Elevator Safety

Is Your Home Elevator Safe?

Why are we asking this question?
Because there is a strong possibility that a safety concern may exist in your home regarding an existing home elevator. The National Elevator Code has changed and California will also soon change.
Is there a safety concern?
Yes, an advisement was issued on Aug 6, 2019 by the US Consumer Products Safety Commission. It deals with the spacing between gate and landing doors on home elevators.
What did the announcement say?
Download and read the actual notice.
What’s the concern?
It’s based around what is known as the 3”x5 Rule which has determined the space allowed between your entry doors and the gate on the car for decades. It has now been decided that this distance may be too large and can be dangerous for children. This rule is still in effect as of 2020 in California, but not for much longer. The new rule will be ¾” x 4”Rule. Not following these rules could lead to the possibility of a serious accident.
elevator safety guidelinesIf you are building a new home, be sure your doors meet this new distance code of the ¾” x 4” Rule.
Is there a code or law about this?
Home elevators are governed by a national code and then adopted by your local state. This entity (ASME) has already changed the 3”x5” Rule into the ¾”x4” Rule.
Do you have a home elevator already?
If the answer is yes, you should contact a home elevator professional to assess your situation and offer a remedy to decrease the space gap between doors in your home. This is important!
What should I do?
If you are building a new home, be sure your doors meet this new distance code of the ¾” x 4” Rule. See attached drawing.
elevator safety measurementsThe space between your entry doors and the gate on the car can be dangerous for children.
If you have an existing elevator or are considering buying a home with an existing elevator in it, you need to consult a home elevator professional to make an evaluation for your own safety.
What are my options for an existing elevator?
Your home needs to be surveyed by a professional who can make those recommendations. The major options are:
  • Door Build-Outs – These attach to the back of your door and fill the space, reducing the void to acceptable dimensions. This will need sizing and dimension verification.
  • Move Landing Doors – This would entail having a door contractor move your existing doors almost flush to the landing sill edge.
What’s the bottom line of this notice?
That you need to be cautious and take this seriously. An elevator needs to be safe in all situations and evaluated. Call for guidance. Do not let this go unaddressed.
elevator doorDoor Build-Out Example

Need help evaluating the safety of your home elevator?