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  • How Often Do You Think About Elevator Maintenance?

    (Image by Steven Depolo,

    Millions of people rely on elevators every day to get them up and down from floor to floor in buildings all across the country. While they are a source of convenience for us, we just assume that they are safe and in proper working order. Have you ever stopped to consider what goes into proper elevator maintenance and who is performing this work? What type of training must a person have to qualify for a job like this?

    Not just anyone can perform this type of job. The person must be authorized by the building owner to perform this work or should be a licensed repair technician. This type of work can be very dangerous, and if done incorrectly can put many lives in jeopardy. Any unqualified person who is performing this job should be reported to the local housing authority or the property authorities, because repair violations can be prosecuted.

    Routine inspections should be performed every six months by authorized elevator consultants if the unit is used to transport people or animals and annually if it is used to transport inanimate objects or industrial loads. Whenever there are any major changes in structure or use the unit should be inspected. Other causes for inspection include when there has been any major damage or repairs to the unit, or if it has just been installed in a building.

    Routine elevator maintenance should include the inspection of many parts. All of these parts need to be kept up to code, and all inspections should be documented, and the records kept for future reference. All of the gears and doors should be inspected for wear and tear. All of the components of the main drive system should be inspected for wear as well as lubrication. The safety gear should also be closely checked for any signs of damage. The suspension ropes are extremely important, and should be checked for any signs of breaking or wear. Equally important are the back-up safety ropes and the emergency braking system. If any of these items show signs of wear they should be immediately repaired. The last system that should be examined is the hydraulic system. This system should be examined and oiled on a regular basis, so that the unit will continue to run smoothly. There should be a complete list of all parts and items that need to be inspected on a regular basis included with the owner's manual to the unit. If an owner has any questions, they should check the local regulations in his or her area.

    It is clear just how important of a role proper elevator maintenance plays in the function of a safe unit. When you think about the number of people who ride elevators every day in this country, it is scary to think what could happen if one was not functioning properly. It is certainly much easier for an owner to make sure that their unit is in proper working order than to deal with the potential injures or casualties that could be caused by a unit that was not working properly.

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