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2 Different Types of Home Elevators 

Home elevators are different from commercial elevators. A home elevator is usually installed in a residence, duplex, penthouse, or bungalow. 

In most cases, elevators for homes have no set standards, which leads to consumer exploitation by elevator companies, including branded elevator companies. As a result, consumers end up buying locally manufactured lifts from businesses. Therefore, you must know what is a home elevator before installing one in your house.  Following are two different types of home elevators mainly manufactured for residential use. 

Types of Home Elevators

Depending on the drive system, broadly there are 2 different types of lifts. 

  1. Hydraulic
  2. Traction

1. Hydraulic

Hydraulic elevator systems have been in existence for decades. So, over the years, It has proven itself to be robust and reliable. 


  • It uses a piston and pump. Due to its simpler design, it is an economically viable solution. 
  • It comes with an oil pump and a controller located in a control cabinet. One can install them in places where noise is not an issue — such as the garage or in the open. This makes the experience from the inside of the lift very quiet. 
  • The pump used in this lift can be of two types. A standard pump or a submerged pump. 
  • Under normal operating conditions, oil flows between the hydraulic ram and the rupture valve. As a result, if something were to happen, such as the oil hose bursting, the rupture valve would immediately stop the flow of oil and bring the lift to a complete halt.


  • There are two valves on the hydraulic pump to ensure double redundancy. They can be manually activated by pressing the red buttons. Upon pressing the red buttons, the lift sinks. 
  • In the unfortunate event of a power failure, the battery backup will allow the lift to slowly return to the ground floor and open the doors. 

Hydraulic elevators are further divided into 2 types:

– Chained Hydraulic

  • This type of lift supports high-capacity functions.
  • To lift and lower the platform, this hydraulic lift uses a hydraulic jack and chains that lift and lower the platform. Two chains drive the whole system. There are two ends of the cord, one attached to the platform and the other tied to the rails.

– Rope Hydraulic

  • It uses the slack rope detection device. The elevator car/ door operates using a hydraulic jack and cables.
  • The best part about this type of elevator is that It works without drilling a large hole in the ground that would otherwise be necessary for a hydraulic elevator.
  • There are safety springs attached to the steel wire. Even if a steel wire rope breaks, its springs will release and push a bar that engages the brake gears. These will bite into the gears and stop the car.

2. Traction 

Traction lifts are of 2 types:

– Gearless or MRL (Machine Room Less) Elevator 

  • It is the most environmentally friendly drive system. It does not use fossil hydraulic oils. It also has a relatively low energy usage due to the use of a counterweight system. The counterweight mechanism enables the weight to be balanced. Also, half the load the car can carry. Therefore, it uses up to 90% less energy than any other system. 
  • Unlike gearbox elevators, this lift has a wheel connected directly to the cabin and engine, so there is no need for a machine room. That’s why it is also called the MRL elevator. 
  • The linear gearless drive consists of three main components 


It consists of

The Motor Brake, and

Unlike old school motors that are cheaper, linear gearless motors use a highly advanced gearless motor. It means friction will not wear down the gears. Consequently, it doubles the lifespan and reduces energy consumption by half. 

The Overspeed Governor 

The device measures how fast the lift car is traveling. It operates by pulling the brake shoe on the lift car and bring it to an instant standstill if the speed exceeded the normal speed of the lift 


The highest priority for any lift installation is safety. When the lift is in normal operation and arrives at the desired floor, the motor locks in position by a double motor brake. This makes it possible for the lift car to move if the main power fails the battery backup power will use this brake to return the car to the nearest floor and open the doors. 

-Geared Drive Elevator

  • It is most space-friendly. In this lift, an electric motor and wheel reside inside a machine room above the lift shaft.
  • It has a larger engine which makes the maintenance and service more difficult. 
  • It has almost the same weight-bearing capacity as Gearless, but it is behind the competition when it comes to speed per distance.