Winter Weather Prep
With winter just around the corner, every Chicagoland manager knows the importance of preparing their building for the weather that is soon to come. Without preparation of your elevator’s equipment and machine room, your elevators could experience damage and unscheduled shutdowns. Here’s a quick guide that outlines the necessary steps to keep your passengers moving safely this winter season.
The wind shows no mercy in the Windy City and the surrounding suburbs, and it gets progressively (and aggressively) worse in the winter. It can become so powerful that it can impede proper door operation. Making sure there are no gaps or drafts directly around your elevator, especially when in the lobby, is crucial. The elevator shaft acts like a chimney, so if there’s a strong gust of wind, that air will cause resistance and keep the doors from closing all of the way.
Machine Room Temperature
One of the biggest weather-related challenges for elevators is the fluctuation of temperatures in the machine room. Maintaining consistent temperatures and keeping your floors dry will prevent issues with elevator controls and motors. Constantly changing temperatures can cause a number of problems which may include:
- Condensation build-up leading to electrical malfunction
- Slow or sluggish rides
- Uneven leveling from floor to floor
With proper routine maintenance, you can identify these issues before they become detrimental to your elevator system and its functionality.
Did You Know?
Hydraulic oil temperature should be between 85 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit. If not, you may experience sporadic leveling or system shutdowns. Installing a tank heater is a great way to reduce the risk of low oil temperatures and can easily be done by your elevator technician.
Maintaining consistent temperatures is much easier with climate-controlled cars. However, if yours don’t have that feature, you can keep them parked on climate-controlled floors when the elevators are not in use. They can be programmed to automatically send the car to a desired floor when there are no passengers to be picked up. If your machine room is located in a cold area, adding extra layers of insulation for the tank and hoistway is also something to consider to help better control your climate.
Preventative Maintenance Checklist
During your monthly, quarterly, or semi-annual preventative maintenance contract calls, double check with your technician to ensure your elevators are ready for winter. Here’s a brief checklist to help you prepare.
- Check Your Backup Battery
- Ensure Consistent Temperatures
- Address Drafts
- Look Out for Snow and Ice Build Up
- Lubricate the Rails
If you’re in need of a winter checkup or routine maintenance, call our team today.