F.A.Q’s About Stairlifts

Anyone investigating stairlifts will have many questions. First and foremost is the issue of safety.

Are stairlifts safe?

Yes, residential stairlifts and elevators are very safe, as long as you follow the manufacturer’s recommendations and local building codes. Make sure that you buy your stairlift or elevator from an experienced company that uses licensed installers such as Western Stairlifts.

Are stairlifts attached to the wall or the stairway?

Most stairlifts are attached to the tread of the stairway rather than the wall. There are some advantages to this installation. First, it does not mar the wall decor. Second, this installation allows you to take the stairlift with you if you move to a new home.

How wide does the stairway have to be to accommodate the stairlift?

Most stairlifts require a 36″ wide step. If there is a handrail attached to the wall, it will most likely have to be removed. The stairlift itself typically takes up about 14″ of space when folded, allowing easy use of the stairway for other members of the family.

Can a stairlift be used on a stairway with a landing, turn or curve?

Complex stairways such as curved stairways may require custom fabrication of the lift system. Almost any stairway configuration can be accommodated including landings, curves, spirals, and multiple pitches. Inside and outside radius stairways can also be accommodated.

How does a stairlift work?

A track is attached directly to the stair tread. The chair and power-pack or battery, drive the chair up and down the track.

Can I install the stairlift myself?

Most manufacturers of stairlifts require professional installation to avoid voiding the warranty. In addition, the liability for improperly installing the lift and having a person fall from the chair just isn’t worth the savings. The professional installers at Western Stairlift have many years of experience, understand the building codes and know exactly what they are doing.

If there is a power outage can we still use the stairlift?

Many stairlifts use a battery for powering the lift. The battery is continually charged with a trickle charger. If the power goes out, the battery will still allow the lift to be used as many as 20 to 30 cycles.

Does Medicare pay for Stairlifts.

At this time Medicare does not consider a stairlift a medical necessity, so they will not pay for the stairlift.

For other questions or concerns, call the professionals at Western Stairlift.

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