D&D Elevator on Friday, December 1, 2017 at 12:00:00 am
Time flies and a significant percentage of elevators in the field today are aging to the point of obsolescence, with many systems and components in need of upgrade. While property managers and building owners may recognize the need to rethink their elevator equipment, budget and timing may be factors for some in implementing a full modernization all at once. At the least, consideration should be given to certain components of the elevator system, installed 20 to 30 years ago, which have outlived their useful life, or which have been rendered obsolete by technology advancements and updated code requirements.
For example, as was covered in a previous blog in this space, if a building today is operating hydraulic elevators with Single-Bottom-Cylinders installed prior to 1972, this stands in violation of various state and city codes, as well as the requirements of ASME A 17.1-2000. For several years now, code requirements have called for the use of Double Bottom Cylinders and the replacement of older single bottom installations, which should be upgraded as soon as possible. As also previously covered here, old controller systems – including ones made by major manufacturers such as Staley, AB SEE, Otis, Westinghouse, Dover, Armor and others – may require updating. Aside from conforming to code requirements, updating controllers can provide many other benefits, including faster response time, increased ride comfort and enhanced energy efficiency.
Old mechanical starters, making for bumpy rides, can now be replaced by newer “soft starters.” Upgrading door equipment, by eliminating the older/mechanical bumper edges – and replacing them with the current infrared safety edges or the new “light curtains” – improves passenger safety and reduces operating noise. Replacing old fluorescent and incandescent lighting fixtures with modern LED lighting helps save energy and enables stylish, contemporary looks for cab interiors. And upgrades to machines, governors, power units and traction equipment can all help vastly improve elevator operating efficiencies, ride quality, and avoid costly downtime.
All this can be very confusing. But, what is certain, because of the ravages of age and protracted operation, and the obsolescence of a growing number of parts, elevators and their performance do suffer from deterioration. As tenants in residential environments are trending older – and occupants of commercial properties have high expectations in an environment extremely competitive for tenants – keeping one’s elevators “up to snuff” is becoming increasingly essential.
The experts at D&D Elevator stand ready to help you evaluate your particular needs and smoothly sort out the confusion – to cost-efficiently achieve code-compliance and safety – and boost your peace-of-mind!