How Does a Vacuum Elevator Work?
Pneumatic, or vacuum, elevators are the coolest and most advanced elevator on the market. If you install one in your home, it will be the talk of all your friends and neighbors. A vacuum elevator will carry you from floor to floor without a single cable, pulley, or piston! This self-supporting residential elevator can travel up to 35 feet (or 4 stops), and requires no excavation work. The fact that a hoist way and pit don't have to be built means that the vacuum elevator can be installed much more quickly other home elevators.
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Vacuum elevators work with five 220 vac turbines that dramatically reduce air pressure above the cabin, causing the elevator to ascend. To descend gently, a control valve regulates the inflow of air above the cabin relative to cabin speed. The cabin itself never gains or loses pressure.
There are three main parts to the vacuum elevator:
- The exterior cylinder is a transparent, self-supporting tube built around an aluminum structure with a roof made of steel. Suction valves and inlets ensure tight closures.
- The elevator car runs inside the cylinder on rails and columns with walls made from transparent polycarbonate panels. The car is equipped with an anchoring system that activates on reaching a floor, provides precise, smooth stops, and locks the car mechanically.
- The suction assembly is on the top of the cylinder and includes a control cabinet in a metal box that holds the controller board and other electric devices.
Another great benefit to the vacuum elevator is low maintenance relative to the conventional residential elevator. There are no rails to grease, no ropes to check, no fluid level to top off, and no controller panel to check. The system is based upon air. Granted, air brings lots of dust and dirt. As a result, filters and turbines, and even the cab, should be cleaned regularly. Polycarbonate is an extremely soft plastic which scratches easily. So the biggest maintenance issue with the vacuum elevator is cleanliness.
Look online for vacuum elevators that offer the most contemporary design, require minimal installation, and can fit easily into most homes.