Good reasons for repairing instead of replacement
Which service company does not know this? A defective component is, in most cases, replaced by a new one and the old ends up in the trash! For most people this is apparently the easiest and fastest way to put elevators back in service.
There are, however, realistic alternatives to this approach, namely the repair and refurbishment of electronic elevator components. We would like to introduce a company that deals with this subject and is focused on maintaining the original electronic part of the elevator. The company is FLP and it is headquartered in Fellbach (near Stuttgart in Germany). FLP specialize in the repair and refurbishment of electronic parts and drives for elevators.
By working with different partners throughout Europe and having a very close partnership with a local german logistics service, the company can operate across Germany and even offer on-site support within short timeframes. Drives and electronics such as printed circuit boards, door control cards from well known manufacturers such as Otis, Kone, Schindler, ThyssenKrupp and other popular manufacturers.
The drive is the most complex component of a lift. It converts the on-site mains voltage of 400V into a variable frequency-controlled voltage. Through that, the speed of the elevator can be controlled and smooth starting and stopping are possible. The combination of power electronics with electrolytic capacitors for storing the intermediate circuit voltage and the data electronics for regulation and control, means, that power line and data line are close together. This is exactly what makes the drive so affectable to faults . In particular, after a few years in service, parts can fail due to usage, burn or even explode.
Due to the complexity of the components, spares for replacement can be very expensive. In particular, if they are no longer produced and a conversion with a new device is necessary. The costs then are set together of new equipment, installation (possibly conversion time and adaptation of circuit diagrams), parameterization, commissioning.
Due to the rapid advancement of technology and by the short-term of technological improvement, outdated electronics like microchips, which were installed 10 years ago and produced millions of times, are no longer produced today. This brings many manufacturers to major difficulties. Electronics, which are no longer available, are then mostly replaced by newer and alternative parts.
FLP organises collection of the faulty drive or electronic board from the customer's premises by courier or will take it from the lift upon request with its own staff. The defective part is then express shipped to one of their european partners for repair and is then returned by the same Express courier service. On request, FLP can also do work on site, such as replacement of the whole drive or part or give technical assistance on site to the customers technicians.
It is important that parameters are retained after repair, especially in lifts with proprietary technology, so they do not need to be re-entered on installation. Parameter setting can be difficult and time consuming. By keeping the original parameters memorised in the drive, it can eliminate the need to carry out a shaft learn or to set up the load weighing device. If required, FLP will offer technical support on site or by phone to the customer.
After a refurbishment, all equipment, whether electronic boards or drives, will be set in a new condition. The faulty part will be totally dismanteled into its components and individually tested in detail. Parts such as electrolytic capacitors, power resistors and defective boards are generally replaced as a matter of course as they are subject aging. In this way reliability of the repairs is increased greatly. After reassembly, a functional and endurance test is done by installing the part in a functional original control system.