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Last updated: 29 April 2024

Navigating Stairlift Installation: A Comprehensive Guide

  • Installing standard stairlifts is typically simpler on straight staircases, while curved or narrow stairs might necessitate tailored approaches. Contemporary stair lift models are equipped to maneuver around corners and adjust to diverse layouts, broadening their applicability.
  • The average cost of installing a stairlift usually falls within the range of £500 to £1,500. Installing a curved stairlift, for instance, may amount to approximately £2,000 to £5,000, while outdoor stairlifts might range from £2,500 to £6,000.
  • Companies like Acorn, Stannah, Handicare, Companion Stairlifts and Platinum Stairlifts provide free stairlift installation when you purchase a stairlift. 

Embarking on the journey of installing a stairlift can be a transformative experience, offering newfound freedom and accessibility within your home. Whether you're exploring options for yourself or a loved one, understanding the ins and outs of stair lift installation is essential to ensure a smooth and successful process. In this comprehensive guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know, from assessing your needs to choosing the right stair lift and navigating the installation process.

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What is the process of stairlift installation?

Installing a stairlift in your home in the UK can significantly enhance mobility, allowing individuals with limited mobility to access multiple levels of their home safely and independently. If you are wondering about how to fit a stairlift, the process of stairlift installation is systematic and typically involves the following key steps:

Initial consultation and assessment

The first step in the process is arranging an initial consultation with a stairlift provider. During this visit, a representative will assess your staircase and discuss your specific needs. This assessment will help determine the right type of stairlift (straight or curved) and any additional features that may be beneficial, such as folding footrests or swivel seats.

Measurement and quotation

Accurate measurements of your staircase will be taken to ensure the stairlift fits perfectly. The provider will consider the shape, length, and width of the staircase, as well as any obstacles such as doors or radiators. After the measurements are completed, you will receive a detailed quotation outlining the cost of the stairlift and installation.

Manufacturing (if necessary)

If your staircase requires a custom-designed stairlift, particularly for curved staircases, the manufacturing process may take a few weeks. Straight stairlifts are generally available in standard sizes and can be installed more quickly.

Installation

Installation is typically done in the following steps:

  • Installing the track along the staircase: The track is securely fixed to the treads of the stairs, not the wall. This involves drilling into the steps and using brackets to hold the track in place.
  • Mounting the chair or platform onto the track: Once the track is secured, the chair or platform component of the stairlift is attached. This part includes all the mechanical and seating components.
  • Connecting the stairlift to the electrical supply: Stairlifts require a power source to operate. Most stairlifts are battery operated but need an electrical outlet to charge the batteries. The installation will include routing the power cable discreetly along the staircase to maintain aesthetics and safety. If there's no power outlet nearby for connecting a stairlift to the electrical supply, there are a few potential solutions like getting an extension cord, or installing a new outlet.
  • Testing and calibrating the stairlift's functionality: After installation, the technician will perform a series of tests to ensure that the stairlift operates smoothly and safely. This includes checking its movement up and down the stairs, ensuring it stops at the correct positions, and testing safety features like the emergency stop button.

Demonstration and handover

Once installed, the technician will demonstrate how to use the stairlift, including how to operate it, fold it away, and what to do in case of an emergency. This ensures that the user feels comfortable and confident in operating the machine independently.

Stairlift installation requirements

  • Space: Enough clearance is needed on the staircase to install the track and for the chair to move without obstruction.
  • Structural integrity: The stairs must be in good condition to support the weight of the stairlift and its user.
  • Power supply: Proximity to an electrical outlet is required for charging the stairlift.

Electrical requirements

  • Power supply: Stairlifts are typically powered by rechargeable batteries, which are charged from a standard 240V outlet. This helps the stairlift continue to operate during a power outage.
  • Safety features: Electrical installations must comply with UK safety standards, including those related to wiring and electrical outputs.

Duration

The entire process, from consultation to installation, can vary depending on whether the stairlift is straight or custom-made for curved staircases. A straight stairlift installation might be completed in a few hours, whereas a curved stairlift could require a bespoke solution that might take a few weeks from consultation to installation.

By following these steps, stairlift installation can be a straightforward and efficient process, providing a safe and reliable solution for those needing assistance navigating their homes.

Can stairlifts be fitted to any stairs?

Stairlifts can typically be fitted to most stairs, but feasibility depends on factors such as the staircase's design and space constraints. Straight staircases typically pose fewer challenges for installation, while curved or unusually shaped stairs may require custom solutions. However, advancements in technology allow stairlifts to navigate corners, making them adaptable to a wide range of staircase configurations.

What is the stairlift cost with installation in the UK?

Stairlift installation costs in the UK typically range from £500 to £1,500 on average. Stairlift cost with installation, for a specific scenario like installing a curved, outdoor, or standing stairlift, costs can vary significantly. Curved stairlift installations might cost between £2,000 to £5,000, while outdoor stairlifts may range from £2,500 to £6,000.

The overall stairlift cost depends on several factors including the type of stairlift, the complexity of the staircase, additional features, and any preparatory work needed such as electrical wiring or structural modifications. In many cases, the installation is included in the total price of the stairlift, but it's essential to confirm this with the provider beforehand.

Can you install a stairlift yourself?

Yes, while it's technically possible to install some simpler straight stairlift models yourself, it's not advisable for most people. Companies like Stannah provide installation manuals online, but without proper training and experience, errors can occur. Considering the safety and efficiency risks, it's highly recommended to seek help from stairlift installers. Avoiding DIY ensures the stairlift is correctly installed, reducing the likelihood of accidents or malfunctions. For peace of mind and a safe installation, consider getting three free quotes from reputable stairlift companies.

Benefits of self installation

  • Cost savings: DIY installation can save money on installation fees, especially for simpler straight stairlift models.

    Disadvantages of self installation

    • Safety risks: Lack of expertise in stairlift installation can pose safety risks to both the installer and the user. Improper installation may lead to accidents or malfunctioning of the stairlift.
    • Complexity: Installing a stairlift requires knowledge of electrical wiring, structural considerations, and compliance with safety regulations. Without proper training and experience, it's easy to make errors.
    • Warranty voidance: Many manufacturers require professional installation to maintain the warranty. DIY installation may void the warranty, leaving you responsible for any repairs or replacements.
    • Time-consuming: DIY installation can be time-consuming, especially for those unfamiliar with the process. Professional installers can complete the job more efficiently.
    • Quality concerns: Professional installers have the experience and expertise to ensure the stairlift is installed correctly and operates smoothly. DIY installation may result in subpar performance or functionality.

    While DIY installation may seem appealing for cost-saving purposes, the safety risks and potential for errors make it generally advisable to seek professional installation services. Prioritizing safety and quality ensures the stairlift functions properly and provides reliable support for individuals with mobility challenges.

    Which suppliers offer free stair lift installation

    Several stairlift suppliers in the UK offer free installation as part of their services. Some of these companies include:

    • Acorn Stairlifts
    • Stannah
    • Handicare
    • Companion Stairlifts
    • Platinum Stairlifts

    To find the best deal for your needs, consider getting free stairlift quotes from different suppliers. This allows you to compare not only the cost of the stairlift but also the additional services offered, such as free installation.

    Just complete our short 30-second form, and you'll promptly receive up to 3 FREE QUOTES from installation experts in your area. This service is entirely free of charge and devoid of any obligations. Click the button below to get started!

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