Best Home Elevators ranked for the new year.
In 2021, a continued growing trend for homeowners will be installing residential elevators as a necessity to maintain their standard of living. Homeowners will turn to residential elevators in 2021 to gain additional accessibility and mobility inside their homes. The value and benefits associated with “Aging in Place” are significant, both for your health and lifestyle. This guide will help educate you on the various home elevator solutions to see which can best serve your project and needs.
Benefits of a Home Elevator
According to analysis provided by CDC, 13.7% of American adults have struggles with mobility with 16.9% of Americans aged 65 and older falling within that category. Not only for the elderly, homeowners recuperating from a serious injury, those with mobility issues or looking to have loved ones such as parents moving into their homes see home elevators as a safe and effective solution to gaining additional accessibility between floors.
Unlike stair lifts which can be unattractive and unpractical, home elevators are elegant, long-term solutions that add value. Depending on the technology and style of residential elevator purchased, home elevators can also be an aesthetic addition to your residence that enhance the interior design of your home. In short, homeowners who purchase a home elevator have not only elevated their standard of living but made a calculated investment toward the value of their home.
As an investment, installing a home elevator increases the value of your property and if you’re looking to sell your residence in the future, can increase the interest of prospective buyers in the housing market. As a result, installing a residential elevator is the most engaging choice for both current and future homeowners to ensure climbing the stairs is no longer a taxing experience.
With the vast benefits of installing a residential elevator in your residence, it can be difficult for homeowners to decide which elevator solution is right for their project and needs. This guide will help educate you on the various home elevator solutions to see which can best serve your project and needs.
Home Elevator Solutions
With various lifts solutions available for residences, it is important for homeowners to understand the mechanics and technology of each solution they are looking to purchase to see which option is best for their project and needs.
Vacuum Elevators – Innovative home elevator solution that is also environmentally friendly and easy to install. Vacuum Elevators operate by using turbines to generate lift with gravity solely used for descent making them the only Air-Driven Elevator in the world. The do not require a pre-construction shaft, pit or machine room offering more flexibility with where the elevator can be installed inside the home. These elevators have minimal maintenance requirements as no harmful oils, gases or lubricants are required for operation. Smaller models are available which are space-saving solutions for any home.
Hydraulic Elevators – Requiring a fully enclosed hoist way on each level as well as a pit on the ground level, this elevator solution operates by a motor pushing oil into hydraulic piston to raise and lower the cab. Requiring a separate machine room to operate, hydraulic elevators have more construction requirements that other elevator solutions while taking up more space inside your home. In addition, annual maintenance is required due to the use of oils which can add future service costs to the elevator. As a result, installing a hydraulic elevators may require more modifications to the home and require more maintenance over time.
Winding Drum Elevators – By winding a cable on a drum using an electric motor, winding drum elevators require a hoistway, pit and machine-room to operate. With the drive often located in a separate machine room, there are various configurations available for the placement of the moto assembly to allow ease of maintenance and service in the future. If a hoistway is unavailable, tracks may be installed on the sides of the elevator to allow operation. All these items increase the pre-construction and space required to accommodate this elevator solution.
Chain Drive Counterweight Elevators – This elevator solution has a system of gears that use a chain, similar to an enlarged bike chain, to torque from the motor. Using a counterweight system, this elevator requires a fully encloses shaft and pit to operate taking up more space in the home. Compared to cables, chains have a maintenance advantage as they don’t stretch easily.
Traction Elevators – Requiring a hoist way and pit for operation, this elevator often to uses a pulley, counterweight or chain system that roll over a sheave to transport the passenger between floors. Often not positioned above the elevator cabin, the motor and operational components are located within the engine room. Most common elevator solution used in commercial buildings, annual servicing is required to ensure correct operation.
Machine Room-Less Elevators (MRL) – For this elevator system, the controller and drive will be installed in the hoist way eliminating the need for a separate machine room. This solution is available for some traditional elevators for projects with limited space as a separate machine room is not required. Often available in counterweight electric chain drive and cable drive systems, servicing this elevator requires entry into the elevator shaft which can be time consuming. A pit is still required which adds additional construction requirements.
Shaftless Lift – Not to be confused with a “Home Elevator”, Shaftless Lifts are through-floor solutions that are limited to two floors. Similar to a medical device, these “lifts” should not be mistaken for an “elevator” as elevators have stricture safety requirements to be fully certified by ASME and governing bodies worldwide. Lifts do not require a fully enclose cabin or shaft which could prove to be a safety concern. In addition, lifts are constant pressure systems unlike single push activated “elevators” which means that a button must be constantly held for the elevator to operate. This makes shaftless lifts travel much slower than a fully certified elevator.
Stairway Chair Lifts – Stair Lifts allow users to sit in a seat that takes them up the stairs using a railing as a track. With the seat secured to the track, a motorized gear is used for operation. Traveling much slower than a home elevator with the tracks mounted on the wall, stair lifts are not visually appealing and are often removed whenever a homeowner decides to finally sell their residence. As a result, Stair Lifts are not the best long term investments for a home.
Dumbwaiters – a dumbwaiter is a small freight elevator or lift intended to carry food and/or clothing between floors. Dumbwaiters are not large enough or certified to transport passengers as they are much smaller in size than a certified elevator.
Vertical Platform Lift – Also referred to as a VPL, Vertical Platform Lifts are mobility solutions that transport wheelchairs and other mobility devices such as canes or walkers between floors. A raised platform is used to transport the passenger up or down to their designated floor and are often installed if there isn’t sufficient space for a ramp. But note, a 3” inch pit or a entry ramp will be required for operation. In addition, platform lifts may not be permitted for new construction projects and are commonly installed as an accessibility solution for a remodel. Often providing access to a raised porch or deck, VPL’s are able to be installed inside or outside the home. These wheelchair lifts are mechanical systems that require annual maintenance so budgeting in yearly safety check and maintenance will be require.
Best Home Elevator: Pneumatic Vacuum Elevators
As the world’s only air-driven home elevators, Vacuum Elevators are the most innovative residential elevators on the market and have revolutionized the way people and goods are transported vertically for residential, marine and stage applications. Not requiring a pre-construction shaft, pit or machine room, these self-supporting elevators simply rest on the existing ground floor which allow them to be installed virtually anywhere for both retro-fit and new construction projects. As a plug & play system, these panoramic residential elevator can travel up to 5 stops or 50 feet in total rise while offering a panoramic view as they travel smoothly from floor-to-floor within their home. Using innovative vacuum technology to generate lift, these revolutionary elevators offer an elegant design while being powered by the most abundant resource in the world… AIR!
With three sizes to choose from, ranging from a single passenger to a three passenger wheelchair accessible model, there is a Vacuum Elevator to meet any homeowners needs. The PVE30 and PVE37 home elevator models are both space saving solutions as they are only 30” inches and 37” inches in total exterior diameter allowing more flexibility with where they can be installed inside the home. Due to it’s unique design, these eco-friendly elevators have an aesthetic appeal sure to capture peoples attention and imagination. As an environmentally friendly lift, minimal maintenance is required as no harmful oils, gases or lubricants are used for operation.
Made in USA and fully certified in all 50 states, Vacuum Elevators are manufactured at the PVE Factory headquarters in Miami, FL, USA and have been installed in over 90+ countries globally. All home elevators are pre-assembled and safety tested at the PVE factory headquarters ensuring the highest quality & safety standards. With 18+ years on the market, Vacuum Elevators are the most innovative home elevators worldwide and are ideal elevator solutions for any retro-fit or new construction project.