Passenger Lifts

Hydraulic Passenger Lifts

When looking for vertical platform lifts to carry passengers from floor to floor, you are sure to encounter terms such as hydraulic and traction when describing elevator equipment. Hydraulic passenger lifts are often associated with higher quality, longer lasting equipment that produces less noise but also cost a little more. The reasons for this are quite varied but with a basic understanding of the differences between lift equipment you will be much better equipped to make a choice between the two.

What is a Hydraulic Passenger Lift?

Traditional elevators are known nowadays as traction lifts and work by pulling the lift up and down the lift shaft using a system of cables and pulleys. In the past these lifts required an external machine room with lots of loud equipment in order to function properly, but modern advances in lift technology has allowed for machine room-less (MRL) lifts where the equipment itself is housed inside the shaft along with the lift car, usually at the top. These lifts also now operate in some cases almost as quietly as a hydraulic lift.

Hydraulic passenger elevators basically do away with the old system of cables and pulleys entirely and instead operate using a large cylinder and a hydraulic pressure system to push or pull the lift car through the shaft. These elevators normally always operate without an external machine room and place the hydraulic equipment above or below the main shaft. Largely due to the nature of hydraulic systems this type of elevator is normally much quieter than the traction alternative.

Why Do Hydraulic Lifts Often Cost More?

Hydraulic systems are inherently more complex than traction systems and the parts simply cost that bit more. In addition to the parts, they are often trickier to install and maintenance can often be a bit more expensive too. However, with that said there are many benefits to hydraulic passenger lifts that go beyond simply quieter operation. They are also often capable of quicker movement between floors with smoother starts and stops, delivering a higher level of comfort and less waiting time for passengers. For many residential and commercial buildings, concern for the comfort of passengers and frustration overrides whatever doubts may be brought up by the small increase in price.

Future-Proof Elevator Equipment

The truth is that hydraulic passenger lifts offer a much more robust solution for long-term use than traction elevators do. In addition to this, hydraulic elevators are more able to cope with change in use such as an increase in load and are much easier to modify with future advances in technology as this is where much of the research is still being done and traction elevators are slowly falling out of favour.

As mentioned briefly above, hydraulic elevators also take much less damage due to regular use than traction elevators do and therefore need less maintenance and are much less likely to break down. If you are looking to purchase a solid elevator installation that will last a good couple of decades at least with minimal downtime and high passenger comfort, a hydraulic elevator is probably the way to go.

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