Do You Need One and What’s Involved?

If you find using the staircase a struggle, a stairlift installation might be your key to independence in the home. A stairlift installation means you don’t have to take drastic measures such as moving to alternative accommodation or shifting the bedroom downstairs. That’s because a stairlift will give you access to all floors of your property. Stairlifts can be battery powered, or mains operated and are used to glide people and wheelchairs smoothly and easily up and down stairs. Here at Ransome Mobility, we provide stairlift installations for all types of staircases and stock an excellent selection of straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts.

If you are considering a stairlift installation for yourself, or one of your relatives, there are so many different models to choose from. These include Simplicity, Home Adapt, Freelift, Access BDD and Platinum, to name a few. Here at Ransome Mobility, we are not tied to any particular manufacturer, so we can talk through the options available and give full, independent advice. Contact us to arrange a free no-obligation home visit and one of our stairlift installation experts will be happy to help guide you through the range of curved stairlifts or straight stairlifts available.

Ransome Mobility Solutions’ range include new models, refurbished stairlifts and stairlift rentals to choose from. If you are not sure whether a stairlift is right for you, here is our simple guide to why people choose a stairlift and how they can help. We will also look at what a stairlift installation involves.

Do You Need a Stairlift?

There are many different reasons why people need a stairlift installation, whether on a temporary or permanent basis. Here are some of the reasons:

Age

As we get older our joints and muscles don’t work as well as they used to. This means activities such as climbing up and downstairs can become harder. We may develop problems with our knees, hips or ankles which makes walking or taking the stairs difficult. Arthritis and joint pain are common age-related problems. Muscle weaknesses, disease and neurological problems can also affect mobility to a lesser or greater extent. If you or a relative want to remain in their own home but the stairs presents a problem, a stairlift installation is something to consider. Stairlifts can be installed in most properties and models can be chosen to suit a person’s individual requirements.

Following an Accident

A stairlift is not only for the elderly. It can be installed temporarily or permanently to help a person deal with reduced mobility following an accident. Coming home from hospital for the first time and coping with the aftermath of an accident will come as a massive shock, both mentally and physically. A stairlift will not only provide a physical aid, assisting someone up and down stairs, but it also helps a person emotionally. It allows free movement around the home, which can help in a small way as they adjust to changes.

In cases where a stairlift is only required on a temporary basis, stairlift rental may be the most cost effective option. However it is important to note that stairlift rental is only available for homes that require straight stairlifts.

Illness

Moving up and down stairs can be difficult or impossible for people with an illness or degenerative condition, and a stairlift can therefore be life changing, giving them back some independence. There are many different types of illnesses that could affect a person’s mobility such as M.E, Multiple Sclerosis, Arthritis and Parkinsons Disease, and a stairlift can be installed either temporarily or permanently to help with this. Stairlifts come with a range of features to suit varying mobility problems and Ransome Mobility will assist you in choosing the right stairlift to suit your circumstances both now and as they develop.

Disability

Stairlifts also assist people who have a disability to enjoy greater freedom and independence in the home. There are a wide range of different curved stairlifts and straight stairlifts with options and extras, to suit your requirements. These can include a perch for people who have difficulties bending their knees, easy to use toggles for those who have limited movement in their hands and heavy duty stair-lifts for heavier passengers. Most stairlifts have remote controls which can also be operated by a carer and are suitable for multi-users in the home.

The Process of Stairlift Installation

Stairlift installation is a fairly simple process and the amount of time it takes from start to finish will vary depending on whether you have a curved or straight stairlift. From the initial consultation the entire process can be as short as three days for straight stairlifts to up to 2-4 weeks for a curved stairlift as these have to be individually made to suit the stairs.

The first step is to call Ransome Mobility on 0844 8569790 to arrange for a consultation and a free, no obligation quotation. One of our experts will visit you at your home and talk through the various options and assess whether a straight or curved stairlift is more suitable. Straight stairlifts can be fitted relatively quickly and easily and can be bought new, reconditioned or rented. With a rented stairlift you still get the same level of service as a brand new stairlift. Curved stairlifts are manufactured to suit an individual staircase to accommodate its bends or curves.

