Types Of Elevators


There are all different types of elevators for different types of buildings. Elevators carry people and anything else that needs to be taken to the different levels of a building, within a certain weight capacity, of course. Back in the 1850’s structural frames begin being built with a taller structure to them and elevators became a common thing. The thing that actually made elevators popular was the safety mechanism of Elisha Otis’s. Nearly all of the more modern buildings consisting of more than one floor are required to have access from floor to floor by means of more than just stairs.

The main three kinds of elevators that are most used are:

With each of the above types having different variations.

Gearless Traction & Geared Elevators W/ Machine Room

Gearless traction and Geared Elevators use ropes to lift them, the ropes pass over a wheel, the wheel is attached to the electric motor which is located on top of the elevator shaft. These are use for the mid and the high-rise elevators and have a faster travel time than the hydraulic ones. These elevators use a counter weight making them run more efficient because it offsets the weight of the car elevator, including the weight of the passengers, taking the extra work off of the elevator. Elevators with a geared traction use a gearbox which is attached to its motor. The gearbox is what drives the wheel and moves the ropes. Elevators with geared traction have the ability to go speeds of up to 500 feet per minute. However, the maximum distance of travel for an elevator with a geared traction is only around 250 feet.

Elevators with gear-less traction also have a wheel, it is attached to the motor directly. Elevators with gear-less traction can go speeds of up to 2,000 feet per minute, having a maximum distance of travel about 2,000 feet, making them the only ones used for high rise buildings. Elevators with gear-less traction are a little high on the initial cost, maintenance cost stay at a steady medium, and are more efficient than are the elevators with geared traction. Checking a traction elevator’s ropes and sheaves for wear and tear at regular intervals is important. As these wear their traction in between the sheave and the cables get reduced, causing slippage, and they will continue to slip more and more, reducing the elevators efficiency and making it a dangerous situation.

Elevators with traction have restrictions on height, as these are governed by the elevators length and weight the cables/ropes have. There are new materials that can be used for traction elevators making them stronger and yet, lighter, the material is a carbon fiber which allows elevators with traction to reach even newer heights.

No Machine Room Elevators (MRL):

No Machine room elevators (MRL) is another way to say traction elevators, which do not have a machine room located over the elevators shaft. Instead, it is located in the over-ride space. When it needs repairs to be done it has to be accessed through the cab of the elevator (a place found at the top of the elevator). The control boxes can be found in the control room, this is located at the highest landing (about 150 feet from the machine, across from the elevators shaft.

With a maximum travel distance as high as 250 feet, machine room less elevators have speeds in the excess of 500 feet a minute. The MRL and geared traction elevators, both have about the same initial start-up costs, as well as their maintenance costs, Yet, the MRL elevators have a much lower consumption of energy than the geared elevators. Both, the MRL and the gear less traction elevators are nearly equal in being energy efficient, both are reliable, and they both take up less space. But, the MRL elevators are the best choice and more popular for mid-rise buildings with travel distance as high as 250 feet.

One of the main reasons that the United States has been slow about adopting the MRL elevators is due to the building codes having provisions about the motor being located in the elevators hoist-way. However, these codes have been being gradually changed. Yet, it would be in your best interest to consult with your local authorities regarding a specific MRL elevator.

Hydraulic Elevators:

Hydraulic elevators have a piston that is located at the elevator’s base to support it. The piston shoves the elevator upward while the motor moves a fluid (usually an oil, but it could be a different type of hydraulic fluid) into the piston. As the elevator is descending a fluid is released through a value in the piston. These types of elevators are use in buildings that have 2 to 8 floors, traveling at speeds up to 200 ft. per minute.

On the lowest level, across from the elevator is where the hydraulic elevator machine room is located. The conventional type of hydraulic elevators has an sheave which extends under the elevator’s floor to the elevator pit, and as the elevator is descending, the sheave accepts as the pistons are retracting. Several of the configurations has a telescoping piston which will collapses, requiring a shallower hole under the pit.

The maximum travel distance is around 60 ft. Hydraulic elevator’s that are hole-less may have the piston on either side of the elevator’s cab. For this configuration the telescoping pistons have been fixed in the base of the pit, so it does not need a sheave, nor a hole under the pit. Having a telescoping pistons will let an elevator travel at a distance of 50 ft., whereas, a non-telescoping piston only a travel distance of up to 20 ft. There is a combination of different ropes used with Roped Hydraulic Elevator’s, with a piston that moves the elevator. Having a maximum travel distance around 60 ft.

