Elevator Contracts – The Ups and Downs

Increasingly, the strata world has significant mechanical plant to look after, from HVAC and generators to car stackers and Elevators.

When it comes to Elevators here are a few things you need to know!

The basic requirements for your Elevators

  • Legal requirement for annual inspection and testing for safety Compliance
  • Continued phone and light operation under power loss critical for users
  • Active phone line available (check if you have contingency from NBN changeover i.e., GSM unit installed)

What is an Elevator Maintenance Contract?

There are three general types of lift contract, though the names for these can vary from company to company:

  • Basic (maintenance only, callouts and parts chargeable)
  • Comprehensive (has some exclusions of major components such as motor fusion and drive units)
  • Full Comprehensive (all-inclusive barring interference, vandalism etc.)

Basic contracts can be a useful tool to manage cost when an asset is ‘Low Risk’ i.e., newly installed, minimal use units such as DDA platforms. They can also be used for ‘High Risk’ assets to ensure the units are being adequately maintained, but where the contractor is not willing accept the risk and associated costs of parts failure and break downs.


  • Low monthly cost
  • $$ saved can go towards a ‘sinking fund’ or other projects & building costs


  • Unforeseen costs if assets fail (both labour and material cost)

Comprehensive contracts are a good option for reliable or commercially supported units and can be a good option to provide wholesale labour coverage for callouts and general repairs. In most cases, only the big-ticket items which tend to have a much longer lifespan are excluded within these contracts.


  • Medium monthly cost
  • Relative peace of mind for day-to-day occurrences


  • Unforeseen costs on the costliest components

Full Comprehensive contracts are the most inclusive option but as with most things, there is a premium that comes with it. Consider a full comprehensive contract as an ‘all in one’ offering whereby servicing, 24/7 assistance and extended warranty are all included.


  • Almost complete peace of mind
  • Almost no additional costs


  • Higher monthly cost
  • Value is recognised only when multiple repairs or a major repair is required

Aside from the three general contract types noted above, it is always important to consider any exclusions that may be written into sub clauses or annexures.

Whilst they can be fair and reasonable (example: Upon our site inspection, we noted the ropes need replacing, and therefore, are excluded in our offer), they can also be vague, and you should seek clarification if you don’t have a good base knowledge of your assets and its’ intended lifecycle.

The term ‘obsolete’ or ‘obsolescence’ can often be used throughout contractors’ offers, yet these should be grouped together and quantified into a schedule of equipment that is deemed ‘obsolete’ or ‘obsolescence’, for the sake of clarity – this will provide the owner of the equipment further protection from these terms being used further down the line.

We hope this article is ‘uplifting’ and useful, and we look forward to assisting you in the future!

Mark Mcleod
Service Manager

P +61 3 9682 5300 | F +61 3 9682 7822 | mark.mcleod@tkelevator.com
TK ELEVATOR AUSTRALIA | https://www.tkelevator.com/global-en/
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