity and condensation indoors. In some cases, flooding even becomes a worry. You may be unprepared for the damages a sudden storm can cause. Renting a dehumidifier will solve that problem and save your electronics, as well as the data they hold. The cost of a rental compared with the cost of replacing equipment is minimal. Don’t let a one-time weather event destroy months of work or profit.
The Importance of AC or Fan Rentals
Although your experience may not be as dramatic as Facebook’s, renting an additional air conditioner or fan could save you a lot of money. These spot coolers are affordable, come in a variety of sizes, and take less than 3 minutes to install. They will keep temperatures in the correct range so you won’t ever have to worry about replacing your servers because of moisture damage. The following are some typical repercussions caused by high temperature and humidity in data centers:
- Electric sparks
- Short circuiting
- Electrostatic charge
- Loss of data
- Equipment replacement bills
If you’re concerned about keeping air moving, we also rent industrial sized fans. Learn more about data center cooling options.