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SERVICES – Installation – Machine Roomless Elevators

Machine room less elevators (MRLs) are a relatively new addition to the elevator safety code. They have gained in popularity due to the lack of a requirement for a dedicated machine room which translates to more rentable space for building owners. They come in both hydraulic and overhead traction configurations.

In an overhead traction configuration the hoisting machine is placed inside the hoistway at the top and the controller is placed in a “control space” which closely resembles a closet with the elevator controller in it. While a traction MRL does not require a machine room it does require significantly more space vertically inside the hoistway to accommodate the code required overtravel and the appropriate space for the hoisting machine.

As a service oriented elevator service company, RMR does not recommend MRL’s except in certain very limited circumstances.  Our opinion is that the difficulty presented by trying to service a machine where the control system and driving machine are separated from each other is not worth the very limited increase in floor space. Furthermore, if a motor or driving machine fails on a MRL, the repair and replacement process is dramatically more complicated and, as such, the maintenance and repair costs are sure to be more.

In a hydraulic configuration, the hydraulic driving machine and control system are placed in a “machine space” immediately adjacent to the hoistway. Many hydraulic MRLs utilize a counterweighted elevator system in an effort to minimize the size and power requirements for the hydraulic system