Throughout the world, many buildings use  devices made to lift people from one floor to the next and these can include escalators and elevators and other forms of lifts. This type of transportation from one section of a building to another and from one floor to another is something that is found in all major cities throughout the world. New York City, Los Angeles, London, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Paris, Berlin, and thousands of other cities scattered across the planet all depend on these type of devices in order to help people to conveniently and to safely go from one section of a building to another and from one floor to another.

All of the different types of devices have been installed at different times and decades throughout the years. This means that the condition and quality and the advancement of the technology varies widely. The need for these types of devices is only going to increase in the future. Not only are more and more buildings going to be increasingly higher but also most cities are seeing elderly that are living longer and all of these factors continue to increase the need for the most technologically advanced and safest lift devices that can be provided.

The big challenge that many cities have is determining exactly what upgrades and improvements should be made and how to make those things cost effective and determine which one should be implemented and in what situation. Because so many of these systems and devices run almost night and day, they have what would be considered under any definition, to be heavy use. Not only is it running almost all of the time but the amount of people that are on these devices or inside of these devices are significant and that puts a lot of wear and tear on the lifts.

The only way to keep these devices safe and functional is to have ways to effectively update them and to make sure that they are working safely and that there are effective methods for maintaining them despite their heavy use. Here, we take a look at 7 lift modernisation ideas that are meant to improve the overall functionality and safety of these devices.

Why Should Lift Devices Be Modernised?

These devices can be considered to be important modes of transportation inside of buildings. We certainly wouldn’t want to be driving around and antiquated and outdated automobiles and other modes of transportation on the road because we understand how dangerous and inconvenient that can be. The same is true with these types of devices inside of buildings. People cannot typically walk up dozens or even hundreds of floors. Often when buildings are several city blocks, it’s impractical for people to have to walk that distance.

For that reason, people depend on lift devices as a mode of transportation inside of buildings. Since many of these buildings make up the large majority of a city’s landscape, then these types of devices are every bit as important to daily life, business, and other activities that are done on a daily basis in cities throughout the world. The problem is that many of these devices were installed decades ago and have had only the most basic of ongoing maintenance.

Whenever the existing lifts were installed in their respected buildings,  they were installed using the latest technology at that particular time. But many of these buildings were built in the 1960s or 1970s or 1980s and the technology that is available today is substantially more advanced than it was at that time. The ability to have lifts that are safer and that function better and that are more convenient are all available and when and where possible it is necessary to upgrade the lifts in those older buildings.

It should be noted that existing lifts, when maintained properly, can certainly be considered safe. Many of them will not be state-of-the-art but if maintained periodically they can be considered generally safe. The biggest thing with improving those devices to a more modern level of technology will be that it makes them more safe, more comfortable and more reliable.

Modernization Guidelines

Some countries are establishing guidelines for the modernization of these devices. The key point for these guidelines is to help responsible people improve and enhance their lift devices so that they are reliable, safe, comfortable, and effective. In most countries, these guidelines are just that, and each building owner or building maintenance manager is able to make their own decisions as to what improvements that they make as long as they follow standard protocols for keeping the lifts safe.

If a company or maintenance management team is looking to modernize their lift devices it is recommended that they get in contact with contractors who specialize in these types of improvements to help determine what is reasonable and feasible in modernizing your particular buildings lift devices.

Recommended Duties For ‘Responsible People’ Who Manage Lift Maintenance

It is recommended that anyone who is in charge of lift maintenance work directly with a lift contractor to determine a reasonable and periodic maintenance schedule for all lifts, escalators, and elevators. Whenever modernization or alterations of the lifts need to be carried out the one in charge of managing the maintenance should hire a registered lift contractor to perform the work needed and an engineer that is registered for lift devices to test the devices thoroughly after all work has been completed.