A new stairlift from Ransome Mobility is supported by an unmatched after sales service – available 365 days a year. Alternatively if you cannot afford an upfront cost, or only require a stairlift for a short period then a rental stairlift may be a better option. Another option is to buy a reconditioned stairlift where available although we only have limited options available in our reconditioned range. These are pre-owned stairlifts, which have been fully serviced and restored and are suitable for curved or straight staircases. They are as safe and reliable as a brand new models, but cost less, and can be bought with a comprehensive warranty packages. The only downside is that you do not have as much choice when buying a reconditioned model. Reconditioned stairlifts generally come with a six – 12 month warranty, depending on the age of the stairlift.

Once you have decided on your stairlift, the stairlift installation process will be carried out by one of our fully-trained, professional engineers. A stairlift should only be installed by an expert to ensure complete safety for the user. The first step they will take is to make sure the stairs are sturdy and in good condition, so that they can carry the extra weight from the stairlift and passenger. This is because the rail, or track is fitted to the stair treads (the top of the stair) and not the wall, to keep alterations to a minimum.

The rail can be attached to either the interior or exterior of the track, depending on what will work best for a particular staircase. The rail comes in lots of different sections which are connected together when the stairlift is installed. It is attached to brackets fixed to the stair tread and the stairlift will either be supported by the stairs or completely by the brackets.

Once the motor is fitted and the seat attached, the stairlift will be tested to make sure it is fitted correctly and is in good working order. In most cases stairlifts take two to three hours to install. Curved stairlifts take longer as they vary on the type of stairs and the particular size of the bend. Installation can take as little as four hours, or up to a day if a staircase is particularly tricky or challenging.

Stairlift Installation – contact us now to discuss your requirements >
Or click here to view our range of Straight Stairlifts and Curved Stairlifts >

Most people have a good idea how stairlifts can help them get up and downstairs inside their home. However, many people don’t realise that stairlifts can be also useful outside the home too.

Ransome Mobility is an independent supplier of straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts to customers in East Anglia, Hertfordshire and Northamptonshire. We supply and install stairlifts to help customers regain their independence, not only indoors, but outdoors too, so they can have ready access to all areas of their property.

Uses for Outdoor Straight Stairlifts and Curved Stairlifts

If you have limited mobility and have steep steps to the back or front door of your property, getting to and from your home can prove tricky. Tasks such as the weekly shop, or simply getting out and about to visit friends or family, can become almost impossible.

In these cases it can mean making the decision to sell the family home. However, there are other options available so you can regain your independence and get to and from your property at your leisure.

All weather straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts provide a solution to outdoor steps and means that you can get out and about without having to rely on others. Outdoor straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts can be used all year round, whatever the weather, and their installation has proved life-changing for many of our customers.

Weatherproof stairlifts are not only used for people with steps up to their house entrance, but can also be used where there is a staircase leading to the garden or basement.

It is also possible to install external stairlifts for those with multi-level gardens (to give you full use of all the terraces) and to install outdoor stairlifts for properties that have steep ramps or slopes that may be difficult to walk up.

When it comes to choosing an outdoor stairlift, just as you would for an indoor stairlift you will need to think about which stairlift is more suitable. Straight stairlifts are more common and run along a straight rail. Curved outdoor stairlifts, however, are suitable for outside stairs with either a bend or a curve. Curved stairlifts are more expensive than straight stairlifts as they have to be custom made to suit individual staircases. This also means that the waiting times are longer than the standard straight stairlifts.

How Are Outdoor Stairlifts Different to Indoor Stairlifts?

Outdoor stairlifts work in exactly the same way as indoor stairlifts and are designed with comfort, safety and reliability in mind. They are hardier models than the indoor versions and come with weather proof components designed for use in all seasons.

Most come with a removable waterproof cover to protect the seat, arms and footrest, when the device is not in use. This keeps the seat dry and clean at all times and provides added comfort.

Outdoor stairlifts are available with all the additional features that you would expect to see with indoor stairlifts, such as padded seats, seat belts, perches (optional extra) and swivel seats.

External stairlifts are truly life-changing: they give customers additional freedom as they are able to regain their independence. They provide complete peace of mind as it means steps can be negotiated safely and with ease, whatever the weather or time of year.

Which Models are Suitable for Outdoor Use?

There are a variety of models suitable for open air use and as an independent supplier we are committed to providing our customers with the most effective and highest quality products.

We supply waterproof Minivator 1000 straight stairlifts and Minivator 2000 curved stairlifts for outdoor use. The seat is covered with UV protected slate grey upholstery – to protect it from fading – and it also has a waterproof seat cover to provide protection whatever the weather.

