As the two most popular and commonly used elevator systems in the industry, hydraulic and traction lifts may have a few similarities, such as their ability to be installed in both residential and commercial buildings; however, it is clear to see that their mechanics operate differently in comparison to one another. Read on as the Elevators Ltd team reveal all and go over some of these differences…

How They Work

Hydraulic elevators rely on electric pumps in order to transmit hydraulic oil into the system; this triggers a piston at the base of the cab which pushes up the elevator. Similarly, the fluid is removed in order to signal to the piston that the cab needs to be lowered. On the other hand, traction elevators rely on steel ropes, sheaves and a counterweight in order to move the cab up and down to the required floors in a building.

Space Requirements

If space is an issue, then it is important to note that hydraulic systems don’t take up as much room because the hoist way isn’t as large. After all, traction elevator systems are much bulkier and require a significant amount of space in order to ensure that the counterweight can operate smoothly. With this said, there are many Machine Room-Less (MRL) alternatives on the market than can reduce the space requirements of a traction elevator significantly.

Speed & Smoothness

Despite being smaller, hydraulic elevators are not as fast as their traction counterparts and the maximum speed that they can achieve is 150 fpm. As a result, these systems need to have a machine room installed at the very top of the building in order to ensure that they run more efficiently. On the other hand, traction elevators are known for their speed and smoothness; this is thanks to their use of a counterweight, which helps balance the cabs weight much more evenly. In fact, this makes them the best choice for high-rise buildings like skyscrapers.

Here at Elevators Ltd, we want our clients to make a well informed and educated decision when it comes to hydraulic and traction elevators. After all, there is no right or wrong, as each system is suited towards properties with specific requirements. If you are having trouble decoding the differences been a hydraulic elevator and a traction elevator, we would be more than happy to help! To find out more information, get in contact with the best lift company around and speak to a member of the Elevators Ltd team today!