How Do Elevators Work? An Informative Guide.


Did you know that it’s been over 164 years since the first elevator was installed in the Crystal Palace in New York City? And since then, elevator technology has dramatically changed, making them far safer and reliable than their predecessor.

But, have you ever asked yourself: how do elevators work? If so, you’re in luck! In today’s post, we’ll cover the basic mechanical structure of an elevator and how those pieces of machinery help you get to your destination.

Metal Car

The metal car is the first thing you see whenever you come up to an elevator as it’s the box you step into. Two guide rails are needed to move the metal car- one guides the car, and the other is the counterweight. These guide rails also hold the metal car safely in place when it stops on a floor.

There were no lock mechanisms on the metal car doors in the past, which was one of many elevator problems. Fortunately, modern elevator cars have automated locking systems that prevent the doors from opening while in movement. Elevator maintenance management companies ensure these locks are in working order every month, and if something were to happen to the locks, they’d carry out the necessary elevator repairs.

Pulley System

As you already may know, Archimedes created the pulley system to lift heavy objects off the ground by using a rope and wheel. In the early days of elevators, a person or animal would pull the metal cars with a thick rope, but as you can expect, that led to unfortunate accidents. Nowadays, elevators still use the pulley system but use mechanical pieces to pull the metal cars.

Additionally, the rope used in the pulley system is made out of a mix of metallic alloys, which can lift extremely heavy objects. Most passenger elevators only have two to three metallic ropes, but some industrial elevators have more than ten. As you can imagine, these mechanisms make replacing an elevator a lot more difficult as there are many moving pieces within the pulley system.

Brake System

Another important mechanism a modern elevator has is the brake system. On one side, the brake system is the mechanical element that makes the metal car stop at the floor you pressed. But, on the other side, the brake system can stop the metal car if it starts to descend uncontrollably and avoid crashing into the ground.

As you can see, the brake system makes using an elevator safe which is why elevator installation companies thoroughly check that the brake system is in tip-top shape.

Now You Know How Do Elevators Work

Hopefully, we answered the question: how do elevators work? Of course, there are other mechanical pieces that make up an elevator, but the ones mentioned previously are the most important to know about. So, the next time you get on an elevator, try to see how much you remember from this post.

Did you find this article about elevators informative? If so, be sure to check out our other posts since we have plenty of other informative topics!

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