Buying a Stairlift: Separating Fact from Fiction
There is nothing shameful about buying a stairlift. That is one simple truth that we always aim to impart to our clients that we work with every single day here at UK Stairlifts in Leeds. We see it all the time; the shame or the feeling of helplessness during the buying and installation process. No one wants to admit that they need help climbing the stairs in their Leeds property. But, we are here to tell you that regaining control over your mobility is one of the bravest and proudest things anyone could ever do.
This fear that it is somehow shameful to have a stairlift within your home stems from a lot of misinformation surrounding stairlifts in general. So, knowing that that is not true, what other misconceptions about stairlifts can we clear up?
Fiction: Only the elderly need stairlifts.
This is one of the most common misconceptions that we come across with stairlifts. This notion that only the elderly need stairlifts is simply not true. We have installed stairlifts for virtually all ages across the spectrum. Sometimes a stairlift is needed for mobility hampering disabilities, or even for those who are prone to epileptic episodes that make navigating stairs dangerous. These can impact the lives of anyone, at any age.
While it may be true that the majority of stairlifts are installed for those who are elderly, it is not the only instance where they are needed. There is no age limit on stairlifts, and there never has been.
Fiction: Stairlifts are bulky, and occupy the entire staircase.
We often get asked when we are preparing for an install if the stairlift will make the stairs unusable without it. This is a valid concern, as many people want their stairs to remain accessible to those who don’t need a stairlift. Luckily, this fear is largely unfounded.
Most stairlifts are incredibly low-profile and sit very close to the wall or railing. They only take up about 1/3rd of the staircase in the vast majority of situations. Of course, there may be outlier cases in which a staircase is incredibly narrow, but this is not the norm. In almost every situation the stairlift leaves plenty of room for navigating the stairs beside it.
Fiction: Stairlifts can only be installed on straight staircases.
Many homes in the UK have spiral staircases, or semi-curved staircases. This can lead to the misconception that the stairs are not suitable for a stairlift. Many homeowners fear that their staircase design and shape will prevent them from getting access to a much-needed stairlift if their stairs are not straight as an arrow.
Luckily, this is indeed a misconception. Stairlifts can be installed and operated on spiral staircases just as easily as on straight staircases. Our team at UK Stairlifts Leeds has loads of experience installing and maintaining spiral staircase stairlifts.
Fiction: A stairlift will reduce your personal independence.
It’s an unfortunate fact that many homeowners who need a stairlift refuse to get one, simply because they believe it will take away their freedoms and independence. However, that is simply not true. As we mentioned at the start, there is nothing wrong with admitting that you need some help navigating your stairs. A stairlift will grant you more freedom and ability to navigate your own home. If anything, a stairlift gives you more independence as you won’t need any assistance going up or down your stairs anymore.
Fiction: Installing a stairlift is an invasive process.
Many people believe that to have a stairlift installed, you need to allow your home to become a construction site. That your walls will be torn apart, your stairs messed up, and the entire integrity of your home changed. This is simply not true.
Stairlift installation is an incredibly simple process. The rails are installed directly to the stair treads, not into the wall. This reduces the impact the stairlift has on the home, and won’t affect the property value at all. In addition, almost all stairlifts can be installed within only a few hours. The process is quick, easy, and non-invasive!
Fiction: Stairlifts will stop working during power outages.
Power outages are very frustrating, and can leave you feeling totally helpless within your own home. Unfortunately, this leads to the fear that when the power goes out, a stairlift will immediately stop working. This could leave someone stranded within their own home, unable to get up or down the stairs – or worse, stuck in the middle.
The truth is that modern stairlifts operate on D/C current batteries. These batteries are charged from the mains, and activated when you use the lift. This means that if the power is out, the batteries will still have quite a bit of charge in them. You don’t need direct power to use your stairlift!
Fiction: Stairlifts aren’t safe.
One of the biggest mental hurdles that our clients face is the potential safety risks of a stairlift. They worry that stairlifts won’t stop when a potential obstacle gets in it’s way – like a pet or a child. They also worry that stairlifts may suddenly begin moving on their own, or lose traction and slide down the stairs rapidly with them in it. This can all be super scary!
We want to assure you, and all of our potential clients, that none of this is true or even possible. Stairlifts come with an astounding amount of built-in safety features. They have emergency brakes, locking mechanisms, sensors and even built-in alarms. They are designed to overcome any potential part failure or obstacle. They are just as safe as any lift!
At UK Stairlifts in Leeds we always aim to dispel the myths and misconceptions about stairlifts. In truth, stairlifts are a safe, cost effective, and empowering addition to your home when needed. They can make your life so much easier, and improve the way you navigate within your own home. In the end, the worries you may have about a stairlift can always be eased when you contact our team of professional stairlift experts. We are always here to answer your questions, and get you the stairlift of your dreams.