Chairlift for Stairs: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions from Dallas Seniors
Are you or a loved one experiencing difficulty making the trip up and down the stairs safely and comfortably? If you find it painful to use the staircase, or you have taken a fall in the past, you may feel reluctant to use the stairs at all—leaving you limited to just the ground floor of your Dallas home. Or, maybe you have issues with reduced mobility that make it impossible to even attempt the stairs.
Not being able to access every part of your home can be very isolating. You may even be considering moving away from your familiar, much-loved home to somewhere that doesn't have any stairs to contend with. But before you make that heart-wrenching decision, get in touch with your local Dallas aging in place experts to see what we can do. A chairlift for stairs might be the perfect way to restore full access to all parts of your house so you can safely enjoy the upstairs level again.
If you are considering whether a chairlift for stairs is the right aging in place solution for your Dallas home, you may have some questions. This guide answers some of the most frequently asked questions about chairlift for stairs installation that we hear from seniors in the Dallas Metroplex area with expert advice from the team of experienced accessibility renovation contractors at Melesh Construction Dallas.
What is a Chairlift for Stairs?
Also known as a stairlift, it is a home modification for people with mobility issues that allows them to be carried up a flight of stairs on a motorized chair. Chairlifts for stairs are a cost-effective, space-saving alternative to residential elevators that offer a comfortable ride up or down your staircase and come with a full suite of safety features to ensure your comfort. It can be operated by the individual who is using it, or by care services professionals and family members.
How Does It Work?
Unlike wheelchair lifts, a chair lift for stairs does not carry a wheelchair up or down the stairs, an individual is seated on the chairlift itself. And, unlike an installation such as a vertical platform lift, it does not bypass the staircase. Your existing stairs are fitted with a track, or set of rails, with a swivel seat attached. The chair moves up and down the stairs with the power of an electric motor, using a friction drive system, so people with reduced mobility don't have to suffer the discomfort, pain, or risk of using the stairs manually.
What Are the Benefits of a Chairlift for Stairs?
There are a number of big advantages to having a chairlift installed in your Dallas home, from high-quality functionality to low running costs. But those perks pale in comparison to the fact that a chairlift for stairs will improve quality of life for you or your loved one with reduced mobility needs.
Access to Upper Floor
If you have been sleeping in the living room because your bedroom is upstairs and you aren't confident navigating the staircase on your own, you can appreciate how nice it would be to have full access to your upper floor and all the rooms and amenities up there. Even if your bedroom is not located on the upper level, there are probably still a lot of reasons why you would like to be able to go up there whenever you please—it is a big part of your home, after all. A stairlift will restore full access to the upstairs floor so you can use your house to its full potential.
Reduce Risk of Falls
If you have suffered a fall on the stairs before or had a couple of close calls, you are probably understandably concerned about the risk of injuries that could have a serious negative impact on your quality of life and overall comfort. A chairlift for stairs carries you safely up and down the staircase in a seated position and can include additional safety features such as an immobilizer seat belt. It will virtually eliminate the possibility of injury on the stairs so you can have peace of mind knowing you are safe and secure, no matter where you are in your Dallas home.
No one likes to feel like they are dependent on others for everything, even assistance using the stairs. You should be able to go where you want in your own home, when you want, without having to wait for a family member or care assistant to be available to help you. An elderly stair assist chair will give you back a feeling of independence when you are able to go upstairs on a whim—or come downstairs for a midnight kitchen raid.
Safer in an Emergency
In an emergency such as a house fire, it is clearly not safe to be trapped on the upstairs floor with no way of getting to safety and exiting the building. A Dallas chairlift for stairs offers a safe method of egress should there be an emergency. You don't have to worry about being limited in the event of a power outage, either—stair lifts come with battery back-up, and the long-running battery can keep the chairlift operating on battery power until the electricity comes back on.
My Stairs are Curved or Have a Landing, Can I Still Use a Stairlift?
Absolutely. Chairlifts operate by moving along a set of tracks, or rails, and there are plenty of curved rail options to accommodate curved staircases. Landings are no problem either. We will install rails that are perfectly tailored to your unique home, and can function safely around curves and landings.
How Wide Does My Staircase Need to Be to Accommodate a Chairlift?
