8 Important Things to Consider When Installing an Elevator
An elevator can add value to your home and make it easier to get around, but only if it’s installed correctly. So let’s have a look on things to consider when installing an elevator. If you don’t pay attention to these eight important considerations when installing an elevator, you could end up having problems with it later on down the road. The smart thing to do when installing an elevator is to get all the information you need and make sure everything goes smoothly from the very beginning.
1) Plan Around Your Space
Before you begin construction, plan your elevator carefully. Your elevator shaft will need at least 35 square feet of headroom and 20 square feet of space in each direction for doors, plus room for hallways or corridors. Be sure to work with a local elevator contractor who can help design your installation before tearing down any walls. It’s also important to choose your elevator company carefully and make sure they are properly insured and bonded.
2) Determine The Size of the Machine
Before you head out to buy a new elevator, be sure you know how big it’s going to be. If you can, visit your building and get a rough measurement of its height from floor to ceiling. This will ensure that you have enough room for your new machine. You don’t want to find out after installing it that your elevator takes up too much space or doesn’t fit through doors and hallways—this is not only inconvenient but unsafe as well.
3) Think About Security & Accessibility
There are two things that must be considered when planning for an elevator installation. First, you need to make sure it fits in with your home or building’s overall plan and will blend in with its aesthetics. Second, you need to consider how people will get on and off once it’s installed. An improperly installed elevator can be a real problem if people can’t figure out how it works or if they find themselves unable to access or exit due safety concerns. It may not seem like a big deal now, but once you’ve got your elevator installed you want people using it—not avoiding it because they’re afraid of getting stuck!
4) Identify Areas Where an Elevator Can Be Added
Not every building is a good candidate for elevator installation. Think carefully about where your elevator needs to go. The most convenient place would be near a parking garage, office area, or other high-traffic location in your building. It may even be ideal if you can install your elevator inside of another structure that already exists—this will save you time and money on installation! If you think about it in advance, you might even find that there are other buildings nearby that also need elevators installed; if so, use your expertise to negotiate with potential clients and charge them for installing their elevators at a reduced rate. This increases your profits on all jobs!
5) Check Your Residential Code for Any Restrictions
Most building codes require you to install elevators in commercial structures over a certain square footage. However, residential homes may have some restrictions, as well. Your local code enforcement office will let you know what is required for your specific structure. Additionally, many areas are implementing elevator safety regulations for new elevator installations, so it’s important that you check with your local building department before planning your new elevator project.
6) Get a Licensed Electrician on Board
Getting an electrician on board is important to ensure your elevator is up to code and safe. If you’re planning on installing a residential elevator, it’s vital that you hire someone who has lots of experience installing elevators for homes. Doing so will save you time, money, and heartache down the road. Make sure that your elevator installation is handled by a licensed electrician with plenty of years under his or her belt (ideally 10+)—your life depends on it! Your local Licensing Board should be able to point you in the right direction; if not, find one online. When searching for a local electrician online, look for reviews from previous customers as well as recommendations from family and friends in your area.
7) Have A Certified Elevator Professional on Hand
A great elevator is only as good as its installer. That’s why you should hire a certified elevator professional, or CEP, to design and install your new lift. Having a CEP on hand guarantees that you have someone who is versed in all aspects of elevator safety; these professionals know all about proper platform heights, wheelchair access and electrical systems for example. With a CEP on staff, it’s possible for your elevator installation process to be problem-free! This can save you time and headaches down the road. It also allows you to completely focus on business without having to worry about how your lift will work once it’s installed. A great plan is one that includes a CEP from start to finish!
8) Research Different Brands and Machines
While you can find many quality elevators for less than $100,000 (sometimes a lot less), it’s important to remember that cheap is not always good. Cheap elevators are very often unsafe, and will cost you more in maintenance and down time. While looking into different brands and machines, take a look at the company that installs them. You want someone who cares about their reputation. A reputable company will be in your community for years or decades, providing great service and workmanship on every job they do. If they don’t care about their reputation, what does that say about how they treat your property?
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