How to Avoid Expensive Maintenance Calls

5 Things to Check Before Seeking Professional Assistance

Like all technology, lifts can sometimes malfunction or stop working unexpectedly. Many people take these events as a reason to call an expensive maintenance team right away, but there are steps that can be taken before this. To avoid spending any unnecessary time or money, we have made a checklist for when you’re unsure. 

Please note: if there is a clear and obvious danger, please call a professional right away. This checklist is for common, easily fixed issues. 

1. Debris Obstructing the Door Tracks

The best way to prevent obstacles in the door tracks is to vacuum the elevator car and its entrance on each floor. Even then, however, objects like small coins or a floor mat that has been shifted can get stuck. This can lead to the doors being unable to close, trip out door protection timers or even burn out door motors. That’s why it’s important to always check for dirt and debris before you decide to spend money on a professional call out .

If all obstructions have been removed, most elevators can be reset by either pressing the door close button or by turning the elevator onto independent service, then back to normal operation.

2. Key Switches 

There is a wide variety of key switches used in the operation of a lift. These are mostly there to stop the lift for security reasons or so it can be worked on safely. If you find that your lift isn’t working as it should be, the first thing to check for is whether you are using the right key or if the lift is on any kind of timer. For example, if it’s late at night then the lift might just be on an automatic shut-down.

If the elevator isn’t working as you would expect, check the position of the key switches. Often, the problem is that the keys aren’t in the correct position. Some keys, such as those for firefighters, require resetting after use.

3. Elevator Phone Not Working

If the phone in your lift isn’t working properly, it’s important to double check that there haven’t been any recent changes to the building’s phone lines. This includes checking if any phone lines have been disconnected. As well as this, it’s a good idea to check that the phone line is live and has a dial tone before entering the lift room.

4. Items Repeatedly Colliding With the Lift Doors

A maintenance team will inevitably need to be called if any big objects such as carts or trolleys regularly collide into the doors. Repeated bangs can knock the rollers and guides out of alignment. It can also damage or misalign the door reversal protection equipment.

To prevent this from happening, use either a key switch to keep the door from closing or get another person to hold the doors open whilst moving large objects in and out of the lift. 

5. Power Issues

Power failures, brownouts and low or missing voltage can cause your elevator to shut down by blowing fuses or causing lift protection measures to trip. If any of these things happen, an electrician or engineer can check the lift main disconnect switch. There is usually a separate, smaller disconnect switch for the lift car overhead lights.

If everything else is normal and has been checked by an electrician, it is then necessary to call a maintenance team.


Any potential problems with your lift should always be double checked. It’s important to note that lifts can sometimes take a few minutes to return to normal when they attempt to recover from non-critical faults or events. 
If your lift still isn’t functioning properly after performing all these checks, it’s very important to then call a maintenance team and get professionals to handle any mechanical issues you have.
To learn more about our lift maintenance packages and service offerings, please visit the Premier Ireland Lift Maintenance page.