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It’s Important to Keep Servers Cool

It’s Important to Keep Servers Cool

Servers are at the heart of most small- and medium-sized business (SMBs) operations. One of the most often overlooked maintenance variables is temperature management. Understanding the importance of keeping your servers cool will help you implement measures that can prevent, at the very least, poor performance or at worst a full network disaster.

How does temperature affect servers?

Servers work best when kept at a constant, cool temperature. If a server's temperature rises above 70 degrees Fahrenheit, its reliability decreases as much as 50-percent. When servers run too warm, their performance will decrease which may cause connected workstations to exhibit slow response, as well.  Continued operation at high temperatures can lead to a server crash, resulting in either a temporary company outage or permanent data loss.

Effective methods to keep servers cool

Good ventilation

Server rooms are usually small and contain both servers and other devices. Without proper air circulation, hardware can raise the temperature of the room and your servers. It's critical to pay attention to airflow around hardware and any objects blocking vents. If you have no choice but to place your server in a small room, install a ventilation system that will let hot air escape from the room.

Keep them clean

A client recently contacted me on Sunday morning in a panic because their old but key server had shut down and would not boot back up. The server displayed a clear thermal error in place of an operating system.  It was only revived after opening it up, blowing out the debris from the inside, and installing a fan blowing directly into it to improve circulation.  We recommend annual cleaning, particularly if the servers are installed in a less than pristine environment.

Air conditioning system

While installing oscillating or window fans can be a helpful temporary solution, installing an air conditioner in your server room is the best way to keep servers cool. Make sure that the air conditioner you choose is sufficient for the size of the room. Don’t be tempted to use residential air conditioners. Instead, go for an industrial wall mount unit. They can be a bit costly and require semi-annual maintenance checks, but an industrial-grade air conditioner will ensure your servers are constantly operating in cool temperatures.

While manufacturers continue to build more resilient server hardware, proper care and maintenance still play a vital role in ensuring high operating quality and longevity. If you need more information about server management or have any other questions about your server setup, contact us today.