For those who require the use of wheelchairs to get around, ascending stairs is always a concern. For the most part, ramps are available in public places and can often be designed to meet the needs of a wheelchair user’s home. Of course, there are circumstances when a ramp is either unavailable or simply not feasible to install. This is when a porch lift or vertical platform lift is an ideal solution.
What are porch lifts?
Porch lifts are large mechanical platform lifts that ascend a few feet off the ground in order to assist wheelchair users with bypassing flights of stairs. Generally, these lifts include single, open platforms that provide ample space for wheelchair users to enter and exit. Of course, they also include drive mechanisms that control the up-and-down movements of the lifts. Generally, porch lifts are installed near the front or side doors of a house to provide wheelchair users easy access to getting in and out.
When is a porch lift considered an ideal solution for one’s mobility issue?
When an individual utilizes a wheelchair for getting around and is unable to climb up and down stairs, as a result, and no ramp is available, a porch lift makes an ideal solution. They are designed to withstand extreme weather conditions and can be installed both outside and inside garages, depending on where the user is most comfortable entering and exiting the home.
There are some vertical platform lifts, however, that can be installed inside the home. This is often recommended to wheelchair users who live in homes with more than one floor and may need access to each of them. Inside most homes, a ramp is not generally feasible. As well, wheelchair users may not necessarily wish to use stair lifts if transfers to and from the wheelchair are particularly uncomfortable.
What are call/send switches?
These options enable porch lift users to either call the lifts up to the levels they are at or send the lifts down to the lower levels to provide other wheelchair users access to them. Call/send switches may be installed at either the tops or the bottoms of the lifts, but having both is also an option. Many users prefer to have their porch lifts remain in the lower level positions when not in use to prevent debris from accumulating underneath them. This is especially important during our harsh Canadian winters when the build-up of snow is commonplace.
What factors are important when considering the type of porch lift to install?
Porch lifts do vary in size and capacity. So, certainly the size and weight of its user is an important factor to consider. Be sure to take into consideration the weight of both the wheelchair user and the wheelchair to determine if the weight capacity of the porch lift is acceptable.
Of course, there are a few other important details that are wise to discuss during a consultation with your porch lift provider. At Advantage Home Health Solutions, we consult with each and every one of our clients to ensure that they are eventually equipped with the perfect solution for their mobility issues.
If you have any questions about the porch lifts that Advantage Home Health Solutions has to offer, please don’t hesitate to contact us to ask them. Give us a call at 403-460-5438. You may also email us by filling out the form on our Contact Page!