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Tag Archive: elevator motors

  1. 5 Common Elevator Problems and Prevention Tactics


    From old operating systems to worn sheaves, there are a number of reasons why an elevator may be malfunctioning — and our team at Renown Electric is always available to help.

    Elevator Maintenance

    Many equipment failures can be prevented with proper inspection and preventative maintenance. Regular maintenance doesn’t just increase productivity by avoiding downtime — it’s also been shown to decrease energy consumption by 15%.

    Long wait times and frequent breakdowns are inconvenient and a sign of wear. Overheating, high energy use, and low power factor may not be obvious problems, but they incur hidden costs. Implementing simple elevator motor maintenance practices can help decrease expenses and downtime.

    Below, we examined some of the most common elevator problems and provided solutions to preventing elevator downtime:

    1. Problem: Worn Sheaves

    ✓ Solution: Sheave regrooving

    Sheave Regrooving

    Worn sheaves place extra wear on ropes, which in turn increases the level of wear on sheaves. This creates a cycle of destruction for both key components.

    Sheaves can be regrooved or replaced to prevent premature hoist rope failure, so be sure to check groove profiles to verify the fit between the ropes and the sheave.  Simple tools are available with magnetic standards and a straight edge to visually check if the grooves on the sheave a wearing evenly.

    2.  Problem: Power failure

    ✓ Solution: Infrared inspection

    Infrared Inspection

    Elevators demand a great deal of power from commercial building utility systems, so updates to the system’s voltage can affect motor operations or potentially even damage the elevator system. Elevators with any history of motor failures or operation issues should undergo a power quality survey.

    Infrared thermography measures drastic temperature changes and can identify possible trouble spots before they cause costly system failures.  Common faults such as over/under voltage can be seen easily with power quality surveys and fuses that are running hot can be quickly seen with infrared imaging before a motor loses a phase.

    3. Problem: Contamination

    ✓ Solution: Oil & lubrication analysis

    Oil Analysis

    When wear occurs, small metal particles are released in the oil and can interfere with the proper functioning of an elevator system. Similarly, improper lubrication or worn seals can cause contamination. Conduct an oil analysis to check the oil for various properties that may indicate contamination or wear inside of a motor.

    A high presence of bronze in the gear case oil can indicate premature wear on the crown gear of a geared elevator or high concentration of aluminum in your hydraulic tank may indicate pump housing wear in a hydraulic elevator.

    4. Problem: Noisy bearings or bearing malfunction

    ✓ Solution: Inductive absorbers

    Spherical Roller Bearing

    Bearing malfunction causes more than half of all motor failures. Noisy bearings are often attributed to vibrations within the motor. While variable frequency drives are helpful for decreasing your motor’s energy use, they introduce common mode current — a damaging byproduct that can increase these vibrations to dangerous levels through premature bearing wear caused by stray current.

    To address this challenge, consider using an inductive absorber, such as CoolBLUE, to absorb the currents and protect your system from potential breakdowns.  Additionally, ensure that all grounds are secured and connected to minimize troubles caused by electrical noise on the ground that may trip out systems or cause false counts in the system.

    5. Problem: Misaligned motor drive

    ✓ Solution: Motor alignment

    motor-alignmentWhen an electric motor is coupled to another piece of equipment, shaft alignment is critical. Without correct alignment, the motor bearings begin to wear. Shaft misalignment can be detected using advanced laser measuring equipment or by simply employing a straightedge and string.

    Alternatively, consider purchasing geared machines that employ flange mounted motors that do not require alignment if the machine is disassembled.

    5 Common Elevator Problems


    Other Solutions

    preventative-maintenance At Renown Electric, we offer

    preventative maintenance and on-site elevator repair services to customers across a broad range of industries.To learn how to avoid the causes of elevator malfunction altogether, check out our

    eBook: Preventative vs. Predictive Maintenance.

  • The True Cost of Poor Elevator Motor Maintenance

    Comments Off on The True Cost of Poor Elevator Motor Maintenance

    In the world of elevators, preventive maintenance is the key to keeping your equipment running in peak condition.

    Elevator systems can be an expensive investment with a life expectancy of 25 years or more. During this time, normal wear and tear will affect the equipment, requiring maintenance.

    An effective preventative maintenance program can help the bottom line of your business—not just from a cost-effective maintenance program, but also by keeping your elevators running smoothly. Ensuring that customers have reliable access to your business will keep them returning and ensure that they have a positive view of your company.

    Maintenance Costs

    Cover Cost Analysis


    Over time, elevator motors and related equipment becomes worn and will eventually need replacement. Preventing major failures will allow you to minimize the amount of downtime while the elevator is being repaired. This also means avoiding extremely costly overhauls.

    Consider our hypothetical scenario below. Assuming that unattended motors tend to break down every 4 years instead of 5, there are still four major emergency repairs scheduled over the same 25-year period — even with a new motor in the mix. These repairs will cost, on average, $750 in parts and $1,200 in labor. Over the 25-year standard lifetime, there will also be the installation of a new motor costin $11,400 and four emergency repairs totaling $7,800 — bringing our total to an additional $768 per year without preventative maintenance, or $19,200 over a 25-year period.


    Cost Analysis Chart

    Lack of maintenance can mean that elevator motors will fail prematurely and break down more frequently. The result from these breakdowns or full replacements is potentially tens of thousands of dollars in repair bills over the elevator’s lifetime.

    With a regular maintenance program, your qualified elevator mechanics  regularly inspect the equipment for faults, and then make repairs before a major failure occurs. Finding these failures keeps downtime, and inconvenience for customers and staff, at a minimum as well as saving your company money in the long run.

    Additional Benefits of Maintenance

    Elevator maintenance impacts the profitability of businesses in the building, as well as the marketability of a company. Customers who enter a building with no working elevator may perceive the company as unreliable.

    In addition, a business that relies on foot traffic may lose customers who cannot or do not want to climb stairs. All of this affects the bottom line of businesses, and all of these concerns are avoided with an elevator that remains in operation.

    Along with the financial benefits, properly maintained elevators provide:

    Learn More in Our New eBook

    Renown Electric is proud to offer our new eBook, Preventative Maintenance of Elevator Motors: A Cost Analysis, which outlines the costs and benefits of an elevator motor maintenance schedule. As an expert in the field, Renown provides a wide range of services and products that will help keep your elevator motors running in top condition.

    To learn about the full benefits and costs of elevator maintenance, download our free eBook today.

     Most Common Elevators
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