Troubleshoot & Fix Broke Commercial Or Personal Use Wheelchair Lift

A broken wheelchair lift can wreck your day, weekend or trip.  When your wheelchair lift stops, panic can set in and we tend to act with emotion and sometimes over think simple solutions when you attempt to fix a broken wheelchair lift.  In many cases it can be a simple fix, seat belt un-clipped, low voltage or the most common is the door full open limit switch is not activated.  Below we have troubleshooting tips on what to check for when attempting to fix your broken wheelchair lift.

Broke Hydraulic Commercial Wheelchair Lift

Having a broke hydraulic wheelchair lift can leave you stranded if you are not familiar with what to look for when it happens.  Sometimes the solution to fix the broke wheelchair lift is very easy, sometimes it requires a certified tech to service the lift.  If your hydraulic leaves you stranded you can try these troubleshooting methods to fix your broke wheelchair lift.

Hydraulic Wheelchair Lift Will Not DEPLOY

  • Start The Vehicle
  • Verify Hand Pendant Power Is ON
  • Verify The Interlock Is Set, Vehicle Ignition ON, Emergency Brake Set & Lift Power ON
  • Make Sure The Breaker Did Not Release - Commonly Located Under The Hood Next To Battery - Reset If It Did Release
  • Check Hand Pendant, Make Sure Power Is To Pendant, Look Over The Cable The Hand Pendant Is Connected To, Look For Areas Appeared To Be Smashed.  If You See An Area, Hold Deploy Button & Wiggle Smashed Area.
  • Check Vehicle Ground Connection, Winter & Road Salt Will Cause Corrosion.  Remove Ground & Clean Both The Vehicle Chassis & Ground Wire Connection
  • Door Full Open Limit Switch, Verify The Door Is Fully Open Hitting The Limit Switch
  • Check Breaker On Lift. Typically Located On Top Of Pump Cover

Advanced Broke Wheelchair Lift Deploy/Down Troubleshooting

  1. With a test light or multi meter, locate the power cable connection going into the wheelchair pump.  Check to make sure the power cable has power entering the wheelchair lift, if you don't you should trace the power cable back to battery and look for damage causing loss of power.
  2. Push the deploy on the hand pendant, Ricon wheelchair lifts have a stow lock solenoid that keeps it from drifting out into the doors or if pressure is lost it keeps the lift from rapidly dropping to the ground possibly injuring individuals.  When you push deploy you should hear the solenoid clicking and releasing.  If you hear it releasing and the lift is not lowering give a pull on the platform pulling it out.  If you do not hearing it releasing you need to locate the cover on the side of the lift.  On one side of the lift you will see a large cover that is for the pump, typically on the opposite side will be the solenoid.  Remove the 9/16 bolts.  Examine where the solenoid wiring connects to main lift harness, un-clip the connectors and check for excessive corrosion, if dirty clean points and clip them back together firmly.  The Solenoid will have a thin tall clip that should be attached to the return spring.  If the thin clip is disconnected from either the spring or solenoid post re-attach them together.  Once you have them re-connected push the deploy button on the hand pendant to see if the solenoid activates.  If you still have no action, it is possible the solenoid has failed and will need to be replaced.  BraunAbility wheelchair lifts have drift struts.  Push the stow button to raise the lift fully vertical, hit the deploy button and make sure the locks stay up allowing the platform to lower.  The drift struck is a gas strut, if it's worn out the drift strut will collapse back to the lift faster then it deploys, if needed with a screw driver manually hold the strut up until the lift deploys past them.  The solution would be to replace them.
  3. Manually deploy the broke wheelchair lift, to floor level.  If the broke wheelchair lift has a seat belt, make sure its fully clipped in, wiggle connections while pushing the down button and check for lose or broke wire.  Next you should locate the outboard rollstop at the end of the platform, check on the side of the platform for limit switches, remove covers if necessary.  Make sure the outboard is fully activating the limit switch.  Adjust if not fully engaging and test.  At the opposite side of the platform is the inboard roll stop.  Lift the bridge plate up so you can see the threshold plate.  In the middle you will see a black bloke, this is a pressure limit switch.  Push down and listen to hear the switch clicking and releasing.  If you hear it clicking and releasing hold the bridge plate up and test lift.  If still no activation you can remove the pressure limit switch, disconnect the switch.  To verify this is the issue with the broke wheelchair lift you could connect the two wires on the main lift harness side to temporarily bypass the switch.  If the lift operates with them temporally connected it confirms the issue.  Immediately disconnect the wires and re-connect the pin connector and replace the switch.  You should never operate the lift without this pressure limit switch, if you use the lift for commercial use you are not compliant and face major liability issues, if the lift is personal use you will run the risk of flipping your family member in the wheelchair off the platform from floor level.  It's simply a troubleshooting technique to verify the solution without the new switch.