The initial cost for hydraulic elevator’s will be lower, as well as the maintenance costs in the future when compared to the cost of other elevator’s. On the other hand, hydraulic elevator’s will use more energy than other elevator’s, the reason is that it’s electric motor is working against gravity while it is forcing the hydraulic fluids into the pistons. There is however, a significant drawback in the hydraulic elevator’s, which is that it’s hydraulic fluid may sometimes leak and this can create a serious environmental hazard. The two key reasons that hydraulic elevators have not been as popular recently as they have been in the past due to the environmental risks involved and their high usage of energy.

Thank you for enjoying “Different Types OF Elevators“, stay tuned for more from the Elevator experts at Arizona Elevator Solutions.


Elevator Modernization Factors


Thinking of Elevator Modernization – Here Are Some Decision Factors to Go By

It is time for that aged elevator to get upgraded, according to your Elevator Contractor a modernization is in store. For those that do not understand the meaning of all this, keep reading! This post is to help you to understand the importance and the benefits of having an elevator modernization, letting you ponder on whether or not it will be worth the cost.

Elevator Modernization benefits fall into two different categories: Improved safety & Improved technology.

Elevator Codes & Safety:

Over the year’s elevators have caused injuries to people in different ways and under different circumstances, this being brought to the attention to the developers and manufactures created the development of safety solutions to reduce the chance of those incidents happening again. New requirements, referred to as the elevator code gurus, was eventually a requirement for new elevators. However, since the older elevators are considered the grandfather of design, are not being force into being upgraded with the code. What is saying? It is saying, “that the older elevators over a long period of time can become very unsafe” as it will not be up to code.

The Following Will Increase Your Elevator Safety:

Emergency phone – A phone that allows one to get emergency help when it is needed. Now there is the 2010 version for the elevator code which tests the phone each hour to make certain it is in working order at the time an emergency comes up.

Fire Service – With this feature the elevator will automatically go to and open the doors, shutting down. It is connected to the buildings alarm system and it will set off an alarm. The elevator will not be able to be used by anyone once everyone is off, which keeps others safe.

Door Restrictor – Keeping the elevator door from opening or being open at the wrong time(s). Preventing doors from being open when in between floors so that passengers cannot fall down the shaft.

Light Curtain – The older elevators may still have the bump pads, whereas the updated version uses infrared beams that merely form a curtain with the use of lights that automatically sense anyone in the doorway.

Keep in mind that even though most of the things listed above can be installed by a non-professional, it is always best to be on the safe side and replace the whole system to get all of the safety features and updated technology.

For instance, when getting an entire new elevator modernization, it will include all of the following:

  • Equipment that opens and closes elevator doors
  • Door Restrictor
  • Button panels/emergency phone/fire service
  • New Technologies

Main Reason To Modernize Your Elevator

The main reason one should modernize an elevator is for the safety of the people. Of course, after taking into consideration of people’s safety one should consider the efficiency and quicker response that will come from having newer technology.

A Quicker Ride – The wait time component of the time of travel is decreased when using acceleration and deceleration electronically controlled dispatching smart systems. These are what distributes elevators to different floors and pick up the people waiting to use them.

Elevators Can Learn – Modernized elevators tend to learn traffic patterns.

Acceleration – Modernization makes the acceleration and deceleration much quicker. Combining this with doors that open and close quicker reduces the time it will take altogether.

Destination Dispatch – Passengers type in the floors they want to go to and the elevator then groups passengers by the floor numbers,this let the elevator tell passengers which elevator to take in order to get where they are going the fastest. Including passengers having cards that are programmable to use instead of punching in numbers.

Green Motors – Having a newer motor could decrease the cost of electric by 40%.

Regenerative Drives – For those elevators that are over twenty years of age they can be re-fitted with a newer regenerative drive, which can transform its brake force into energy that is reusable, and this is then circulated into the buildings system.

LEDs in the Elevators – Using a LED lighting system will be less costly, as it will use only half the amount of electricity and burn five times longer.