The person or organization in charge of managing the maintenance of lift devices in a building or for a company will make the necessary arrangements to perform routine, regular maintenance and repairs as well as arranging for any modernization or upgrades needed. The maintenance manager will be responsible for contacting those who are registered or licensed for that type of work. It is also necessary to get a registered contractor to perform examinations and inspections of all lift equipment to make sure that it is functional, safe and compliant.

Anytime that wear and tear is found on the devices or any of its working parts then it will be necessary to repair or replace those parts and in many cases, it might be necessary or at least recommend it to modernize that equipment. As mentioned above, it is recommended that when any of this type of work is done that a registered engineer should be contracted to come in and test the lift and make sure that everything is working as it should be and that the lift is safe and compliant.

Special Tips

The responsible person for the management of a building’s lift devices will need to consider any technical feasibility considerations as well as available space and the cost of modernizing these devices. These considerations will need to be made each time that there is a consideration for modernizing or replacing old equipment.

1. Make sure that all routine maintenance is performed by a registered lift contractor.

2. Have a routine method for finding and recommending the need for improvements on existing lifts and how to carry out regular maintenance.

3. Whenever a problem is found then it will be the responsible person’s job to determine what modernization is applicable to improve the device’s safety, comfort, and reliability.

What Are The Safety Equipment Devices In Lifts?

Overspeed Governor

It’s important that lift devices never exceed a certain amount of speed. To ensure this an over speed governor is put in place which regulates the speed of the device and prevents it from surpassing a certain safe speed. If it is detected that the device is moving too quick the over speed governor will bring the device to a stop.

Door Locking Device

You must have an outer door and an inner door along with mechanical locking devices which lock automatically to prevent any hazards.

Safety Gear

If it is detected that the normal stopping and going of an elevator is not functioning properly or if the device exceeds a certain speed, then this feature will be used as an emergency brake to bring the device to a stop.


This device is used whenever there is a safety issue and it helps to ensure that when the device comes to a stop that the impact of the device is such that injuries are minimized.

7 Lift Modernisation Ideas

1. Install A Protection Device To Prevent Unintended Car Movement

If the lift moves while the doors are open then it causes a number of potential hazards that need to be avoided. It may be passengers that are exiting or entering the lift or it could be carts or other things that have not fully exited or entered that can be damaged. Owners, or the person in charge of managing this, may need to consider upgrading self-monitoring devices or the braking system as one of the most important upgrades among the 7 lift modernisation ideas.

2. Replace Single Break Devices With A Double Brake System

It is common for older devices to have a single break device which means it is possible that could fail in an emergency situation. Installing the newer double brake system is considerably safer. If one fails the other will almost certainly work.

3. Put In A CCTV System And An Intercom

If a person becomes trapped inside of a lift device it’s a very scary experience. But if they can call to someone and they know that that person will then make sure that things are being done to get them out, it is considerably safer and more relaxing for them. If an alarm system goes off then they know that there’s someone that has been alerted and that they will not just be left in there without anyone knowing. Among the 7 lift modernisation ideas, this is one that passengers will greatly appreciate.

4. Install A Protection Device To Prevent An Ascending Car From Exceeding A Safe Speed

If an ascending car reaches a speed that is too great there is the risk it will hit the top of the well which could injure passengers. This type of protection will detect the rate of speed and automatically bring the device to a stop.

5. Put In Automatic Rescue Devices

If there is a power outage it can cause passengers to be stuck inside of the device. If an automatic rescue device has been installed, however, then there will be a few minutes of operation that continues and allows passengers to exit the lift.

6. Safety Edge Door Lock Installation

The installation of a safety edge door lock prevents a passenger from forcibly opening the door during movement. If a passenger gets stuck in the door it will automatically cause the door to open.

7. Obstruction Switch

Suspension ropes become worn over time and can cause them to break. An obstruction switch helps reduce the wear and tear on the ropes.

Following these ideas will go a long ways in ensuring the safety and comfort of these devices. Upgrading and modernizing is good for business and for the people using the devices.