Hydraulic Wheelchair Lift Will Not Go Up

  • Check and make sure the seat belt is connected.
  • Make sure you have power, start the vehicle and let it run.
  • Verify the hand pedant is turned ON
  • Door Full Open Limit Switch, Verify The Door Is Fully Open Hitting The Limit Switch
  • Check Hand Pendant, Make Sure Power Is To Pendant, Look Over The Cable The Hand Pendant Is Connected To, Look For Areas Appeared To Be Smashed.  If You See An Area, Hold Deploy Button & Wiggle Smashed Area.
  • Make Sure The Breaker Did Not Release - Commonly Located Under The Hood Next To Battery - Reset If It Did Release

Advanced Broke Wheelchair Lift Up/Stow Troubleshooting

  1. The lift has lowered to the ground, the wheelchair user has rolled on, you push the up button and nothing.  At the end of the platform check if there is a limit switch.  If so, tapp it a few times to see if it's stuck and release.  You can also look to make sure it the wire harness is firmly clipped together.  You will commonly see a micro limit switch or a mag switch.  Check switch for proper function, replace if necessary.  If the wheelchair lift is raising up a few inches and the outboard roll stop is not completely vertical activating the limit switch the lift will automatically stop.   The outboard roll stop needs to be fully closed and limit switch being activated before it will travel higher.  A quick solution is to load the wheelchair on backwards.  When you do this you will be putthing the batteries and more weight closer to the lifting point on the wheelchair lift.  The vertical arms are connected to the platform and have rams the perfrom the raising and lowering of the wheelchair lift.  The strenght of the wheelchair is this area.
  2. Limit Switches in the parrarrell arms need to be in proper activation.  The pararrale arms are attached to the top of the vertical arms.  You will see a wire harness with limit switches.  Locate the small micro limit switch and make sure the down limit is activated and the up is open.  If the down is not, bend tap to adjust.  Trace the wire harness back throutout the lift and look for smashed areas.  If you locate split of smach areas along the harness inspect to see if you have broken wires.  Check in areas that have tight corners and inspect for brakes in wires, if possible wiggle wire harness in different areas while pushing the up button on the hand pendant.  Continue to follow the harness all the way back to under the cover.  Remove cover and continue to trace to board.  You might come across points where they are junctions in the harness, this allows you to replace certain ares without replace the entire wire harness.  Make sure all junctions are firmly conected and crrorsion free.  If the wire harness appears to be damage free we would recommend you manual stow the wheelchair lift, put the pump cover back on and bring the lift to a certified tech.  If you are not careful you can very easliy short the board out and have an expensive repair bill ahead.

Broke Wheelchair Lift Manual Override - Deploy & Down

On the side of the broke wheelchair lift you will have a pump handel.  It looks similiar to a jack handel.  Remove the jack hadel and locate the front of the wheelchair pump inside of the vehicle.  On the top you will see they have instructions to follow.  Locate the Pump Cover, on the front you will see a small tee post, one end of the pump handel you will have it open with a small notch in the bottom.  Place the bottom of the handel with notch and insert it over the t post.  Before you turn the handel you will need to lift up on the inboard roll stop resting on the lifts threshold, you only need to raise it slighly to raise the bridge plate over the stow locks.   Turn the handel 1/4 counter clockwise and it will start to deploy to floor height.  When you turn the handel clockwise you will tighten the t post and the lift wil stop.  Open the t post untill the lift is at floor level and tighten back to stop lift for loading on to the wheelchair platform.  Ensure it's as tight before loading on.  When the wheelchair is centered on the platform, turn the t post back counter clockwise to lower to ground.  When the lift is level on the ground help open the outboard roll stop if necessary.  Push up on the locks resting over the outboard barrier.

Broke Wheelchair Lift Manual Overide - Up/Stow

 

 

  • Verify Hand Pendant Power Is On
  • If Equipped With Seat Belt, Make Sure It's Clipped In, Once Fastened Wiggle It To See If Has Loose Connection
  • Verify The Interlock Is Set, Vehicle Ignition ON, Emergency Brake Set & Lift Power ON
  • Make Sure The Breaker Did Not Release - Commonly Located Under The Hood Next To Battery
  • Outboard Roll Stop Is Free To Raise, Some Lifts Require This To Close With In A Time Period And Activate A Limit Switch, If You Are Trying To Raise A Larger Wheelchair, Remove Wheelchair & Attempt To Raise, If It Works Without Load, Attempt To Load Wheelchair Backwards Brining The Weight Closer To The Lifts Lifting Point Which Is The Vertical Arms
  • Check Vehicle Ground Connection, Winter & Road Salt Will Cause Corrosion.  Remove Ground & Clean Both The Vehicle Chassis & Ground Wire Connection
  • Start Vehicle, Low Voltage Can Cause The Lift To Stop Working
  • Check The Hand Pendant Wire, Look For Areas That Appeared To Be Smash And Wiggle The Spot That Is Smashed.  Hand Pendants Get Slammed In Doors Crimping The Wires Causing Them To Short Out.
  • Door Full Open Limit Switch, Verify The Door Is Fully Open Hitting The Limit Switch

 

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