5 Signs Your Lift Needs Repairs


Don’t Let Lift Problems Derail Your Business

Despite being complex pieces of equipment, passenger lifts are an extremely reliable way to move people between floors of multi-storey buildings. While a well-maintained lift in a commercial or residential environment can expect a low breakdown rate, it’s impossible to eliminate the potential for malfunctions entirely.

Which is why it’s important to be alert to the warning signals that swift attention is required. In this blog, Tower Lifts reveals 5 signs your lift needs repairs, so you can catch problems before they cause costly business downtime and inconvenience.


5 Signs Your Lift Needs Repairs

Let’s take a look at the 5 most common signals that your lift requires urgent attention:

1. Unusual Noises From Your Lift

Think of your lift like a car engine – a smoothly operating one makes minimal noise. Unusual sounds are your lift’s way of signalling trouble. Understanding what those noises mean is the first step to protecting your lift and its passengers.

Here’s more detail on what kind of noises to listen out for:

  • Grinding. This harsh, metallic sound suggests serious wear and tear on bearings or gears. Think of it as your lift’s cry for help before a major component fails.
  • Rattling. Loose parts or debris caught in the workings can cause a rattling noise. It’s like your lift is shaking something loose, and that “something” might be vital to its operation.
  • Screeching. A high-pitched screech is often a sign of brake trouble. This is a major safety red flag, as brakes are crucial for safe and controlled stops.
  • Clanging. This can mean broken parts or damage within the lift mechanism. It’s a clear signal that something isn’t right.

The Importance of Swift Action

Remember, these noises aren’t just a nuisance – they’re warning signs. Ignoring them could lead to:

Sudden breakdowns – Stranding passengers and disrupting your business flow.

Costly repairs – Minor issues left unchecked can grow into major expenses.

Safety hazards – A malfunctioning lift can pose a serious risk to users.

The best way to protect your lift (and its passengers) is a combination of regular maintenance and quick action when problems arise. Contact Tower Lifts if you experience any unusual noises. Our experts will diagnose the issue and provide the necessary repairs to keep your lift running smoothly and safely.


2. A Shaky Lift Demands Expert Attention

A lift is meant to provide a smooth and stable ride. If you start to feel vibrations, jolts, or swaying, it’s not just unsettling – it’s a warning sign that something’s seriously wrong. Don’t ignore that shaky feeling; here’s why you need to act fast.

Understanding the Causes of Instability

Several things can make a lift feel unsteady:

  • Misaligned Guide Rails. The rails your lift car rides on must be perfectly level. Even slight shifts cause shaking.
  • Worn Rollers or Guide Shoes. These components ensure smooth movement along the rails. Wear and tear lead to a bumpy ride.
  • Motor & Drive Issues. Problems with the motor or drive system can cause uneven power delivery, resulting in jerks and vibrations.
  • Structural Concerns. While less common, loose bolts or weakened support structures can affect the lift’s overall stability.

Why It’s Not Just About Comfort

A shaky lift isn’t just a nuisance; it poses significant risks:

Passenger Injury – Sudden shakes or jolts can lead to falls and injuries within the lift cabin.

Increased Wear & Tear – Vibrations put excessive stress on components, leading to premature breakdowns and costly repairs.

Compromised Safety – An unstable lift increases the likelihood of malfunctions that could endanger passengers.

Diagnosing and fixing the root cause of a shaky lift requires specialised expertise. Tower Lifts engineers are trained to identify problems quickly and implement the right solutions. A proactive approach ensures safe, reliable lift operation in the long term.


3. When Your Lift Doesn’t Line Up

Passengers finding there’s a gap or a step between the lift car and the landing floor will be disconcerted. And this misalignment isn’t just inconvenient, it’s both a safety hazard and a sign your lift needs attention.

Why Misalignment is a Problem

Proper alignment is crucial for several reasons:

  • Accessibility. Misalignment creates barriers for passengers with mobility issues, wheelchairs, or prams, increasing the risk of trips and falls.
  • Damage. Constant misalignment puts stress on doors, frames, and lift components, leading to wear and tear that shortens your lift’s lifespan.
  • Safety Compliance. Building codes often have strict requirements for lift alignment to ensure safe operation.

Lift misalignment doesn’t happen out of nowhere. Here are some common causes:

Worn Control Systems – The ‘brains’ of the lift can lose precision over time, affecting its stopping accuracy.

Overloading – When a lift consistently carries more weight than designed for, it can impact levelling.

Hydraulic Issues (for hydraulic lifts) – Leaks or low fluid can cause uneven settling.

Failing Brakes – Worn brakes make it difficult for the lift to stop precisely.

Don’t let misalignment become the norm for your lift. Tower Lifts engineers have the tools and expertise to diagnose the underlying cause and restore your lift’s smooth, level stops. This safeguards both passengers and your investment in the lift.


4. A Slow Lift Requires a Rapid Response

Is your lift dragging its feet? A gradual slowdown might seem like just an annoyance at first, but it’s a tell-tale sign of trouble brewing. Don’t just get frustrated – get proactive to protect your lift and those who use it.

Causes – Beyond the Obvious

Exceeding weight limits or increased usage can slow a lift down. But let’s look deeper at some potentially serious issues:

  • Damaged Door Mechanisms. Sticky hinges or malfunctioning openers create delays at every stop.
  • Electrical Faults. Problems with the control panel or motor signals can affect lift speed and responsiveness.
  • Age and Wear. Even with maintenance, components wear out over time, making the whole system sluggish.

From Annoyance to Danger

A slow lift isn’t just about wasted time. It has serious consequences:

Impatience = Overcrowding -Frustrated passengers may try to cram into the lift, risking overload and a breakdown.

Trapped Passengers – A slow, malfunctioning lift dramatically increases the risk of people being stuck inside.

Increased Downtime – Ignoring the problem leads to bigger breakdowns and longer repair times.

Regular lift maintenance by Tower Lifts engineers helps catch issues early, minimising the severity of slowdowns. When problems do arise, our speedy response gets your lift back up to full speed, ensuring safety and minimising disruption.


5. Take Notice of Error Codes

Modern lifts often have built-in error codes or warning signals designed to alert you to potential problems. Whether it’s a flashing light on the control panel, a strange beeping, or a specific code displayed, don’t dismiss these signs. Ignoring them could lead to a complete breakdown, trapping passengers and causing major disruption to your building.

Contact Tower Lifts right away for a swift diagnosis and solution. Proactive attention to these warnings ensures the safety and longevity of your lift.


Don’t Let Lift Problems Derail Your Business

Ignoring the warning signs of lift trouble leads to costly breakdowns, safety risks, and inconvenience for passenger. Tower Lifts can help. Since 2006, our experienced engineers have provided reliable lift repairs and maintenance across the UK. We work with a wide range of lift models, including legacy systems, ensuring your investment is protected.

As an ISO 9001:2015 Lift Cert and UKAS approved company, we deliver quality workmanship that adheres to the highest safety standards.


Call Tower Lifts today on 01525 601099 to discuss your lift’s needs. Discover how our proactive maintenance and expert repairs can keep your lift – and your business – running smoothly.