Stairlifts Explained

Common Stairlift FAQs

Below you will find answers to the most commonly asked questions about stairlifts:

 

  1. Q1. How do Stairlifts Work?
  2. Q2. How much do Stairlifts cost?
  3. Q3. How long will I have to wait before my stairlift is installed?
  4. Q4. How long will I have to wait for my stairlift?
  5. Q5. Does my stairlift come with a warranty?
  6. Q6. How is the stairlift fitted?
  7. Q7. Is my stairlift too narrow to fit a stairlift?
  8. Q8. How are stairlifts powered?
  9. Q9. What will happen during a powercut?
  10. Q10. How is the battery recharged?
  11. Q11. Are stairlifts easy to operate?
  12. Q12. What is the maximum weight a stairlift can carry?
  13. Q13. Are stairlifts safe?
  14. Q14. Will my staircase still be useable by others once my stairlift is fitted?
  15. Q15. How noisy are stairlifts?
  16. Q16. Are stairlifts expensive to run?
  17. Q17. Are stairlifts exempt from VAT?

How do Stairlifts work?

All stairlifts run on a track (normally aluminium) that fits directly to the treads of the stairs, and the stairlift motor pulls the stairlift along the tracks.

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How much do Stairlifts cost?

The price can vary greatly from supplier to supplier, and also depends on whether you have a curved staircase, or whether you want a new, or reconditioned stairlift. Typically straight stairlift prices can cost from £995-£2,500. Curved stairlifts can be far more expensive with prices starting at around £2,800 for a reconditioned stairlift but can increase substantially for a new curved lift. The price for a curved stairlift also varies greatly depending on the dimensions of your staircase as the rail will have to be custom made to fit your staircase.The number of extras you opt for, such as powered swivel seats etc.will also affect the cost.

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How long will I have to wait for my stairlift?

Generally, you will have to wait 1-2 weeks for a straight lift and around 2-6 weeks for a curved stairlift installation. However, some stair lift suppliers can install stairlifts more quickly, particularly in urgent cases.

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How long will the stairlift installation take?

Generally around 1-2hours for a straight stair lift and typically around 2-3hours for a curved stairlift.

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Does my stairlift come with a warranty?

The length of warranty will vary from one supplier to another but you should ensure that your stairlift comes with a minimum 12 months warranty. This is why you should always make sure you buy from an approved supplier as not all suppliers offer the same length of warranty, and not all suppliers include emergency callout if there is a problem with the stairlift. All new stairlifts and reconditioned stair lifts from stairlift suppliers come with a fully comprehensive 12 month warranty package.

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How is the stairlift fitted?

The stairlift tracks are fitted to the staircase treads using metal cleats. A typical straight staircase would have 4-5 metal cleats attached.

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Is my staircase too narrow to fit a stairlift?

Your staircase should be wider than 600mm (24 inches) in order to accommodate a stairlift.

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How are stairlifts powered?

Modern stairlifts are powered by D.C. powered motors. These are far quieter and more efficient than the older A.C. powered stirlifts.

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What will happen during a powercut?

All new stair lift are powered using Direct Current (D.C.), which will automatically charge when not in use, and will continue to work even during a power cut for up to 6-8 trips. You should always check with your stairlift supplier to ensure its D.C. powered.T

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How is the battery recharged?

Your stairlift will be cahrged through a 13 amp socket. This may need to be fitted if there isn't one near the stairlift. Some stairlift models have a continuous charging system that charges the stairlift all along the rail to ensure that it is always fully charged.

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Are stairlifts easy to operate?

Stairlifts are very easy to operate, they are controlled through a small toggle or joystick control - depending on the model you may have a choice of toggle or joystick - situated on the arm of the stairlift. To move the stairlift up or down the stairs you simply move the toggle or joystick. Your stairlift should also comes with remote controls which are useful if there are two people who use the stairlift in the house. For additional safety the stairlift cannot be activated without a key switch.

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What is the maximum weight a stairlift can carry?

This varies from model to model but most stairlifts for sale in the UK can safely carry a minimum of 18+ stone (120+ kg). There are a number of Heavy duty stairlifts that can carry weights of up to 28 stone.

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Are stairlifts safe?

All modern stairlifts have to meet very high safety specifications and come with a number of built in safety features. Some of the key safety features include: 1) Safety sensors that detect obstructions and safely bring the stairlift to a stop if there is an obstruction, 2) Lockable on/off switch which prevents others from using the stairlift, and 3) Mechanical and electrical braking systems.

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Will my staircase still be useable by others once my stairlift is fitted?

No because when not in use your stairlift will be folded and parked at either the top or bottom of the stairs.

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How noisy are stairlifts?

The new DC powered stairlifts require less voltage making them more energy efficient and very quiet.

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Are stairlifts expensive to run?

Modern stairlifts can run off as little as 24volts, and typically cost less to run than boiling a kettle.

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Are stairlifts exempt from VAT?

Anyone who is disabled or has a chronically illness will qualify for the 0% VAT rate.  If you do not qualify for the 0% rate but are over 60 then you will be eligible for the reduced 5% VAT rate. This reduced rate only applies to stairlifts in domestic circumstances. Your stairlift supplier will be able to provide you with the forms for VAT exemption and the 5% vat rate.

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Click here for further information on buying Stairlifts from approved stairlift suppliers covering your area
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Customer Testimonials

“Thank you for pulling out all the stops and getting the stairlift in ahead of schedule and at such a good price”

S Wheeler, Dover, Kent.

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Mrs G Hamer, Carshalton

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