A Beginners Guide to Lift Maintenance

The importance of lift maintenance can easily be overlooked, however when managed properly it can improve the longevity of the lift, making it a cost effective way of ensuring your lift maintains its efficiency, reliability and safety.

Here are some of our most frequently asked questions….

Do we have an obligation to have our lift maintained?

The short answer is yes, however as with many areas of legislation it is not cut and dried when it comes to potential legal liability. Where a lift is installed in domestic premises two pieces of legislation, PUWER (The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations) and LOLER (The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations) come in to effect. This is because the lift is deemed to be an item of work equipment and that places a legal obligation on The Lift Owner to take all necessary steps to ensure the lift is safe for the use of its employees and the public.

Strict application of PUWER and LOLER implies that private lift owners (and lifts primarily for use by the public) have no responsibility for their maintenance, as they are not considered to be work equipment. However, owners of lifts still have a duty of care to persons not in their employment under The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations. For example, where Residents Management Associations or Agents employ contractors, such as lift companies, cleaners of common areas etc to work in residential buildings, the premises becomes an area of work and lift owners have a duty of care to ensure their lift is maintained and meets relevant safety standards.

How often should our lift be maintained?

There is no one right answer to this. The frequency of service visits depends on the number of lifts you have, the number of floors served and the amount of use they are subjected to. Your lift provider should be able to advise you on the necessary maintenance profile. It is however important to consider that lift servicing is about improving the longevity of your lift and having your lift regularly serviced is likely to minimise your running costs in the medium to long term.

What will a service visit involve?

During a service visit an engineer will check the safety features on a lift, in addition to cleaning, lubricating and adjusting all components for optimum performance. An engineer will record any work carried out and also make recommendations for any repairs or works of improvement that are not covered in the service visit. The customer should always sign and check the service report on each visit.

What happens if someone is trapped within the lift when it breaks down?

Any persons trapped within a lift when it breaks down should be able to contact someone on the outside via an emergency telephone in the lift car. All credible lift service providers should deal with any trapped passengers as a priority and should offer a 24/7 365 day emergency call out service.

All new lifts installed since 1997 are legally required to comply with the European Lift Directive, including the provision of a lift communication system. For existing lifts the European Standard EN81-80 was introduced in 2003 and covered a 74 point list of recommendations for making old lifts safer. This includes the provision of a lift communication system, as is reasonably practical (which in almost all cases it is)

Should I be charged for breakdowns or repairs?

This ultimately depends on the type of contract you have with your lift provider. Most lift companies offer a choice of contracts depending on the type of service package you are looking for. This can range from basic, where everything other than service visits are chargeable to fully comprehensive, which includes breakdowns and repairs, as well as the cost of replacement parts and labour.

It is important to be aware of the terms of your contract and understand exactly what is or isn’t included. Even fully comprehensive contracts may have certain major parts or components written out in order to reduce the premium.       

ILS Lift Group

Telephone: 01707 649609

Fax: 01707 660553

Email: enquiries@ils-crown.co.uk


ILS Lift Group Unit 7, TheSummitCentre, Cranbourne Industrial Estate, Potters Bar, Herts. EN6 3QW

The ILS Lift Group comprises Industrial Lift Services and Crown Elevators

How can the ILS Lift Group help me?


We have been installing, modernising, repairing and maintaining lifts for 44 years and our extensive experience means that you do not have to use the original manufacturer for maintenance and repairs. We also have a considerable amount of experience of working with privately managed flats and apartments, with a number of existing contracts in London and the home counties. We understand your needs and believe we can offer a more competitive, efficient and personal service. A full range of our client testimonials can be found on our website.


We offer flexibility with our choice of three maintenance contracts; basic, premium and comprehensive. Our staff have the expert knowledge to advise you on the type of contract that best suites your needs. Emergency call outs are prioritised and most are undertaken within 3 hours. We also provide a genuine 24/7 365 days service.

Cost Effective

Our early diagnosis of potential safety/reliability issues provides cost effective solutions to improve the life of your lift. On commencement of any maintenance contract we provide a FREE 74 point check to British Standard EN 81-70, which means that you can feel confident in the knowledge that your lift is safe and complies with current legislation.

Easy to deal with

You are allocated a dedicated service manager who provides a single point of contact. This means none of the frustration of dealing with automated answering services or trying to track down relevant contacts, which you may find with our larger competitors. You’ll get straight through to someone who will deal with your enquiry or problem.