Both indoor and outdoor lifts can make the world of a difference to a person’s ease of mobility and general quality of life. Unfortunately, whilst a great addition to your home in theory, they might not always be the most practical for all homes. In some homes, outdoor lifts fit like a glove, with minimal hassle or stress. For others, indoor lifts might be the best option – if not the only option.
What are the main types of lifts installed in a home?
There are two main types of lifts that are used on residential lots. The first is a standard home lift which operates much like the standard lifts you’ll find on commercial lots like shopping malls, hotels and tall office buildings. These are most appropriate in smaller spaces or where stairs are not found. They’re also most useful for homes with more than two floors.
The second type is a stairlift. These are lifts that are attached to stairs, operating in a diagonal direction. These are most appropriate for homes with existing stairs, or for those looking to add stairs to their home. Naturally, these take up the same amount of space as the stairs do, with the only addition being a small but powerful chair which is attached to the wall or railing.
So, which type of lift can be installed outside?
The good news is that both types of lifts can be installed outside, although they will still need to be covered as they work electronically. Most home lifts come with a built-in cover. Generally, a good quality lift of any kind will be weatherproof to some degree, however, a roof cover will help to prolong the lifespan of your lift by sheltering it (and you) from any harsh weather.
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If you don’t already have additional entrances for your lift, keep in mind that outdoor lifts require entrances to be installed on both sides of them. Depending on your situation, this could mean having to break through existing walls to add them.
So now that I know all about lifts, which one is the right fit for my home?
As mentioned briefly before, certain things like the amount of space available will have a lot of impact on whether or not it will be possible to install an outdoor lift on your property.
As with all homes, this will vary greatly depending on your situation. For example, If you don’t already have stairs or a covered area outside, you’ll need the available funding and space to install them. This area or space also has to be levelled, so bear that in mind if you’re looking to avoid any additional costs or live in a rocky or mountainous area.
Stairlifts are easily installed onto most types of ramps or stairs. If your home has existing outdoor stairs, you’ll likely only have to consider the addition of some form of roof covering. If adding covering to your home works out to be more costly than adding entrances, you might want to go with the home lift option.
Should I consider an indoor lift?
Once again, this really depends on your situation. However, it’s good to know that with a reliable company, most indoor and outdoor lifts can be installed easily and efficiently. In addition, they really don’t take up that much extra space, especially if you already have stairs.
If you do go the indoor route, make sure that you have clear entranways and exits. This way, those using the home lift have a safe passageway with ample space to get off or out of the lift, especially those in wheelchairs.