How Does a Hydraulic Elevator Differ from a Vacuum Elevator?

Freedom Home ElevatorsBudget and space limitations are the key factors in determining the type of home elevator you will install. Two of the most popular types of home elevators are the traditional hydraulic elevator and the contemporary vacuum, or pneumatic, elevator.

Hydraulic elevators are considered the safest option thanks to fire- and earthquake-proof qualities.

They are equipped with manual lowering with a machine room in the basement. They use a hydraulic piston with aircraft cable to help in the lifting. Hydraulic elevators are extremely quiet and smooth. The maximum travel speed is 40 feet per minute with a lifting capacity of 1,000 pounds.

Vacuum elevators are considered the elevator of the future because of their unique drive system and modern look. They use a pneumatic drive that uses air pressure to lift the cab between floors with a self-supporting shaft.

Hydraulic elevators require a pit and machine room, which increases installation time and cost. Pneumatic elevators cost about as much as a new car and can be attached to a balcony or run through a small hole in the floor. They are self-standing, so they don't require a pit or machine room. The cylindrical shape of the vacuum elevator makes it spacious on the inside with a 360-degree panoramic view as you ascend. Some vacuum elevators are large enough to carry wheelchairs.

A vacuum elevator may be a better option if you have less space, but it would not be hidden like a hydraulic elevator. A pneumatic elevator should not be installed in a small area because it can dominate the room. Pneumatic elevators use less energy than other types, making their monthly usage costs lower.

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Hydraulic elevators are considered to be the most dependable, while pneumatic elevators are quite noisy. But due to the modern design, lack of machine room, and lower cost, they are preferable to hydraulic elevators for many homeowners. Pneumatic elevators also have a futuristic appearance that may have a stronger impact on your home's market value compared with hydraulic elevators and other traditional models.

Check with your elevator dealer for hydraulic and pneumatic options and select the one that accommodates your home design at an affordable price.

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