Wheelchair Lift Options For Your Residence
If you’ve recently experienced an illness or injury and now have to use a wheelchair, you will probably have some difficulty adjusting to living in the same area you occupied before, especially if you reside in a two-story home or apartment. Although regular residences pose their own problems, two-story residences are particularly difficult because you have to deal with the issue of figuring out how to get your wheelchair up and down stairs and to different levels in the home.
Although the task may seem daunting, it is important to remember not to give up; plenty of products and services exist to help wheelchair users move about their homes with relative ease, including between floors. Take a look at the following examples of wheelchair lift options for your residence, and you can begin to consider which works best for you and your home.
Vertical platform lifts
A vertical platform lift is a simple platform, large enough to fit your wheelchair, with a mechanism that moves it directly upwards to heights of up to 14 feet. Generally, vertical platform lifts are used to help wheelchair users ascend from a base level to a porch, raised deck, or other type of short level that otherwise would involve climbing stairs. They can be installed indoors or outdoors, and generally tend to be simpler and cheaper than home elevators or stair lifts.
A home elevator is the next step up from the vertical platform lift; it works by moving your wheelchair vertically upwards, but is usually fully enclosed and is often used to move between different floors rather than to a raised deck or porch. These are especially helpful if your home is very large and a vertical platform lift may not be able to accommodate going up one or more floors; however, they are also often pricier and harder to install than the other types of lift options.
Stair lifts are used specifically to move wheelchair users along a flight of stairs, rather than in an exposed area such as a landing. They work by moving a platform containing a wheelchair diagonally up the stairs, and generally are easy to use and install because they do not take up any extra space other than what your stairs already occupy.