Triad Lifts, LLC

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Elevators 101:
Proprietary vs Non-Proprietary
Elevator Equipment

What Is Proprietary Elevator Equipment?

As Philadelphia’s local independent elevator company, we want to help educate our customers about the difference between proprietary elevator equipment and non-proprietary elevator equipment. In order to do that first we will need to define what proprietary means, especially when it comes to elevators. 

Proprietary refers to equipment that is owned and serviced by a particular company. Many of the larger elevator companies design and maintain their own elevator models. For example companies such as Otis, Kone, and Schindler consider their elevator designs and equipment proprietary – since they possess key information related to its components and construction, as well as maintenance.

Proprietary elevator equipment can be advantageous in certain scenarios, such as OEM’s (Original Equipment Manufacturer) can offer and install their equipment at a discounted rate. However, the drawback is that it will lock you and your elevator into their system until it is replaced.

Thyssen Krupp TAC 32 proprietary elevator controller

Non-Proprietary Elevator Equipment

The elevator industry started changing in the early 80’s. “Solid state” silicon devices helped introduce transistors which began to replace the existing legacy electro-mechanical relay systems. This new technology was adopted by the elevator industry and with that came an increase of new equipment that required special electronic service tools. These specific tools are required for the maintenance, troubleshooting, and configuring of system operations. With this new technology and it requiring specific tools, building owners were locked into using the original manufacturer for maintenance and repair.

The introduction of new “solid state” technology and practices in the elevator industry forced a shift in consumer demand. This is when and where Motion Control Engineering was founded and they stepped up to pioneer third-party “Universally Maintainable” control systems. 

Thanks to the new technology of non-proprietary equipment including its onboard diagnostics, it only made sense for building owners to embrace this new generation of elevator equipment along with elevator consultants. Because non-proprietary equipment became so popular, it was common to see specifications for equipment that said “Serviceable and Maintainable by any qualified elevator maintenance provider capable of maintaining apparatus of similar design and complexity.”

Why Choose Non-Proprietary Elevator Equipment?

There are many benefits of choosing non-proprietary elevator equipment. Non-proprietary elevator equipment has diagnostics built into the system, which removes the requirement of needing a special tool. That grants building owners the freedom to select a local elevator company for repairs and maintenance based off customer satisfaction and reputation instead of  being locked to a specific company because they have the required service tool. Companies who manufacture non-proprietary elevator equipment offer high quality technical training, which results in service technicians who are qualified and experienced for repairs, installation, and maintenance of these systems. Additionally, because non-proprietary elevator equipment is relatively open, spare parts, replacement manuals, and technical drawing are aways available. 

As MCE states, “It is the Commitment, Not the Equipment that differentiates Non-Proprietary from Proprietary” here at Triad Lifts we maintain that ethos. 

We only install quality non-proprietary elevator equipment from some of the industry’s most recognized suppliers. We’ve also carefully assembled our team specifically hiring individuals with vast elevator industry experience and who share in our passion for delivering unrivaled customer service. Our goal is to satisfy your vertical transportation needs while exceeding your expectations.

We are Affiliated with Philadelphia's Local 5 Elevator Constructors Union.