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Genie Lift Malfunctions

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Genie Lift is a company that produces material handling devices as well as man lifts or baskets. Certain malfunctions can develop while operating one of these devices. By properly troubleshooting the problem, operators can determine most of the malfunctions. Genie Lift provides a parts and service manual with each new piece of equipment. These manuals have a troubleshooting flow chart and procedures to follow to resolve malfunctions.

LED Diagnostic Readout

Most Genie Lift devices have an LED diagnostic readout display that provides a malfunction code. The malfunction code tells the operator or maintenance person what malfunction is occurring with the Genie Lift. A small dot at the end of the numbers blinks during normal operations, but remain solid if a malfunction occurs.

Machine Does Not Drive

If the Genie Lift will not drive, malfunction code 18 displays on the diagnostic readout. It can appear if the pothole guard is blocked or the pothole limit switches are not activating. Another cause of this malfunction is a damaged wire connection.

Machine Does Not Lift

Another malfunction that occurs with a Genie Lift is the device will not lift when the operator engages the joystick or lifting controls. A couple of situations can cause this malfunction. It could be that the function switch is tied down, which requires the operator to release the function enable switch before he can lift the device. It could also be that the electronic control module (ECM) is defective or a problem has occurred in the joystick controls.


Sometimes the Genie Lift will move forward and back, up and down, but will not turn left or right. When this malfunction occurs, the ECM is not sending a signal to the steering coils. Each direction has its own coil, so the Genie Lift can turn left, but may not be able to turn right or vice versa.

No Power

Some malfunctions on a Genie Lift can be obvious to some operators but not to others. Low voltage in the batteries can result in no power. If the lift/drive switch is in the off position or the ECM is not programmed properly, it can also cause the Genie Lift not to power up after the operator engages the ignition key.


Mitchell Brock has been writing since 1980. His work includes media relations and copywriting technical manuals for Johnson & Johnson, HSBC, FOX and Phillip Morris. Brock graduated from the University of Southern California in 1980, earning a Bachelor of Arts in English.

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