Minivator outdoor stairlifts can carry up to 25 stone and are hardy enough to withstand the extreme British weather. The stairlift is designed to last many years as all the main components are plated to make the unit rust proof. They also come with special batteries that will charge even when the temperature plummets.

Some of the features of the Minivator include a remote control which can also be used in outdoor conditions. The seat height is fully adjustable and the stairlift benefits from Minivator’s unique toggle control that needs only the minimum amount pressure for use. Minivator stairlifts are protected by a key switch, to prevent them being used without permission from the owner.

Straight Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >
Curved Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >

Stairlifts are life changing. They open up new horizons for those with temporary or permanent mobility problems caused either by an illness, accident or old age. Stairlifts provide greater freedom for people and make all parts of the home accessible. The installation of a straight stairlift or curved stairlift will enable a user to easily move up and down stairs once more, preventing the need to move out of the family home.

Whatever a person’s home situation or mobility requirements, there are a wide range of straight stairlifts or curved stairlifts to suit different situations. This article will answer some of the most common queries from people who are looking to buy one for their home or business.

Straight Stairlift or Curved Stairlift?

Straight stairlifts are suitable for homes with a straight staircase and curved stairlifts are used in properties that have a bend or curve in the stairs. In some incidences curved staircases can also be used for spiral staircases.

Budget Stairlift Options

Straight stairlifts are available brand new and fitted from £999.

Minivator have a good reputation in the industry and their Simplicity Stairlift offers simple, no frills, value for money. Their range includes the Simplicity and Simplicity Plus, which are good all round safe and effective stairlifts.

The Homeglide is also another cost-effective option if you require a straight stairlift. It is simple to operate and was designed in conjunction with ergonomic experts, stairlift owners and international user focus groups. It has an easy joystick option and has a smooth stop and start action.

Another option for those on a tight budget is to have a rented stairlift installed. This is only available for customers with straight staircases as it is not possible to rent a curved staircase due to their bespoke design. If you choose to rent, you will usually pay a small installation charge (about £50) and after that a monthly rental fee.

If you have a curved staircase, it is worth bearing in mind that as curved stairlifts are unique to a particular staircase, so they are generally more expensive to install than straight stairlifts. In some incidences two straight stairlifts may provide an alternative option and may be cheaper than a single, curved staircase but it depends on the type of stairs you have.

Another good budget stairlift option is to opt for a re-conditioned or second-hand stairlift. These are previously owned models that have been bought by a manufacturer and refurbished to be used again. These recycled stairlifts can be used for straight or curved staircases but a new rail will need to be fitted if you have a curved staircase.

Stairlifts For Rented Properties

All stairlifts can be fitted in rented properties as they can simply be removed when you move. If you have a straight staircase, it may work out cheaper to rent a stairlift if it is likely to be for short term use.

Renting a stairlift is also ideal if you cannot afford the cost of brand new one. If there are any maintenance issues with your rental you can expect the same level of service as with a new stairlift and the stairlift rental company will deal with any concerns.

Stairlifts For Users With Very Limited Mobility

There are a number of different designs and models of stairlift and it is best to consult with us to find out which one is best for you. Here is a guide to some of the stairlift features that assist users with very limited mobility.

Toggles and Joysticks: Easy to use toggles and joysticks are suitable for people with limited dexterity in their hands, such as the Simplicity and Simplicity Plus stairlift. Some ranges come with a choice of three joysticks, such as the Homeglide and Homeglide Extra.

Perch: If you have difficulty bending your knees, it is worth considering a perch option, rather than a seat. Stairlifts with a perch option include the Minivator 1000Minivator 950Simplicity Plus and the Flow. The Van Gogh can travel downwards at a 45 degree angle so it is ideal for those with limited flexibility in their knees.

Powered Options: If you have difficulty bending, some stairlifts have the choice of a powered foot-rest riser which means that you do not have to bend down to fold the footrest up manually. Other powered options available on some models include a swivel seat which turns the seat automatically to ensure easier mounting and dismounting. A powered hinged track is used to clear hallways and doors.

Stairlifts For Heavy Passengers

Stairlifts have a number of features to ensure a passenger’s safety and comfort and there are models available to support heavier passengers. The Elite Straight and Elite Curve Stairlift offers a generous seat size and a weight capacity of up to 30 stone. The Minivator Straight Stairlift model has a heavy weight option for passengers of up to 35 stone.

