Elevators typically last around 25 years.  Elevators will show you that they are reaching the end of their lives by having constant issues.  You will also hear the words/phrases such as “obsolete” and “no longer manufactured” from your elevator contractor. This is when you know it is time to consider modernization.  As the elevator ages, you will see increased down-time and more callbacks than ever before.  We always recommend our clients get a modernization price, at this time, to avoid an emergency shut down. Most parts take 6-12 weeks to obtain, so if no planning is involved, your elevator could be down without notice for several months.  This can put a high strain on building managers, owners, residents, and staff.  Contact us today for a budget proposal on your old equipment.  Modernizations can come in all forms. Below are the basics of what is entailed when modernizing your elevator equipment.


Modernizing your controller has many benefits. New controllers are software-based and come with LCD screens that allow technicians to plug in a tool to understand what faults the elevator is showing and can quickly and easily help them pinpoint issues when troubleshooting, saving the tech time, which, in turn, saves customers money.  PEAK’s controllers are non-proprietary and very simple to install and troubleshoot.


The old-style power units are what are called “dry-mount” power units. Dry-mount power units have all equipment, pump motor, and valve on the bottom of the tank while the oil sits above the components. This allows a lot of room for failure. Not only are these very noisy, but they will allow oil to leak from the parts all over the machine room floor, causing quite a mess.  In modernization, we now install what is called a submersible power unit. This means that the pump motor and valve are all submersed in oil. They are much quieter, and should any component leak, the oil will leak back into the tank, preventing a complete machine room disaster.


Beginning January 1, 2022, Colorado has adopted and will fully enforce the 2019 elevator code. This code includes video monitoring in all COPs (Control Operating Panels) inside the elevator. The COP is where the pushbuttons, fire service, emergency phone, and other safety features are housed. Video monitoring is now required to be incorporated. This allows answering services to see inside the elevator when someone pushes the emergency button. This can save lives and also money for clients. Often, elevator answering services receive ghost calls from a rider or children in the elevator. All elevator contractors must respond to this call when no one answers the old system.  This often happens over over-time when calls are the most expensive from any provider.  This new monitoring feature will help eliminate the need for the tech to show up on-site to verify no one is trapped or injured and save the client money from these ghost calls.


An outdated and unattractive cab can convince prospective tenants or clients to go elsewhere. Although mechanical repairs and improvements are a property manager’s top priorities, cab maintenance and upgrades can prevent accidents or lawsuits. A broken handrail or pitted floor can cause a fall or serious injury. Some of the upgrades involved in cab modernization include:

  • New flooring
  • Lighting updates
  • New panels and buttons
  • New handrails
  • Door and cladding replacement
  • New ceiling

These are only some components included in a modernization. For a complete list of what is included or a budgetary modernization proposal, please contact us for a free on-site consultation.  Step Elevator will give you a full workup of the cost so you can begin to better plan for the elevator to avoid these unnecessary surprises and downtime.


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