Rules and Regulations Surrounding Stairlifts

Buy Stairlift East Anglia - Key Rules and Regulations

Stairlifts are a vital lifeline for many people with mobility issues; they allow them to live a more independent lifestyle and help them avoid relying on friends and family too much.

However, before you have one installed, there are a few rules and regulations which are worth bearing in mind – including some which have been introduced comparatively recently. Here Ransome Mobility, who can help if you are looking to buy a stairlift in East Anglia, outline some of the key pieces of legislation surrounding this type of mobility aid.


Planning Permissions

You shouldn’t need planning permission before installing a stairlift – as long as it isn’t altering the structural integrity of the building (and most don’t).

If your stairlift is being installed in a listed building, then it might be an issue because there are restrictions in place aimed at preserving the architectural and historic importance of the structure. Equally, if a stairlift is not feasible and you opt for an alternative such as a platform lift, you may need to cut a hole in a ceiling and floor which is more likely to affect the structural integrity of your property.

In cases like these it may be worth contacting the local planning authority or council well in advance – as this could add time (and money) to the installation process that you may not have originally accounted for.


Public or Shared Buildings

Special rules apply to stairlifts being installed in public or shared buildings. These include having a dedicated power point, which isn’t used for anything else. There must also be a key switch to avoid any unauthorised use of the stairlift.

The stairlift usually needs to be tested and inspected more frequently as those in public buildings usually get much more use than in domestic properties. For more details about public and commercial stairlifts in Cambridge, Suffolk and the rest of East Anglia, check out our previous blog post here.


New Regulations

There are some new regulations regarding stairlifts which came into force quite recently in April 2023.

These mean that new stairlifts must have an emergency stop button that is easily accessible to the user in case of an emergency. Manufacturers should also ensure that their new products can be fitted with an optional call device so that the user can contact someone to help them in an emergency. Additionally, new stairlifts must have battery backup systems to ensure that they can continue to operate in the event of a power outage.

These additional regulations are all part of the new European Standard EN 81-40:2020, which also applies in the UK (with a BS prefix).


New Build Regulations

In some cases, it has been made easier to have stairlifts installed due to new build regulations. Since 2015, stairs in all newly constructed properties must be at least 850mm wide to allow for the potential future addition of a stairlift.

This is enshrined in Part M of the Building Regulations of 2015 – and these (in Part P) also mention the need for any stairlift to comply with electrical safety legislation, so that any product won’t represent a fire safety hazard.


Buy a Stairlift in East Anglia from Ransome Mobility

You also need to make sure that your stairlift is put in place by a qualified and experienced installer – who is familiar with the specific requirements for stairlifts, including the British Standard for stairlifts (BS 5776:1996), which specifies safety requirements for powered stairlifts.

This is where Ransome Mobility come in, as we have many years of experience in installing straight and curved stairlifts in a variety of locations, including commercial stairlifts in Cambridge and the rest of East Anglia, and we will be able to advise you on any relevant legislation and if it affects the installation of your stairlift.

At Ransome, we stock a range of the leading stairlift brand names, including Minivator and Homeglide. For a full list of all the stairlifts which we supply to customers across East Anglia click here.

You can also call us on 01473 727263 and we will be happy to help with any queries. The wheelchair lifts which we stock can be found here.

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