For those of use who are able to walk around on our own, it’s difficult to imagine the challenges facing those with a disability. We take for granted the simple act of traveling by car. Unfortunately for those with a disability, getting in and out of their vehicle is not their only challenge. Storing the wheelchair in their car becomes an immediate concern.
For those with limited mobility, and a van, wheelchair lifts and ramps help to ease wheel chairs in and out of your vehicle. This will increase your freedom, allowing you to go out more, and enjoy more of life’s opportunities. You can store your wheelchair by attaching it to the ramp. The ramp that you choose may also be easily foldable and allow you to store it safely inside your van while you are away from the vehicle.
Depending on your needs, a manual or power wheelchair lift will give you the assistance you are looking for. Prices start between $350-$450, and in some cases, may be covered by your medical insurance plan.
Manual wheelchair lifts normally work with any folding manual wheelchair and require a Class I hitch. The spring loaded platforms on many of these models helps to make lifting the wheelchair easier. The weight capacity can differ from model to model, so it’s important to do some research.
Power wheelchair lifts literally lift your wheelchair into your vehicle. Although more expensive than their manual counterparts, the power lift can handle heavier types of wheelchairs, and for the most part, is easier to use.
When choosing a wheel chair lift, make sure that you determine that you are choosing a model suitable for your chair. There are many different sizes and models of lifts that will accommodate different styles of chairs, so just make sure that your chair is suitable for the lift.
Another feature to note when purchasing your chair lift is weight. Different lifts will hold various weights. Typical weights range from 300-500 pounds, so choose a lift that will handle your needs best.
Wheelchair Lifts: Inside and Outside Loading and Options
Wheelchair lifts come in both inside and outside loading models. The inside models will fit inside trunks and when they are not in use will disassemble for easy storage. You should determine your lift based upon your basic preference and choice. Whether you purchase an inside or outside loading, you should ensure that the model you purchase comes with a warranty.
Purchasing a wheelchair lift can be done through financing if you want to purchase a brand new one, or you may find great savings by searching for a used one. Remember, as mentioned earlier, to see if your purchase can be covered under your insurance.
Another option available is to have your vehicle or van modified by a professional company to accommodate your wheelchair. While expensive, it does provide a perfect solution for someone who wants to travel, and is not going to let their disability hold them back!
Wheelchair Lift: Construction
Your wheelchair lift needs to be sturdy and the material of choice is solid aluminum, though you may also purchase a solid steel model as well. Your lift should also be rust proof, easy to install, and require little or no maintenance. Make sure that you have an experienced professional install your lift, this is too important to be left to “want to be” handymen. As soon as you begin to think there may be a problem with your lift, have a professional come and look at it right away. Make sure to keep all warranty and guarantee paperwork, in case there is a problem with your lift.
Wheelchair Ramps: Who Needs Stairs
Stairs have always provided a challenge to disabled persons and office buildings often were never built to accommodate someone with a wheelchair. Fortunately, that is no longer a worry with portable wheelchair ramps.
Many of these ramps can be extended to reach 3 meters (9ft) and can be used to conquer stairs or to assist with getting into a van. An added bonus is that many of the wheelchair ramps that are designed today are lightweight and can be carried literally anywhere and stored anywhere.
Life is too short not to be enjoyed! There are plenty of solutions available to disabled persons to allow them the mobility they deserve. Get out there and enjoy life to its fullest.