Buttons – These can be used for call buttons and even in the elevator car buttons saving a little on the cost of energy.

Hibernation – In most of the newer elevators. It will save of cost of electricity by turning off when not in use, such as turning off the lights and fans.

Return On Investment (ROI)

Each elevator is going to have a different Return On Investment (ROI),as that will depend on its age and equipment being used at the current time. To find out if you are a candidate for an elevator modernization consult a professional. They can give you an estimate, as well as let you know if you actually need one or not. It may be to your best interest to get a second opinion, just to make you feel better about it.

Getting more than one opinion can broaden your perspective, which may help you in the decision making of what to do. However, should you decide to wait a little longer on modernizing, keep in mind that the safety of the people is what matters the most. There is always the possibility of keeping the people safer by installing a few of the listed items above yourself.

Free Elevator Modernization Surveys

To request a free survey and quotation for your next elevator modernization project in Arizona, CALL AES AT 480-557-7600 TODAY!!

5 Tips For Better Elevator Maintenance In Tempe, Arizona

5 Tips For Better Elevator Maintenance In Arizona

Since their invention, elevators have enjoyed use and popularity as an expected fixture in any multi-storied building.  High traffic facilities such as commercial offices and hospitals may use elevators over a hundred times a day, usually with little notice of the elevator itself.

Typically, elevators tend only to be noticed when they fail to run or run with issues.  However, dealing with constant (or even intermittent) issues with your facility’s elevator doesn’t need to be a recurring theme.  Keep these tips in mind next time you’re thinking about the maintenance of your own building’s elevators.

  1. Be proactive

Regular inspection is key in maintaining the order of your elevators.  Regular inspection ensures that you become aware of any potential issues that may need repair, as well as provides you with a general sense of the elevator’s overall condition.  Are the elevators adequately modernized or is an upgrade in order?

Understanding the elevators’ condition is helpful when trying to align your operations and capital budgets with your allowance for upcoming maintenance tasks.

  1. Maintain them regularly

With the numerous demands that come with managing a large facility, it is difficult to keep from falling into a more reactive approach to maintenance.  That is, issues that are unseen are then unattended to until the problem grows to more noticeable proportions.  This leads to repairs that are only reactive, and not preventative.

Elevators that are out of order are not only a headache but a major inconvenience; which is why FacilitiesNet recommends keeping a regular maintenance schedule.  Staying up to date with the service helps keep minor issues from cropping up; thus saving you money, time and hassle.  Additionally, regular maintenance helps extend the life of the elevator, which will free up some of your budget for other improvements.

  1. Prioritize Safety

Obviously, maintaining the safety of an elevator should be of the highest priority.  This concern extends to not only the passengers, but the maintenance team that will be conducting future maintenance and repairs.

ASME is the governing organization for elevator maintenance.  In their Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators, they outline the importance of having a written maintenance program.  The written schedule they recommend is very useful in creating and sustaining a regular maintenance pattern, which will in turn ensure the safety of the elevator’s passengers.  Building managers can even store a written guide in their CMMS for easy access, and repair teams can update the guide with repairs in real time.

  1. Understand the Potential Issues, and Get Prepared

Understanding the most common issues with elevator operations will be helpful in creating a schedule for repairs.  For instance, Facilities.Net notes that nearly 70% of service calls on elevators are because of non-functioning doors.

To reduce the likelihood of encountering this issue consider using a closed-loop door operator.  It’s a system which monitors the doors’ opening and closing speeds and compares the number to predefined standards.  Upon comparison, the operator will apply any additional force that’s necessary for more consistent operation.  While it is an investment, closed-loop operators will be well worth the money saved in future maintenance and repairs.

  1. Remember the contractors

Though you may be comfortable taking care of minor elevator issues yourself, larger and more involved issues may call for outside help.

To help you find the most reliable contractors for your repairs, the National Association of Elevator Contractors has outlined several programs to point you in the right direction.  For instance, next time you’re considering contractors, go with the one that’s affiliated with the NAEC’s Program.  Additionally, try to find a contractor who’s associated with the NAEC’s Certified Elevator Technician program.

If you are looking for elevator maintenance in Tempe, Arizona, you have found the right place. Arizona Elevator Solutions provides elevator maintenance, repair, modernizing, and more.