Stairlifts for Very Narrow Stairs or Spiral Staircases

The Van Gogh Stairlift has an ultra slim line design that allows for ample space for other stair users. It is suitable for very narrow staircases and works for many complicated and steep staircases and has a variety of rail design options.

The Flow 2 Stairlift has a neat and slim rail design and is ideal for those with an unusual shaped staircase or those with slender stairs. It is available with the option of an Advanced Ride Monitoring System, which turns the chair as it moves which is perfect for homes with narrow staircases. It can be used on stairs as narrow as 61 cms. It can also be used on spiral staircases.

Your Choice of Model

For help and advice on choosing the right stairlift, contact Ransome Mobility. We are an independent stairlift supplier, so whether you want a straight, curved, reconditioned or rental stairlift, we can help you find the right one to suit your requirements.

Straight Stairlifts – click here to view our full range >
Curved Stairlifts – click here to view our full range >

Straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts offer valuable independence in the home as they give householders access to all floors. Ransome Mobility sell a wide range from leading manufacturers such as Minivator, Freelift, Home Adapt and Access BDD. In addition, Ransome Mobility sell reconditioned straight stairlifts and provide stairlift rental.

For straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts – click here to browse our complete range >

Ransome Mobility is an independent stairlift supplier. This means we are not tied to any one manufacturer and so will recommend the best stairlift to suit a customer’s particular requirements.

Here we review and compare leading makes of straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts.

Simplicity

The Simplicity Straight Stairlift is safe, comfortable and offers good value for money. It has a toggle feature which is simple to operate even for those with limited mobility in their hands or arthritic fingers. Just point the toggle in the direction you want to go and the chair will take you there. The foldaway seat, arms and footplate comes as standard and is a great space saver.

Pros

  • Offers great value for money
  • Easy to use toggle control
  • Foldaway seat, arms and footrest
  • Two remote controls
  • Continuous charge point so batteries will charge in any position
  • Manually operated foot rest and swivel seat Key switch
  • Compatible with a powered track or manual hinge to clear doors and hallways

Cons

  • It is a simple model without some of the enhanced features that other models provide

Simplicity Plus

The Simplicity Plus Straight Stairlift offers a simple and effective way to get up and down stairs. It features the easy to use toggle control and offers additional feature options such as a powered swivel seat, powered footrest riser, perch option and manual hinged or slide track to clear hallways and doors.

Pros

  • Continuous charge
  • Choice of manual or powered folding footplate and swivel options
  • Retractable seatbelt
  • Simple to use left or right hand toggle
  • Two remote controls
  • Fully adjustable seat height
  • Key switch
  • Compatible with slide track or manual hinge track

Cons

  • It can only be used on straight staircases
  • It can only be used by people who weigh up to 19 stone

Minivator 2000 Curved

The Minivator Curved stairlift is a reliable, easy to use stairlift with a simple toggle control which can be placed to suit left or right hand users. It has two remote controls and a key switch to prevent unauthorised use. The foldaway seat, arms and footrest helps save on space.

Pros

  • Can be used on a tight internal bend
  • Has a perch option
  • Can be supplied in a range of colours to suit your decor
  • It can be installed internally or externally on your stairs to enable the best use of space.
  • Manual swivel seat for easy dismounting
  • Twin rail system sits snugly to the wall
  • Safety feature to stop it going over the recommended speed
  • Automatic hinge option

Cons

  • Twin rail system – maybe a little more cumbersome than other lifts with a single rail track

Minivator 1000 Straight Stairlift

Minivator stairlifts have a good reputation in the industry and this is a good all round choice for a straight stairlift. It has the simple to use toggle which is suitable even for people with limited dexterity. It also has a fully adjustable seat height and can be operated by more than one person as it has two remote controls.

Pros

  • Top of the range Minivator straight stairlift model
  • Sleek and slim line with ultra slim folding unit
  • Hidden track
  • Has a weather-proof version for outdoor use
  • Option of manual or powered swivel seat
  • Safety key switch
  • Charges anywhere along the rail
  • Available with a perch option
  • Option of a power hinged track
  • User weight up to 21.5 stone (although heavy duty option for up to 25 stone available)

Cons

  • More expensive than other more basic models

Homeadapt Elite Straight stairlift

This is classically designed stair lift which blends perfectly with your home. The rail is attached to the steps rather than the walls to save on space. It is available with a range of optional extras such as a generous seat capacity. To make it easier to get on and off, the chair can turn the corner at the top or bottom of the stairs.

