New Years Resolution for your TiVo – a UPS

Posted on January 3rd, 2006, by Michael

What’s the best thing you can do to keep your TiVo up and running? Get it on a UPS.

Here’s the basic idea: Your TiVo is a computer, and you probably have a UPS on your computer. For the same reasons, you should have one on your TiVo. It’s a computer also, and, frankly, the power supply in it likely isn’t as robust as the one in your computer.

If you’re wondering what a UPS is, it’s basically a battery that goes between your TiVo and your wall outlet. If the power drops – even a bit – then the UPS takes over and adds the power back into the equation from its battery. So the TiVo won’t see a power drop at all – and the drive inside the unit is much less likely to be damaged.

Many people have their units plugged into surge suppressors. That’s half the battle – those keep too much power from getting to the unit. But a UPS does both: it keeps too much or too little power from hitting the unit, and both can seriously damage a TiVo.

Consider this pretty inexpensive unit from Amazon, or find one at your local Staples or Office Depot. It’s a good investement.

We have more info on our site about using a UPS with your TiVo.

Please leave a comment

  1. John Beierwaltes Says:

    I just bought a 425va (230w) Battery Backup by CyberPower with serial shutdown of system if required .. it was for my wife’s new HP c6280 printer ..

    I’m guessing the 425va is total & 230w is ups. It looks the same as the suggested APC unit.

    Can I swap it out & use it on the DTiVo?

    Whats the power consumption on the DTiVo?

    I have APC Line Conditioners on the TV stuff where the new DTiVo will be used ..

  2. David Says:

    Whoa, that’s expensive. Can you recommend a quiet & cheap ups?

  3. Basil Bourque Says:

    I just bought this unit at a local Best Buy, on sale. $40

    About the size of half a Tivo.

    APC – 550VA Battery Back-Up System – Black
    Model: BE550G | SKU: 9307788

    Up to 65 minutes battery backup; 8 outlet.

    Sale: $39.99
    Reg. Price: $59.99
    You Save: $20.00

    Plugged in the Tivo and a smaller flatscreen LCD TV. They all seem happy together.

    2009-10-12

  4. Michael Says:

    Just an FYI – we don’t recommend plugging a TV into the backup+surge ports on these units, because the TV uses so much more power, it can drain the battery down fast.

  5. Claire Says:

    I just bought an upgrade HD for an ancient Tivo, a friend gave me. The HD didn’t work and I wanted more then 40hrs of tv recording.

    I found your prices very reasonable and service quick and easy.

    I am very pleased with the instructions. Changing out the HD took so little time I was amazed. I am a very happy Tivo watcher.

  6. Sue Says:

    I purchased refurbished TiVo (not HD) for a friend as a gift for Christmas. In the meantime she purchased a HD tv. I asked Weaknees if I coul return the unit, which they did with no problems.
    I also had my older TiVo repaired and was very satisfied with their service.

  7. Stewart Berman Says:

    A UPS for a TiVo is only helpfull if the power is only out for a short period of time so the UPS can keep the TiVo up. Unlike most systems a TiVo does not provide support for a safe shutdown triggered by a signal from the UPS. So, if the powere is out for an hour or so the UPS will be unable to continue to supply power to the TiVo and the TiVo will still experience a crash due to a power failure.

    The line of TiVos is one of the few computer lines that do not provide for a button to recycle the system or power it off without pulling the plug. (Yes, the newer software does provide a way to put it to sleep through menus but they are usless if the system hangs.)

  8. leslie lief Says:

    I promptly received an order that I placed and just wanted to say that everything about your WeaKnees including , web presentation, service, delivery, packaging, instruction demonstrated attention to detail and thorough planning.
    As a service business owner, over 37 years, it has been our goal to deliver excellence above price. WeaKnees ,you have accomplished that in all respects. Aside from being imspiring in an age where incompetence is abundant , it is uplifting.
    I would highly recommend WeaKnees to the world.

    Thanks

    L Lief

  9. Michael Says:

    Yes, but can the Tivo talk to the UPS via the USP port and perform a controlled shutdown ?

  10. Dana Says:

    A friend recommended WeaKnees when my TiVo crashed. I am so happy with the service and user friendly website. For those reasons I will bring all future TiVo business your way and recommend you to all my friends and family. Thanks again.

  11. WeaKnees Blog » Blog Archive » Care for Your TiVo During Power Outages Says:

    […] We generally recommend a UPS for just about everyone, and especially for situations with power fluctuations. But a UPS can only help short-term. The power it stores probably can sustain a DVR for a few hours. And it’ll be beeping that whole time, generally. See our earlier blog post for more info about a UPS working with your TiVo. […]

  12. William Says:

    I’ve been using TrippLite line conditioners for the AV systems, including home theater, for about 8 years now and have had good success. Most recently, an old R10 TiVo failed but that was a hard drive failure and Weaknees supplied the solution for that issue. We have more brownout and voltage surge issues in my rural area than power interruptions and the line conditioner solution has been very cost-effective. It is generally more expensive initially than a typical UPS of the same wattage but the units have been very reliable and maintenance free. I do use UPS for the WDS routers on the property and, in some cases, have been through two or three UPS (battery or unit failure) during the same period. If there’s a hard outage, the genset kicks in after about 45 seconds and the grid is disconnected. Generator output is notorious for being dirty, hence an additional reason for conditioners/UPS. Good luck.

  13. Gail Bean Says:

    We had our Tivo repaired and upgraded with a larger hard drive. Once we had it back, the Verizon Fios set top box (STB) started rebooting every time we turned the TV on. The Tivo was freezing the picture as well. Called Verizon and they suggested a heat issue. Sure enough, the STB was on top of the Tivo and the STB was hot to touch. It turned out the Tivo was so hot that you could not touch the bottom. I am glad I discovered this before it started a fire. The cooling fan in the rear seemed to be drawing air in rather than blowing it out. Was it reversed in the repair/upgrade process? I don’t plan to spend any more money on it or waste anymore time shipping it again from MA to CA to do a post mortem on it. For $5 more a month Verizon gave me a new STB with a DVR. Bye bye Tivo!

  14. Rosario Benty Says:

    I have 2 Tivo Premier series machines. They have been on a UPS since I bought them.
    Along with my computers and other entertainment equipment. I am a subscriber to
    American Electric Power and the delivery is truly undependable. My UPS(5 of them)
    has been my salvation.I hate to think what problems I would have without them.
    One of my Tivo’s has been locking up. WeakNess has had the unit twice and they claim there is nothing wrong with it. If there is something wrong with the system board they CANNOT fix it because of the Propriety nature of Tivo products. Thats when you bought the farm as far as the lifetime warranty goes. you have to buy another machine like
    Gail Bean did.

  15. Don Wiliams Says:

    Last week ordered a 6TB kit for my Roamio for $499. It has not arrived yet, but if I would have waited until today to order with coupon code of 6TBKIT, it would have been $30 less.
    Bummer.

    When I originally purchased my Tivo Roamio, I also got a UPS. I’ve had no problems, even during lighting storms.

Leave a Comment