Are you worried about the safety of installing a complicated residential wheelchair lift? Even with the assistance of experienced installers and maintenance professionals, it’s up to the owner of the lift to ensure all occupants use the lift safely and correctly. Thankfully, there are a few helpful wheelchair lift features that can make the machine even safer to use – whether in an emergency, or during daily use.
Top Security Features for In-Home Wheelchair Lifts
1. Access Lock
This first feature is only necessary in a few specific situations, but if those situations are present, these security features are invaluable. Homes with small children (and homes that play host to visiting children) should have a key-protected door. The same applies to outdoor wheelchair lifts. If memory loss is a concern, a lock may be an appropriate addition just in case the occupant does eventually lose the ability to operate the machine safely.
2. Adequate Weight Limit
The weight limit may seem obvious at first, but it’s not as simple as adding the assistant’s weight plus the weight of the occupant and wheelchair. You must also consider any potential wheelchair upgrades – a mobility scooter weighs far more than a manual wheelchair, and a power wheelchair weighs far more than a manual. This won’t make a difference for a high end wheelchair elevator, but smaller self-contained lifts sometimes present very limited small weight restrictions.
3. Backup Operation System
You will definitely need a reliable and regularly maintained battery backup system, but the battery backup isn’t the end of the story. You’ll also need a way to operate the machine manually – sometimes this option is included standard, but sometimes you have to ask for it and pay a little extra. Make sure that you have your manual backup system maintained just as regularly as the main power system and the backup batteries. It’s easy to forget about these safety measures until you need them and find them to be in need of maintenance.
Be confident about your accessibility investments. With maintenance, any potential problems will become immediately apparent. Residential elevators and wheelchair lifts are just as safe and reliable as those in a commercial setting are – but it’s up to you to make sure your lift stays that way.
If you ever want to know about the available safety features and recommended lift maintenance procedures, just give the manufacturer of your machine a call. They’ll direct you to the nearest accessible service technician to retrofit or inspect your lift.