The Lowdown on Straight Stair Lifts
this article you will find the different things that make up a stair
lift. Sort of the nuts and bolts of stair lift design. This article will
also offer interesting tid-bits of information that will in the very
least offer reading material for bathroom time.
- There are 3 types of Stair lift drives that are available for consumer
Cable - Most
cable drive systems use a strong steel cable, the kind used in
elevators, to advance the passenger. From what I hear, these have a very
long life span and are a much cheaper, safer option.
Worm drive: This is a new type of drive that offers a smoother,
quieter, more fluid machine. It looks like a big screw that rotates on
Rack & Pinion - This
system operates on a gear and teeth system. It is a round gear that
rides along the teeth of the track. Most of the stair lifts today are
rack and pinion… however, with the new worm drive… things might be
Different types of stair lifts:
I mentioned earlier… there are many different types of stair lifts.
Your two categories of interest will be Straight stair lifts and Curved
stair lifts; both names speak for themselves. When it comes down to it,
the type of stair lift that you get will weigh heavily on your stair
type. If it is a straight run of stairs, then your obvious choice will
be a straight stair lift. If the stairs have any curve to them
whatsoever, your choice will be a curved stair lift. There is one
exception however… sometimes you come across a set of stairs that has
a staircase going up to a landing and then another stair case on the
opposite side. Now in this case, you can go either way: a curved stair
lift that goes from the top to the bottom, or two straight stair lifts.
Another area that will determine the type is whether or not your stairs
are indoor or outdoor. Weight of a person also plays a factor as most
stair lifts do have a weight capacity. All in all, the type of stair
lift you either rent, purchase, or find second-hand will ultimately
decide for itself with the type of stairs you have.
– The track is secured to the stairs… most companies use aluminum or
metal… but mainly aluminum because of its light weight and durability.
Rails are mainly consisted of a hard durable plastic or lightweight
aluminum that attaches to the stairs via foot plates.
– You have your choice of AC, DC, or FC [Flintstone charge]. Your AC
model or “alternating current” will run off of a standard house hold
current and will plug into a grounded outlet. The DC model or “direct
current” will be your battery operated stair lifts. The DC model still
plugs in to the wall and primarily runs off of a trickle charge but
still can handle only so much. The nice thing about DC power is that in
the event of a power outage you still have the ability to operate the
machine. However, once the batteries are dead… they are completely
dead and must be replaced. Most people choose the AC power because of
its consistent functionality.
– The swivel seat allows the user to rotate and lock into place so
that they are able to get on and off the stair lift away from the
stairs. This seems to be the safest option as the latter requires the
rider to get off and on facing the stairs… one wrong move and OUCH!
are two types of swivel seats:
– This swivel seat requires the rider to hold down a lever and rotate
the seat themselves.
– This style does all the work for you… you simply continue to hold
the up switch and the seat automatically turns and locks into place.
– Most of the newer stair lifts have a diagnostics system on board.
These usually consist of blinking lights or numbers or alpha numeric
codes. They are nice because you can call the company you purchased or
rented the stair lift from and based on the reading, they can give you
the appropriate next step to take for resolution.
– Some companies sell straight stair lifts for self-install and these
are a good deal. Not only are they really easy to install but you can
find a good deal on them too. Curved straight lifts will require company
installation and will run you a good amount of money.
Shop for a stairlift like
you would a mortgage or a car. When you request help from us, we
provide you with quotes from 3 different stair lift companies.
StairLiftAnswers.com is the only independent referral source on the
net. For more information on stair lifts and 3 quotes -
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Straight Stair Lifts Part 2