Pros

  • Good for staircases where space is at a premium
  • Generous seat size
  • Weight capacity of up to 30 stone
  • Options of a powered swivel seat and extra large seat.
  • Mid park and charge station so user can leave the chair on the landing
  • Suitable for homes with more than one storey
  • Safe and reliable ride.
  • Visually coded diagnostic panel

Cons

  • Does not charge anywhere along the rail
  • More expensive than other straight strairlifts

Homeadapt Elite Curved Rail

The Homeadapt Elite Curved offers a safe and easy glide up and down stairs and around corners or curves. The rail is attached to the steps rather than the walls so it saves on space and can be installed as close as 178 mm to the wall in your home. It is suitable for homes with more than one storey.

Pros

  • Good for staircases where space is at a premium
  • Generous seat size and weight capacity of up to 30 stone
  • Visually coded diagnostic panel to make maintenance easier
  • Options include powered swivel seat and linked footrest
  • Compatible with a powered hinge track if necessary
  • Simple to use toggle operating switch
  • Two remote controls
  • Comfortable ride

Cons

  • More expensive than other curved stair lifts due to its load capacity

Van Gogh Curved Stairlift

This model runs almost silently and has an attractive slim line design that allows for ample space for other stair users. It features a simple to operate joystick control for left or right handed users and is built for even the most complicated of stairs. The lift can travel downwards at 45 degree angle to make it easier for those with limited flexibility in their knees

Pros

  • Suitable for narrow staircases
  • Works for many complicated and steep staircases and has a variety of rail design options
  • Ideal for people who have difficulty bending their knees
  • Comfortable and slim line design
  • Simple to operate joystick
  • Fits to internal or external bend of stairs
  • Independent key switch
  • Two remote controls

Cons

  • Lead time is a little longer than some other models

Flow 2 Staircase

This is a great stairlift for people who have unusual shaped staircases or those with narrow stairs or stairs with more than one landing. Neat and slim rail design and has an easy to operate joystick which can also act as a safety key switch. Additional feature options include the advanced ride monitoring system which turns the chair as it moves and is suitable for narrow staircases.

Pros

  • Slender and discreet
  • Can be used on straight spiral and other difficult staircases
  • Can be used for stairs as narrow as 61 cms
  • Option of Advanced Ride Monitoring System
  • ‘Drop nose option’ so it does not block doors at the bottom of the stairs
  • Choice of three joysticks
  • Joystick can also act as a key switch
  • Battery powered
  • Obstruction sensors

Cons

  • Lead time is a little longer than some other models

Homeglide Straight Stairlift

This is an attractive, easy to use and cost effective stairlift designed in conjunction with ergonomic experts, stairlift owners and international user focus groups. It is easy to operate, discreet and simple to install. It comes with the option of a power hinged track, so it does not get in the way of a door or passageway.

Pros

  • Two remote control handsets
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Weight capacity up to 21.5 stone
  • Simple to operate joystick for left or right hand users (choice of three options)
  • Joystick also used as a key switch
  • Seat to footrest link available
  • Option of a manual or powered swivel seat to make it easier to get on and off
  • Pressure sensitive edging for automatic stop in even of obstruction

Cons

  • One choice of seat colour

Homeglide Extra Straight Stairlift

Winner of the Rehacare Design Awards 2008/2009 for the innovation in stairlift design, This is an attractive stairlift with all the benefits of the Home Glide straight rail but with additional options. It offers greater comfort and security with curved arm rests that snugly fit around the body during movement. It also features an additional weight capacity of up to 23 stone.

Pros

  • Powered swivel seat
  • 23 stone weight capacity
  • Linked foot rest
  • Choice of six colour upholstery choices
  • Low footrest height to make mounting and dismounting easier
  • Three choices of joystick which also works as a key switch
  • Two remote controls
  • Battery operated

Cons

  • Charges at the bottom or top of the rail – but not anywhere along the rail

Platinum Curved Stairlift

The Platinum Curve Stairlift offers quick installation and delivery to avoid lengthy waiting times. It is a modern stairlift design which is ideal for most curved staircases and accommodates bends and landing. It has a built in safety brake and pressure sensors that stop the lift if it meets and obstruction.

