What is the ‘Average’ Call Out Amount Expected for Lifts?
For several years we have kept our baseline set to the supposed ‘industry standard’ for lift call outs. This indicates the typical range of breakdowns that might be expected from a lift being used regularly over the course of 12 months – with it, you can consider your own lift’s amount of call outs over the last year and work out if it is having more problems than expected.
The industry average is ‘at least four call outs per year’ per lift, indicating that 4 is generally the lower end of the scale for call out quantity.
We wanted to consider the numbers ourselves to find out how different lift type can affect their call out rate; who uses the lift and how often is a major factor that should be taken into account. You would never assume that a large lift for 1000kg loads would have the same wear and tear as a 4-person passenger lift, so we wanted to find out if this changed results.
How Many Call Outs Do Passenger Lifts Get?
Firstly, let’s look at passenger lifts.
These lifts run far less risk of internal damage due to heavy goods or being overloaded – it is made to be a comfortable fit for a set number of passengers and usually one can tell if they won’t fit after others enter ahead of them. With goods lifts, a common problem is the user overestimating what their lift is capable of, or underestimating the load they are putting in it. This leads to an over-stocked lift that might fail to move, stop mid-journey or risk damage from the goods inside.
We broke down the ‘out of service’ calls we received for this lift type in the last 12 months, i.e. the calls for lifts that were broken down and weren’t moving.
Overall, we found that passenger lifts receive 2-3 call outs per year.
Analysing the categories, we found the following:
- 7% of call outs were caused by misuse. This includes damaging buttons inside the lift or on the landings, pushing/pulling the doors while in motion, or vandalising the lift.
- 8% of call outs were due to trap-ins. Over half of these call outs had the user released from the lift before an engineer arrived on site. Being trapped inside a lift is cause for a lot of anxiety in different users, so the low volume of trap-ins and their ease of resolution will hopefully put their minds at rest!
- 23% of call outs were caused by car gate issues – car gates are the doors that keep you inside the lift during travel, as opposed to the landing doors that are at every landing. The issues are usually caused by minor faults in the car gate’s locks that can be rectified by replacing or repairing them; this can be caused by general wear and tear or interfering with the lift during travel.
- Most issues that interfere with the lift come under the ‘Other’ category, such as wiring difficulty, electricity problems, or minor part defects. This occurred in 31% of the call outs, meaning that a lot of issues are caused by small faults in equipment that are generally rectified during the call out.
Average Call Out Rates for Goods Lifts
Simply put, goods lifts go through an awful lot more mistreatment than passenger lifts.
The goods loaded into these lifts tend to be too large for a person to handle without assistance, so if anything goes wrong with them inside the lift car it can be almost expected that damage will be dealt. Goods are often slammed into the lift because of their weight, poorly secured, overloaded and forced in and out.
Effects from this treatment are clear in statistics:
goods lifts receive 6-7 call outs per year on average.
Dragging huge weight into and out of the lift is already hard work on the lift’s structure, but poor use leads to repeated call outs and higher chances of damage.
In breaking down the call outs by category;
- 9% of all call outs found that the lift was running on arrival, despite having been called in as being out of service. This is usually tied into the next statistic;
- 15% of calls were due to misuse. Goods lifts are frequently used by untrained staff members that may overestimate what the lift is capable of, meaning that the lift gets overloaded with goods that it cannot safely travel with, or the lift is treated too harshly and damaged as a result. Users often report a lift as out of service, however, they simply haven’t closed the doors properly or have slammed the doors together too aggressively. This not only leads to a chargeable call out, it can also damage the lift and require future repairs.
- Only 1% of call outs required a return visit after the first call out in order to ascertain what the issue was.
- Car gate issues caused 21% of the call outs in the last 12 months. Often due to misuse, the car gates are put through a huge toll every day as users mistreat them or allow the stock in the lift to lean up against them during travel. The car gates aren’t meant to withstand repeated damage and can become misaligned, bent and/or damaged very easily if being misused. Faults can be as small as the gate lock no longer functioning correctly – this is an easy fix for engineers – to the gate being beyond repair and requiring full replacement. Make sure anyone that uses your goods lifts are aware of the risks of slamming the doors, moving them when the lift in travelling, and not securing goods in the car properly.
- Other issues accounted for 22% of call outs, which refers to minor items in the motor room or in the lift, for example. As with passenger lifts, these problems are often easily rectified.
Overall, the average amount of call outs ranges between 4-5 each year as indicated by the industry standard. Depending on the type of lift you own, the issues that can occur vary depending on its purpose which affects the average greatly. Small goods lifts and passenger lifts receive less toil than large goods lift, so they should require less call outs.