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Freight Elevators


Freight elevators usually travel at lower speeds than passenger elevators, but they are built to carry heavier loads and finished to withstand tougher working conditions. We recommend and offer different freight elevator styles based on your desired application and specific requirements. As always, our Team is experienced in customizing standard designs to fit any application.

Typical factors to consider when choosing a freight elevator

  • Size and type of load
  • Vertical travel distance
  • Method of loading (see Freight Classifications)


Freight Elevator Planning Guide
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Hydraulic Elevators

Commonly found throughout the country, hydraulic elevators operate with a pump moving liquid (oil based or vegetable based) under pressure into a cylinder. The cylinder contains a plunger that moves the elevator as liquid is pumped into or released from the cylinder through a valve.

Engineering Characteristics

  • Low to medium rise buildings (typically less than 60’ of travel)
  • Low to medium speed (200 ft./min. or less)
  • Loading capacity is typically higher than a passenger elevator
  • Optimal for industrial environments

Hydraulic Elevator Classifications

  • Holed: Hydraulic cylinders placed in a drilled hole.
  • Hole-less: The cylinder stands within the hoist way and does not require a drilled hole. This class is typically limited to under 40’ of travel.

Traction Elevators

A geared traction elevator is designed so that power from a motor is transmitted to a drive sheave through a reduction gear. Geared traction elevators designed for freight are available with power or manually operated vertical or horizontal opening, doors.

  • Medium to high rise buildings (typically more than 60’ of travel)
  • Medium to high speed (200 ft./min. or more)
  • Loading capacity is typically higher than a passenger elevator
  • Optimal for industrial environments

Machine Room-Less Elevators

As owners increasingly demand energy savings and seek U.S. Green Building Council LEED® certifications, architects, consultants and general contractors have discovered the benefits MRL’s provide to building design. The machine-room-less elevator is the result of technological advancements that often allow a significant reduction in the size of the electric motors used with traction equipment. The need for locating the machine room over the hoist way is eliminated because newly designed, smaller permanent magnet motors (PMM) allow Architects to design the hoist way with the machine as an integral component.

Not only does the MRL design lead to reduced use of both oil and energy for starting and running the elevator—plus the avoidance of potential ground contamination—it also permits more efficient and safe installation techniques and use of valuable interior space.

We are committed to providing elevator products and services that decrease environmental impact and promote sustainability – we stay true to our commitment by offering the MRL elevator option.

Always on the cutting edge of design and technology, we have installed MRLs throughout New England. Our experience with the MRL allows us to provide you with premium design consultation. Contact our Team today to discover how we can help you integrate an MRL into your next building project.

Engineering characteristics:

  • Medium to high rise (50’-300’ travel)
  • Medium to high speed (200-500 fpm)
  • Optimal for nearly any application: offers superior ride quality and reliable operation
  • Offers significant space and cost saving advantages

Space Saving Benefits:

  • No penthouse required above the roof level.
  • Utilizes a smaller more efficient machine to power the car.
  • Depending on the application, an MRL can reduce overhead mechanical structural support.
  • Where code permits, need for external machine room is limited to a small controller room.

Cost Saving Benefits:

  • Equipment is designed for a long life cycle.
  • Operation costs may be less than traditional designs.
  • Easy installation and maintenance.
  • Reliability achieved through a completely integrated system.

Freight Cab and Door Equipment

Safety and Reinforcement features:

  • 14-gauge steel panels that reach the full car height.
  • Solid metal 14-gauge steel top with car top access panel.
  • Vertical counter-balanced car gates of 10-welded wire mesh reinforced with bar stock.
  • Weight boxes of 11-gauge sheet steel with guides and removable weight access panel.
  • Non-skid steel platform.

We offer the following options for freight applications:

  • Vandal resistant fixtures for added resistance to wear and tear
  • Vertical, manual bi-parting doors or power doors
  • Wireless controllers: The new Peelle wireless door controller uses wireless technology to keep all landing doors and car doors in constant communication, ensuring a reliable, true operation.

Peelle New Product Brochure


Freight Classifications

Class A: General Freight Loading.

Where the load is distributed, the weight of any single piece is not more than 1/4 the capacity of the elevator and the load is handled on and off the car platform manually or by means of hand trucks.

Class B: Motor Vehicle Loading.

The freight elevator is used solely to carry automobile trucks or passenger automobiles up to the rated capacity of the elevator.

Class C1: Industrial Truck Loading.

A four-wheeled vehicle may be used to load and unload the elevator. The combined weight of the vehicle and the load cannot exceed the rated capacity and may be rolled onto the platform as a single unit.

Class C2: Industrial Truck Loading.

During loading and unloading, max load on the platform may be up to 150% of the rated capacity. This enables the use of a forklift to load a car with freight weighing up to the rated capacity.


Industry Segments

Freight elevators are designed to move materials within a building. We recommend and offer different freight elevator styles based on your desired application and specific requirements. As always, our Team is experienced in customizing standard designs to fit any application.

  • Office
  • Hotel
  • Hospital
  • School
  • University
  • Retail
  • Municipal
  • Residential
  • Automobile Dealership
  • Warehouse
  • Parking Garage
Freight Elevator Resources
Our goal is to provide your facility with the most economical, efficient freight elevator operation possible.
  • Freight Elevator Size
    Looking for a Standard or Custom Elevator Size? We can help!
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  • Freight Elevator Dimensions
    Get Your Calculations Right the First Time.
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