Pros

  • Fast installation and low cost stairlift
  • Battery back-up so can be used in event of a power cut
  • Smooth, quiet and comfortable ride
  • Key switch
  • Easy to use joystick and remote control to call the lift
  • Swivel seat
  • Footrest
  • Fully adjustable seat height

Cons

  • Twin rail system – maybe a little more cumbersome than other lifts with a single rail track

About Ransome Mobility

Ransome Mobility is a family run company and our clients include private individuals as well as healthcare professionals, housing associations and social care services. We have years of experience in the mobility industry and offer high standards of customer service. As an independent company we are not tied to any one particular product or manufacturer, so our service is designed specifically with your needs in mind.

Does using the stairs present a problem? A stairlift can improve a person’s quality of life because they provide much greater independence. Ransome Mobility Solutions is a leading supplier of stairlifts and sells a wide range of straight and curved stairlifts to customers in in Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire and London. We are based in Suffolk, East Anglia.

Buying a stairlift provides significant benefits to the elderly or those with mobility problems, which we will explain below.

Overcome the challenges of stairs

So how does a stairlift work? A stairlift is essentially a chair which moves on an aluminium track, powered by hydraulics or an electric motor. The passenger sits on the chair and controls its movement so they can safely and comfortably transport themselves up and down the stairs, without assistance from another person.

A stairlift has many features to make it easy to operate, even for someone with very limited mobility. Easy toggle controls can be used even by someone with arthritic fingers, or with limited mobility in their hands. A toggle can be fitted to either side of the chair and the user can simply point the toggle in the direction they want the chair to go. It also has a remote control option for a carer to use.

Another feature is the manual or powered swivel seat, for easy mounting or dismounting. A powered swivel seat is especially useful for customers with poor upper body strength or arm mobility.

A powered foot rest riser means the customer does not have to bend down to manually fold the foot plate up when they want to clear the access for other users. Instead it is raised by a switch on the arm or linked into the folding seat.

For those who only have limited use of their knees and cannot bend them to use a seated stairlift, there is a perch option available. Perch options are also useful for homes with narrow staircases.

If you have steps down to your garden and want easy access to outside, there are weather proof stairlifts. We also supply heavy-duty stairlifts which can support people who weigh up to 30 stone.

Enjoy your home for longer

Stairlifts make a huge difference to the lives of millions of people worldwide. A stairlift gives a home owner greater independence as it provides them with access to all areas of their property. It means customers can stay in their family home without the stress of uprooting and moving to alternative accommodation, such as a bungalow.

A stairlift can be quick to install for all but the most demanding of staircases. In the most instances, a stairlift can take just two to three hours to install. The stairlift is attached to the stairs and landing (not the walls) and in most cases is installed with the minimum of disruption. Once your stairlift is up and running, our expert engineers will test it fully and talk you through exactly how to use it.

We also offer an unmatched after care service, for added peace of mind. Our trained team is available 24/7, so there is always someone on hand every day of the year.

Whether straight or curved, stairlifts are designed to suit all staircases – even spiral staircases and we even sell outdoor staircases. Curved stairlifts are generally more expensive than straight stairlifts as they are manufactured made-to-measure to accommodate the length of the staircase and angle of the curve.

Recover your freedom following an accident

If ability has been impaired following an accident, it can be particularly challenging for a person to come to terms with what has happened. They may have to adapt from being fully mobile, to having to rely on other people, in a very short space of time. The installation of a straight stairlift or a curved stairlift, depending on the staircase, can restore a person’s freedom and allow them to get on with their life as much as possible.

Make your workplace DDA compliant

The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) is designed to protect people with disabilities against discrimination. It was implemented by the government in three phases and applies to people in the working environment and as well as those using a service or facility – such as a library or a further or higher education establishment. It also protects those who are visually impaired.

The first stage of the DDA came into place in December 1996 and rendered it illegal to treat a disabled person less favourably because of their disability.

In October 1999 businesses and organisations were required to make ‘reasonable adjustments’ for staff with disabilities. This meant providing extra help in the workplace or extra equipment. Service providers had to adjust the way they provide their services to customers – such as offering bank statements in large print.

The third phase, introduced in October 2004, applies to access to and from buildings for people with disabilities. It requires all organisations to make physical alterations such as installing ramps for wheelchair users.

The DDA Act means all organisations must now make ‘reasonable adjustments’ so their services and premises are accessible to people with disabilities. It can mean making signs clearer for the visually impaired, having an audio frequency induction loop for deaf people or installing a stair lift on the premises so give customers and staff access to all floors.

