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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are a few questions we often get about elevators and wheelchair lifts.  If you have a question that is not answered here, please use the form on this page to send us your inquiry. Or better, give us a call at (713) 360-7353

Q. How much will a residential elevator cost?

Many factors affect the final installed cost of an elevator such as number of floors, type of elevator, door openings, cab size, and any other options you may want. Installed traditional elevators start at $27,000, and installed vacuum elevators start at $35,000. But depending on the situation and installation site requirements, a vacuum elevator may be a less expensive solution for your home. There are so many considerations so we wrote a blog post about how much a home elevator costs that may help you understand in more detail. The best way to know what your options are and the cost of each is to schedule a free in-home consultation. One of our knowledgeable associates will look at your home’s architecture and give you all the details to make an informed decision.

Q. Do you repair or offer maintenance services for home elevators?

We service, repair, and maintain elevators installed by us. We offer affordable elevator maintenance plans to keep your equipment safe and in good working order.

Q. How often does a home elevator require service?

Periodic inspection and maintenance of your home elevator depends on they type of elevator. Traditional elevators such as hydraulic or traction drive elevators require annual service calls. Vacuum elevators require service about every 5 years (about 15,000 lifts).

Q. Is there a standard size home elevator?

While some sizes are more common than others, there is no standard residential elevator size. We do install the world’s smallest home elevator by PVE. One of the reasons that the PVE is the smallest is that it is one of our 3 models of shaftless home elevators. No shaft…smaller footprint, less construction, faster installation and more possible installation locations for your home elevator.

Q. Can home elevators be installed outdoors?

Yes! There are many possible home elevator installation locations including the ability to install home elevators outdoors.

Q. What is an elevator pit?

That is a recessed area excavated in your home’s foundation so that your traditional home elevator car will land evenly with the 1st floor.

Q. Is there a pitless home elevator?

Yes! Because pitless elevators require little to no excavation, they can be installed more easily than traditional hydraulic or traction home elevators that go in a hoistway or shaft. Pneumatic Vacuum Elevators (PVE) do not require a pit, machine room, or shaft construction. Easier installation means less construction, lower costs, and less time spent without access to parts of your home. Read more about pitless home elevators.

Q. Do all elevators require a machine room?

No they don’t, we have traditional elevators that have everything go inside the hoistway, called machine room-less (MRL) elevators. Plus, vacuum elevators only require a small head unit that can be installed above the elevator or up to 30 linear feet away. These MRL home elevator options save precious space for living and storage in your home.

Q. How many floors can a home elevator travel?

Residential elevators can travel vertically up to 50 feet of travel and 5 to 6 stops.

Q. What is a LU/LA elevator?

This is a LU/LA elevator is commercial elevator designed for low-rise buildings with light to moderate traffic becoming ADA compliant per ASME A17.1 Section 5.2 and the specifications of the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). It stands for limited-use/limited-application. They are typically used in buildings with just a few floors that are typical of low-rise offices, schools, apartments, and retail use where full-scale commercial elevators are impractical.

Q. What happens if I lose electricity while in the elevator?

It depends on the type of elevator you have, but all our home elevators are installed according to code and come standard with an emergency battery back-up. Read more about how home elevator systems are designed to keep you safe during a power outage. And no, the elevator will not free-fall…read about some other elevator myths.

Q. What happens if the elevator breaks while I’m in between floors?

Although very rare, the elevator lock in place keeping you safe. And elevator building codes require we install an alarm system and a telephone in every elevator. Note this is one significant difference between an elevator and a through-the-floor lift (TTF) in that TTF lifts are not installed according to elevator building codes so their cost-savings comes at a price of safety and peace of mind.

Q. What happens if I overload my home elevator?

All residential elevators (any elevator, really) has its weight capacity posted on a label inside the cab. If that capacity is exceeded, the elevator will not move.

Q. What is the difference between a Wheelchair Lift and Vertical Platform Lift (VPL)?

They are the same thing.

Q. What exactly is a wheelchair lift?

This is platform that will lift people in a wheelchair or other mobility assistance device like a scooter to travel from one level to the next. The change in elevation may be a few inches up to 14′ (Texas code maximum). It is done either vertically with a Vertical Platform Lift that is much like a “stripped down” elevator or inclined running over a staircase, which is called an Inclined Platform Lift (IPL). NOTE: IPL are currently unavailable.

Q. Is there a standard size for wheelchair lift?

In a commercial application there is. The smallest size allowed by code is 36″x 48″.

Q. How high can a wheelchair lift go?

The highest a wheelchair lift can go in Texas is 14′.

Q. Does a wheelchair lift need a machine room?

No, it does not. All the equipment goes in the adjacent shroud/mast.

Q. Is a wheelchair lift or a LU/LA elevator right for my building?

Glad you asked! We have put together a comparison of wheelchair lifts and LU/LA elevators for commercial and other low-use buildings.


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