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Will a Stair Lift Fit My Staircase?

Stair Lifts Fit Most Staircases

One of the most common questions that we receive from those interested in a stair lift, is "Will the Stairlift Fit My Staircase?" To properly determine if a stairlift will fit your particular staircase, we'll get started by asking the following questions:

  • What type of staircase do you have? (straight, or is it one with curves, turns or landings)
  • What is the height of the person that will be using the stair lift?

For Straight Staircases

straight rail stairlift installed by Lifeway Mobility

If you have a straight staircase, it's a simple, straight-forward measurement of the width of the staircase. We'll need to measure the distance from the wall on one side, to the wall or railing on the other side. The track is mounted on the treads of the stairs and will extend out from the wall between 6 to 9 inches. The distance needs to be a minimum of 29″ wide to fit a stairlift, and most staircases are strong enough to hold a stairlift.

Every staircase is different, so there are times when the minimum width required is more or less than 29″. There are also other factors, such as the height of the user of the stairlift.

For Staircases with Curves, Turns, or Landings

custom curved stair lift in home by Lifeway Mobility

If you have a staircase that has curves, turns, or intermediate landings, we will still need to measure the width of your staircase, but will also need more advance measurements. The curved stair lifts we offer are custom made and require an advanced photo shoot so that the rail can be fabricated to fit your specific stairway. This advanced measurement is done by our consultant at your home and is then sent to the manufacturer.

Stair Lift Components Fold Up

Stair Lift with components folded upThe seat, arms, and footrest will fold-up when the lift is not in use. When folded up, stairlifts will extend from 11" to 16" away from the wall and allow for others in the home to use the staircase. Again, that may vary depending on the type of stair lift you decide to purchase. 

Folding Rail

The rail, also known as the track, usually extends beyond the bottom of the staircase. If the rail extends into an area that gets a lot of foot traction, it can present a tripping hazard. There are two ways that people solve this:

  1. Put a small plant or tree in front of the rail so that anyone walking by will be able to see the tree or plant and the rail. We have many customers that do this and it has worked for them!
  2. Select the manual or electric folding rail option when purchasing the stair lift. A folding rail enables the rail to fold-up and out of the way when the stairlift is not in use.

Interested in learning more about stair lifts? Check out the Lifeway Mobility ultimate stair lift guide.

To schedule a free remote or in-home evaluation, please contact us.


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