Even narrow staircases are candidates for safe chairlift installation, though it may be necessary to choose one of the models with the tightest track bends if it is not a straight staircase. The minimum width is generally around 27 inches, with an incline of 52 degrees at the most. That being said, if it is possible to use the stairs normally, it is possible for our team of Dallas aging in place experts to get a stairlift installed as well. We have dealt with many unusually-shaped or otherwise challenging staircases in Dallas and managed to find installation solutions for all of them.
Will Others Be Able to Use the Stairs Normally?
The staircase will still be available for other stair users who live in or are visiting your house in Dallas. Your chairlift will include a fold-up seat that can simply be moved into an upright position when someone needs to get by on a narrow set of steps, and on many staircases it is not even necessary to fold the seat to get past easily.
What Type of Chairlift for Stairs is Best for My Needs?
There are many different types of stair lifts available in Dallas for a smooth ride, and while most models operate in similar ways, some stair lift types come with optional features such as:
Power folding footrest
Retractable reel seat belt
Powered swivel seat or manual swivel seat
Adjustable seat height
Infra-red remote controls
Custom rail extension
Anodized aluminum track
Not sure what is best for your unique needs? Our experienced team of accommodation renovation specialists will be happy to go over all the possibilities with you and help you choose the ideal option for your safety and comfort in your Dallas home.
Will a Chairlift for Stairs Clash With My Home Décor?
You don't have to worry that a stairlift will be an eyesore in your house. They typically come in neutral colors and are surprisingly unobtrusive, so they aren't as glaringly noticeable as you may be thinking. But if you are looking for some added style, there are chair lifts available with contemporary design options such as custom rail color options and seat color options at an additional cost.
Is There a Weight Limit for Chairlifts?
All stairlifts have a maximum weight capacity, but the allowable weight varies according to the model and manufacturer. Typically weight limits range from about 250 to 350 pounds, though there are some higher-end models available that can carry people who are heavier than 350 pounds. All types are only made to accommodate one single individual and should not be used by more than one person at the same time.
Can a Chairlift Be Installed Outdoors?
Yes, that is possible. Usually wheelchair ramps are the go-to solution for outdoor steps, but if Dallas ramp installation for seniors is not suited to your property or individual needs, outdoor stair lifts may be the perfect answer to help ensure that you can get up and down your steps outside just as easily as you can indoors. However, you do need an outdoor stairlift model that is specifically designed for outdoor use, because it needs protection from harsh weather elements—particularly the electronic components.
How Much Does Dallas Stairlift Installation Cost?
We are not able to give you an exact price quote, because the cost of installation in Dallas can vary so widely based on factors such as the length and orientation of your staircase, whether you need a curved stair lift or a straight stair lift, and the features you want or need. There are also considerations such as power supply—if you do not have an electrical outlet in the correct area for the chairlift mechanism to be plugged in, a new outlet will need to be added which will increase the average cost of installation.
However, Melesh Construction Dallas does offer free home assessments to determine if a chairlift for stairs is the right solution for your home. We will come visit your house in Dallas, free of charge, and inspect your staircase. Once our team of mobility modification specialists has had the opportunity to look at your home in person, we can offer a reasonable estimate for the overall cost of professional installation.
How Long Does It Take to Install a Chairlift for Stairs?
That depends on factors such as the shape of your staircase, but generally speaking you can expect it to take around three to four hours. It is not a particularly time-consuming modification, so you don't have to worry about a major disruption that will require you to vacate your home overnight or cope with other major inconveniences. Our team will be able to get it finished within one working day, and you can begin enjoying your new chairlift for stairs as soon as the installation is complete. Please note that if there are obstacles near or along the steps, such as framed photos and potted plants, we will need to move them out of the way during installation and replace them afterwards to avoid damage or injury.
Are You Considering a Dallas Chairlift for Stairs? Our Accessibility Renovation Specialists Can Help!
If you are a senior in the greater Dallas area who needs home modifications such as a chairlift for stairs to increase your mobility, safety, and independence, rely on the friendly aging in place experts at Melesh Construction Dallas. We pride ourselves on providing high-quality workmanship and dedicated customer service that goes above and beyond.
Melesh Construction Dallas is CAPS and CHAMP Certified, a NARI Professional, and a BBB A+ Accredited Business. We have years of experience helping people like you in the Dallas Metroplex remain in their homes safely, and access all parts of their homes without concern that they may be injured.
Get in contact with us today at 972-866-7781 to schedule a free home assessment, or to chat with our knowledgeable customer service representatives. Find out more about what we can do to convert your well-loved home into a comfortable and fully accessible house where you can age in place in familiar surroundings.