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The Symmetry LULA Elevator Buying Guide

Commercial buildings of more than three stories must include an ADA-compliant elevator. While not an issue for new buildings, older buildings without existing elevators don’t always have floor plans conducive to full elevator installation. Commercial buildings not covered by ADA regulations may still want a lift system for the convenience of building occupants or guests. In both cases, LULA elevators offer a cost-efficient solution.

What is a LULA Elevator?

A LULA elevator is a Low-Occupancy/Low-Rise lift system that combines the features of a traditional passenger elevator and a wheelchair lift. LULA elevators provide multi-floor access to low-rise commercial buildings where installing traditional passenger elevators is not feasible or in locations where the ADA does not require an elevator.

A LULA elevator can make up to three stops, or six with approved variances, and travel up to 25 feet or 50 feet with approved variance and derated capacity. Symmetry designed our LULA elevators for use in schools, churches, libraries, multi-family housing units, and similar settings.

Can You Use a LULA Elevator in a Residential Setting?

LULA elevators were designed with commercial applications in mind but can have residential applications. In most cases, a shaftless elevator, inline gear drive elevator, or wheelchair lift is less expensive and better suited to residential settings. However, a LULA elevator may be suitable for large, multi-story dwellings.

Are LULA Elevators ADA-Compliant?

As LULA elevators provide lift transport in commercial and public settings, they must be ADA-compliant. All LULA elevators’ speed, travel, and weight capacity must comply with applicable ADA regulations and local or state building codes. Symmetry LULA elevators, for instance, comply with ASME A17.1 Section 5.2 and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Symmetry LULA Elevator custom interior by others

Standard Features of LULA Elevators

LULA elevators have a rated capacity of 1,400 lbs and travel at 30 fpm. Speeds of 40 fpm are possible with approved variance. A Symmetry LULA elevator has a 2:1 roped hydraulic drive and comes with a wide range of standard features, including:

  • Auto self-leveling to correct for overtravel or undertravel, bringing the elevator car level with floor landings within a tolerance of ½ an inch
  • Homing timer to return the elevator to the floor of your choice after a set period
  • Car-mounted directional indicator with audible signals
  • Digital position indicator
  • 3’0″ x 6’8″ automatic horizontally sliding doors
  • Full-height light curtain to detect obstacles in the way of the elevator doors
  • Programmable Logic Controller
  • Brushless stainless steel cabin operating panel with position indicator
  • Brushed stainless steel hall call buttons

Safety Features of LULA Elevators

LULA elevators must meet the same safety codes as traditional passenger elevators, as laid out in the ASME A17. 1 Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators. Symmetry LULA elevators come with a comprehensive set of safety features, such as:

  • ADA-compliant hands-free emergency phone
  • Keyed in-car stop switch and alarm button
  • Overspeed valve to close off oil flow should a hydraulic line break (required in for elevators in earthquake-risk zones)
  • Broken/slack suspension safeties to prevent excessive travel speed
  • Uninterruptible Power Supply for car lowering and power opening of the car and hoistway doors in the event of a power failure.
  • Emergency lighting for car interior
  • Tactile/Braille characters for COP and landing buttons
  • Emergency manual lowering
  • Buffer springs
  • ETL, UL, or CSA-certified elevator components
  • 3D light curtain
  • Audiovisual two way communication system

LULA Car Size and Features

A LULA elevator must have sufficient room for a wheelchair to enter, exit, and turn in the elevator car. The inside of the car platform typically measures 48” x 54”, or 18 square feet. Symmetry offers multiple platform sizes for our LULA elevators:

  • 48″W x 54″D
  • 42″W x 54″D
  • 42″W x 60″D
  • 51″W x 51″D (for 90˚ enter/exit configurations)

The interior height of the Symmetry LULA elevator is a comfortable 7’0”. It offers an impressive range of customizable options, including interior finishes, car panels, lighting fixtures, and two-speed door options. You can also include a phone line monitoring system or a green drive system with environmentally friendly hydraulic oil.

Symmetry LULA Elevator with Brushed Stainless Steel Door and Entrance

Things to Consider When Buying a LULA Elevator

Purchasing a LULA is a significant investment, so it’s essential to understand what you want from the elevator and what a LULA can provide. Consider the following points:

  • How many people will use the elevator daily?
  • Where will you install the elevator?
  • How many people will want to use the elevator at once?
  • How many floors will the elevator need to service?
  • How much will installation cost?
  • What kind of warranty does the LULA manufacturer offer?
  • How often will the elevator require servicing?

Be realistic about people’s elevator usage. You may plan to only use the elevator for wheelchairs, but building visitors and occupants may have other ideas. Be aware of how the elevator will be used and plan accordingly.

Pick the elevator that meets your building’s needs. If, for instance, you’re adding an elevator to an apartment building, people are likely to use it as a freight elevator as much as a passenger elevator. A traditional elevator or freight elevator serves some facilities better than a LULA.

Ask questions and listen to the experts. Find a certified elevator dealer you trust who can explain the suitability and intended use of the LULA elevator you’re considering and who can recommend alternatives if necessary.

Why Choose the Symmetry LULA?

The Symmetry LULA elevator has several advantages over the competition. Our ADA-compliant LULA is made in the U.S.A. and operates on single-phase power. All elevator lights are energy-saving LEDs, including the COP and car lights, to help keep your operating costs as low as possible.

Installation of the Symmetry LULA requires less renovation than other models, as it requires the shallowest pit depth required in the industry at 13”. Our LULA elevators also only require 104” of overhead, compared to the nine to eleven feet required by other models. These smaller dimensions reduce installation costs while increasing where the Symmetry LULA can be installed in your building.

Ready to learn more about the Symmetry LULA? Check out our LULA elevator brochure and contact your local dealer today.

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