Ransome Mobility supply commercial stairlifts to assist businesses in meeting their DDA requirements.

About Ransome Mobility

Ransome Mobility is a friendly, family-run company with over 25 years’ experience. We are a leading supplier of domestic stairlifts including straight stairlifts, curved stairlifts and wheelchair lifts in Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire and London.

Straight Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >
Curved Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >

When it comes to choosing straight stairlifts or curved stairlifts, the range of manufacturers and optional extras available can sometimes be overwhelming. If you are looking to buy a stairlift, Ransome Mobility can assist you in selecting just the right one to suit your requirements. We supply straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts, new and reconditioned and also provide stairlift rental.

Choosing a Stairlift – Straight or Curved?

This is the first question to ask yourself when choosing a stairlift. The answer depends on the shape of the staircase you have in your home. A straight stairlift runs on a straight rail and is the most common type of stairlift. A curved stairlift has to be made-to-measure to suit individual staircases as the rail will vary depending on the size and shape of the curve. This makes it more costly than a straight stairlift. It is important to note, however, that just one step that turns a corner on the stairs, means the customer will require a curved stairlift.

Choosing a stairlift – which manufacturer?

There are many different stairlift manufacturers including Minivator, Freelift, Home Adapt and Access BDD. Different manufacturers may be better than others – depending on the needs of the customer. An independent stairlift supplier like Ransome Mobility offers impartial advice to ensure the customer picks the right stairlift to suit their current and also evolving requirements.

So how does the process work? Once we have received an enquiry from a customer, Ransome Mobility will send one of our friendly, expert engineers to advise and explain the options to you. We also measure up and provide a home evaluation and quotation – all free of charge and without obligation.

All our stairlifts are installed by manufacturer trained engineers. Once installed, our expert engineers will test it fully and talk you through exactly how to use it. We also offer an unmatched after care service. Our trained team is available 24/7, so there is always someone on hand to assist you, every day of the year.

Choosing a stairlift – which features?

Our stairlifts come with a number of basic, or standard features, but more advanced options are available on some models. We will help you decide which ones are suitable for you, depending on your requirements.

Some of the standard features to expect from our stairlifts are: a padded seat and armrests for extra comfort, a seatbelt for safety, a footplate with anti-slip covering, an adjustable seat height (on all but one of the models), a folding seat, arms and footrest for extra space saving, a simple to use joystick for changing direction, a key switch to disable the stairlift and to prevent unauthorised use, and a manual swivel seat so the seat can be turned for easy dismounting.

All our stairlifts are battery powered to ensure continuous use, even in a power cut. The battery is automatically charged when the lift is at rest. They also come with remote controls to call the stairlift either up or down the stairs, which is especially useful if the stairlift will be used by more than one person.

More advanced options are available on some stairlift models, to provide greater ease of use. However, not all of these options are available on every model.

These additional extras include:

  • A manual or power hinged track to move the track away from doors and other through routes when not in use
  • A unique slide track to clear hallways and doors. The track will automatically move up the staircase with the lift to clear any obstruction caused by the track in the lower hallway. It is less cumbersome than a power hinged track
  • A powered swivel seat to provide easier mounting or dismounting at the touch of a button. This is particularly useful for customers with poor upper body strength or arm mobility
  • A linked footrest which automatically folds the footrest up with the seat for simple space saving. It means the customer does not have to bend down to manually fold the foot plate up
  • A powered foot rest riser so the customer does not have to bend down to manually fold the foot plate up to clear access for other users. Instead it is raised by a switch on the arm or linked into the folding seat
  • A perch option so that people who cannot bend their knees can use a stairlift. It is also useful for narrow staircases
  • Different coloured upholstery options
  • Curved armrests to curve round the front of the body during travel for extra comfort
  • An advanced ride monitoring system to maximise on space. This is ideal for narrow staircases
  • Weather-proof options available for outside stairlifts
  • A heavy-duty stairlift designed to carry passengers who weigh up to 30 stone

About Ransome Mobility

Ransome Mobility is a friendly, family-run company with over 25 years’ experience. We are a leading supplier of domestic stairlifts including straight stairlifts, curved stairlifts and wheelchair lifts in Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire and London. We are based in East Anglia.

