The ABCs of Elevator Industry Terms

In the elevator industry, there are specific terms used to describe certain parts, components and practices. Some of them you may know, while others you may not. Let’s review some of those industry terms so you can familiarize yourself with them. For a full list, check out our glossary.

Elevator Industry Terms

The ABCs of Elevator Terms

A is for:

Alarm bell. You’ll find thiseither inside or outside the hoistway, connected to a push button in the car’s operating panel. Elevator passengers can use this button to summon aid in emergencies.

B is for:

Brake shoe. This is a part of the brake system, lined with a friction material that can hold the elevator at floor level.  

C is for:

Car counterweight. This is comprised of a set of weights roped directly to the car, equal to 70 percent of the car’s weight.

D is for:

Drive machine. This is the power unit responsible for applying the necessary energy to raise and lower an elevator or related device.

E is for:

Emergency stop switch. This is a manually operated device located in the car that stops the elevator by cutting power and applying the brake.

F is for:

Faceplate. This is the bronze or stainless-steel front cover of an operating fixture or signal, like a push-button or position indicator.

G is for:

Gate. This is a kind of hoistway or car enclosure comprised of wood, metal or mesh strips, usually for use on freight elevators.

H is for:

Hall lantern. This is a signal light mounted in the corridor that indicates when an elevator car is approaching.

I is for:

Independent service. This is when a car is removed from automatic operation and can no longer answer car or landing calls automatically.

L is for:

Leveling. This is the movement of an elevator can toward the landing sill within the leveling zone. The car stops flush with the landing for easy entry and exit.

M is for:

Machine room. This is a room that houses the driving and control parts of an elevator, and may contain the machine, controller, motor-generator, and selector.

N is for:

Non-selective collective automatic operation.This is when the car stops at all floors for which buttons were activated.

O is for:

Overspeed governor switch. This is a part of an escalator machine, which trips a switch when motor speed increases 20 percent over its rated speed.

P is for:

Plunger. This is a part of a hydraulic elevator that pushes the car upwards or restrains its descent, moving within a cylinder through hydraulic pressure.

R is for:

Rated load. This is the load at which the elevator, escalator or dumbwaiter has been designed and installed in order to lift at the desired speed.

S is for:

Sheave. The grooves over which a rope can pass.

T is for:

Transom. This is the panel that closes the hoistway entrance frame, opening directly above the landing door panels.

Contact Mowrey Elevator

Now that you have a taste of the lingo, call us today to discuss your elevator needs!