What is the difference between a vertical lift and an elevator?
Savaria makes vertical platform lifts that carry one person and a wheelchair typically from one point to a second point (called a 2-stop). That can be from the ground or driveway to an elevated deck or porch outside the home (called a “porch lift” or “deck lift”). A vertical lift can also be installed inside the home, most often inside a hoistway that is built by a contractor. Although similar to an elevator, the vertical lift uses constant press operation – so the user must press the button continuously to make the lift move. Releasing the button stops the lift.
A home elevator carries multiple people with a higher capacity (up to 1000 lb / 454 kg) and features automatic operation (one touch of a button and the elevator operates). A home elevator is always installed in a hoistway and cannot be installed outdoors.
When is an elevator the best solution?
If you have the space and want a fully automatic solution that can handle a higher capacity, an elevator is a wise choice. Home elevators can be configured to be fully automatic, including automatic doors, and are available in a variety of finishes to complement your home’s decor.
A home elevator is a wise choice if you require greater than 23 ft of travel (the maximum for a wheelchair lift) or more than 4 stops. A home elevator will also be seen as an added value to your property while a wheelchair lift likely will not.
How does a through-the-floor lift work?
The Savaria Telecab is an accessibility lift that operates without the requirement of a enclosed hoistway. Instead, a floor cut-out is created in the ceiling to allow the lift to travel to the second level. When the lift lowers, the cut out is safely covered with a floor cover. The Telecab is a good solution for people who need to travel 2 stops (one level to the next) yet a traditional home elevator cannot be installed due to space or construction constraints. A person with mobility device can be carried up to a 845 lb capacity with a Savaria Telecab17.
Can I move my stairlift or wheelchair lift from one home to another?
Most mobility products are customized to some extent to fit the space that they are installed in. For this reason, most of the time relocation of a lift is not possible. Straight stairlifts and inclined platform lifts may be able to be moved, but curved lifts are custom-made to the specific angle of the stairs and therefore cannot be re-installed in a different location. Vertical platform lifts are customized to the specific height of travel needed, so often cannot be moved. Before buying a used lift, check to see if it can be installed in a new location.
Can we install a stairlift in our place of worship, business, etc.?
Any place that is not a private home is considered a commercial application in most jurisdictions. Commercial installations include applications such as a bed and breakfast, a retirement home, a church, or group home. Adding a stairlift can be a great addition to a commercial building, when allowed, but it will not make the building accessible. Both accessibility code ADA and A117.1 require lifts to have a certain platform size depending on their configuration. Your local Savaria commercial dealer will know how to comply with local code requirements including whether the lift requires a permit or inspection process. See the commercial accessibility section to learn more about suitable products.
Your local Savaria dealer can provide you an accurate quote for equipment and the installation. This cost varies greatly depending upon the type of equipment needed, the work to be done in your home to accommodate the lift and any custom options you may wish to add.
Is there funding to pay for lifts?
Your local Savaria dealer is the best resource to find out about any available programs that will help cover the costs of your lift. We can put you in touch with the dealer nearest you.