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Double Glazing

Elevators make it possible for riders to access high building levels without the exertion of walking up multiple flights of stairs. Each elevator uses a specifically designed hoist mechanism for moving the elevator's car safely within the shaft, or hoistway. The hoist mechanism design depends on a variety of factors, including the number of stories within a building, as well as movement comfort.


What defines the minimum size of an elevator lobby that is not for Fire Service Access? Is any size acceptable so long as it meets the minimum egress width?

Ron Geren


There are no requirements specific to elevator lobbies. If the elevator lobby is required to be an Area of Refuge (AOR), then the size requirements for AORs (Section 1007.6) are applicable. Elevator lobbies for fire service elevators have a minimum size per Section 3007.7.4, and lobbies for occupant evacuation elevators have a minimum size per Section 3008.7.4.

If the elevator lobby does not fall into one of these types, then minimum width requirements for corridors would be applicable, since they are corridors by definition ("An enclosed exit access component that defines and provides a path of egress travel."). As such, dead end corridor requirements per Section 1018.4 would be applicable.

(Note: All references are for the 2012 IBC)


Is an elevator lobby floor, located between an enclosed public parking garage (S-2) and a retail store (M) required to raised above the parking deck?

Ed Moisio

Question-- Fire Extinguishers in machine rooms--We went to a electronic means of tracking and maintaining our fire extinguishers meeting NFPA10 requirements. The elevator inspector issued us a violation for improper testing and maintenace of the fire extinguisher because we no longer use tags.He quoted AMSE A17.1 Since I do not have a copy or thsoe standards is he correct?

Ron Geren

@Brendan: I'm not sure exactly what you mean. Are you asking if the floor elevations need to be changed--like raise 6 inches or so? If so, there is no requirement. There may be a need to provide a curb or bollards to protect the elevator lobby from accidental vehicle intrusion.

@Ed Moisio: The specific cite reference in ASME A17.1 states that an extinguisher be provided; however, there is no requirement mentioned that pertains to the maintenance and inspection of that fire extinguisher. Therefore, whatever maintenance and inspection is permitted by NFPA 10 should be acceptable. NFPA 10, Section permits the use of electronic inspection records.


I have looked through ASME A17.1 and cannot find a requirement for a hydraulic elevator machine room to be on the bottom floor (seen recommendations for this location). Do you see any requirement or advantage to having this machine room (along w/ the hydraulic oil) on the top floor)?

paul orlando

can a elevator be used as the only way to enter the second floor of a R-1 building. There two other egress stairways from the second floor but no way to enter from first floor

Ron Geren

@Paul: You can restrict access to floor only through the elevator, but the stairs must be accessible for egress.

Ron Geren

@Kent: There is no requirement from a code perspective that limits where the equipment room can be located. The manufacturer may have some limitations, though. I have no preference where it should be located.

Bryan T

Can an elevator be accessed through a room? We are planning an addition to a university auditorium building. This addition will include an elevator to provide accessibility from the auditorium front, stage, and basement. The only access to the elevator would be through an existing room used for dressing & make-up. There's no fire separation required for the addition. Can the elevator be accessed through this room? The building does not have corridors or halls, per se, only rooms that are linked to other rooms. Thanks in advance!


We have an enclosed elevator lobby in an open parking garage( S-2) that has ground + 3 levels of parking. This lobby opens to the parking garage on all floors and a pedestrian bridge from another building opens into this lobby on the 3rd level. The parking garage is of construction type 1A.
1) Can we have an open stair in the lobby connecting all the floors?
2)Should the lobby be smoke and fire rated?
3) Is there a need of a vestibule for the lobby doors into the garage. The lobby is conditioned space.
The dimensions of the lobby are 20'X100' which includes 4 elevator and an open stair.

Thank you.

Ron Geren

@Bryan T: It depends on who is using the elevator. If it is the public and is required for the accessible route, then no, the elevator cannot be accessed through this room. If the elevator is part of the accessible route, then, per Section 1104.5 (2012 IBC), the accessible route must coincide or be in the general area of the general circulation path.

If the elevator is used only by the auditorium staff for moving equipment or staff personnel, then it could be accessed from this space provided all other elevator requirements are met.

Ron Geren

1) The exception to Section 3002.7 (2012 IBC) allows elevators to not be separated from stairways in open parking garages.
2) Exception 7 to Section 713.14.1 serves only the parking garage.
3) A vestibule for controlling escape of conditioned air is dependent on the designer. The IBC does not prohibit the use of a vestibule.

The bridge connection will need to comply with Section 3104. Also, if the parking garage does not meet the requirements of an open parking garage per Section 406.5, then it is considered an enclosed garage and must conform to the requirements of Section 406.6.


We just had our first 5 year elevator inspection and the Broward County inspector did not pass us. He noted a violation saying that the glass mirrors are not ANSI rated/etched. I’m not sure what that means…do you? I’m wondering if that wasn’t a requirement when the building was built and, if that’s the case, would we be required to bring it up to code when we’re not making any modifications to the elevators?

Ron Geren

@J - Sorry to take so long to respond. Glazing used in elevators must be safety glazing...laminated to be specific. The glass needs to be marked or etched with a label indicating it meets the requirements for safety glazing. The standard per the IBC is either ANSI Z97.1 Class A or CPSC 16 CFR Class II.

I don't know why they are bringing this up after the elevators were installed and previously inspected. When was the elevator installed and what was the code at the time? Maybe it was not required at the time when it was installed. If that is the case, then they cannot make you comply with current code.


Hi there! I could have sworn I've visited this site before but after going through some of the articles I realized it's new to me. Anyhow, I'm certainly pleased I stumbled upon it and I'll be book-marking it and checking back regularly!


This is one very informative post, thanks so much for sharing. There needs to be elevator maintenance in Waldorf MD and this is great to know. http://www.capitalelevatorservice.com/

Jak Manson

Is www.capitalelevatorservice.com the best place to go for elevator maintenance services? I was told to go to them first because they know what to do the best and they get things done quickly and efficiently. If you know information that can help me out, please let me know.

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