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Are Stair Lifts Safe?

Posted on by John Burfield

A common question among people shopping for a stair lift is, “Are they safe?”. Stair lifts that are installed properly by an experienced provider and used correctly are extremely safe. Quality manufacturers (like Bruno) go to great lengths to make sure their stair lifts meet rigorous safety standards.

There are several things that should be kept in mind to maximize safety when using and operating a stair lift

  1. Make sure the user is able to stand, bear weight, and pivot
  2. Make sure wheelchair users have ample strength to safely transfer from wheelchair to stair lift
  3. Adhere to the stated weight capacity of your lift. Typically, between 300 and 400 lbs.
  4. Use safety features like the seat belt and swivel seat when riding and offloading the stair lift
  5. Use an experienced and licensed company to install your stair lift
  6. Schedule yearly preventive maintenance appointments with your provider

In addition, there some design considerations and upgrade safety options to consider, depending on the user's mobility:

  • Footplate and motor sensors that will detect an obstruction on the stairs and stop the lift
  • Seats fitted with seat belts that will keep a rider secured while the lift is in motion
  • Swivel seats that will turn away from the top of the stairs while offloading
  • Batteries that are constantly charging so that a lift can be used during a power outage
  • Optional folding rail at the bottom of the stairs to avoid a tripping hazard
  • Enclosed motor to prevent clothing or hair from becoming caught

While these design features go a long way to ensure the safe use of a stairlift, what's most important is to have the staircase and mobility needs assessed by a trusted accessibility consultation to confirm that it is going to be the safest solution for the person in need.

Final Thoughts

Anyone buying a stair lift should have little to worry about if they look for the design features discussed above and follow the proper precautions. A qualified provider will be able to confirm various safety features on individual stair lift models and give proper instruction for use.

To find an experienced provider look for those with proper licensing, factory certification, credentials such as Certified Aging-in-Place Specialist (CAPS) or Certified Environmental Access Consultant (CEAC), and positive reviews and testimonials. That way you can be confident that they have the knowledge, experience, and a history of customer satisfaction.

For information on stair lift safety or to set up a free consultation, contact us.

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