Straight Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >
Curved Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >

Stairlifts come in two main types: straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts. So what exactly is a stairlift? A stairlift is a motorised chair installed on the edge of a staircase. When activated, the chair can be used for transporting a person either up or down the stairs. It is designed for anyone who has difficulty using a staircase and provides access to all areas of the home when stairs presents a barrier.

What are the differences between straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts?

Straight stairlifts are designed for staircases with straight rails, whereas the curved variety provides a solution for stairways with a tight bend, narrow staircases, or even spiral staircases. Both types are streamlined for ultimate comfort and strength, while also taking up as little hallway space as possible. Stairlifts can be bought new or reconditioned. While straight stairlifts can be rented, curved ones cannot as they are made-to-measure to suit individual staircases.

Ransome Mobility sell Minivator, Flow, Freelift, HomeGlide, Home Adapt and Simplicity stairlifts. We pride ourselves on our excellent customer service. Based in the heart of East Anglia, we offer the highest level of service at the lowest prices possible, on all our mobility products.

We also have a team of in-house or mobile engineers on hand to provide 24 hour assistance for our mobility products. Ransome Mobility Solutions has been established for more than 30 years.

The History of Stairlifts

Remarkably, the origins of the stairlift date as far back as the 16th century, during the reign of King Henry VIII. Injured in a jousting accident, the monarch was carried up and down stairs on a platform by a pulley system operated by servants.

However, it was not until the early part of the 20th century that the first commercial stairlift became available. The first prototype – the Inclin-ator – was built by C C Crispin, a Pensylvannia Entrepreneur who wanted a way to enable his friend to get from floor to floor. The Inclin-ator was sold commercially in the 1930’s and was mainly used by people who had polio, as there were frequent worldwide polio epidemics at the time.

Modern Stairlifts – Stairlift Features

Modern stairlifts – also called chair lifts, or stair gliders – provide users with greater independence. They allow users to stay in their own homes because it gives them unlimited access to upstairs. Today’s versions are comfortable, stronger and come with a range of different options which make them safe and simple to use. These include arm rests, home safety switches, seatbelts, adjustable seat heights, speed governors, joysticks for changing direction, electronically controlled soft starts and stops, remote controls and a power hinged track to clear hallways and doors. Some can even be used outside. There are also stairlifts available to carry passengers who weigh up to 30 stone.

Stairlifts are designed for all manner of staircases including straight staircases and curved staircases – and even spiral staircases. However, curved stairlifts are generally more expensive than straight stairlifts because they have to be tailored to suit individual types of curved staircases, which can vary according to the curve or size of the stairs.

Stairlifts can either be installed on the left or right hand side of the staircases depending on the user’s preference. They also come with the option of a manual or powered swivel seat. The seat can be turned at an angle (generally either 45 or 90 degrees) and secured in place so the user can dismount safely.

Modern stairlifts are streamlined so they take up as little space in the hallway as possible. Stairlifts run on electricity, but most models now are battery powered, which means that the stairlift can still be used in a power cut.

The Future of Stairlifts

The demand for stairlifts will continue to increase, as more and more people are living longer in the UK. The future looks brighter for stairlift users as there will be even more technological innovations including more reliable and compact ones. It is also likely they will become much cheaper to manufacture – and therefore be cheaper to buy – and stairlifts of the future will become much more energy efficient. As technology is advancing all the time, this will be a great advantage to the future customer who may also want to benefit from the freedom and independence the stairlift provides.

About Ransome Mobility Solutions

Ransome Mobility Solutions is a friendly, family run business specialising in mobility products and vehicle adaptions. We supply and install a wide range of stairlifts designed to help make life easier for customers in Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Northamptonshire, Cambridgeshire, London and UK wide.

Straight Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >
Curved Stairlifts – click here to view our range of products >

Ransome Mobility specialise in straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts and provide a wide choice of solutions for both domestic and commercial premises. Whether you need to buy a stairlift for your home or business, or require a stairlift rental – we can help.

Buying a stairlift

If you are buying a stairlift for the first time, it can be a daunting process. With a huge number of different manufacturers to choose from and models varying in the features they offer it can be hard to know where to begin. This is where Ransome Mobility can help.

We are a family run business based in Suffolk, offering a national stairlift service. Because we are not affiliated to one particular manufacturer, we provide independent, objective advice and will help you to choose the right stairlift solution to suit your individual requirements.

Straight Stairlifts & Curved Stairlifts – contact us now to discuss your requirements. We offer all customers a free quotation and survey >

Choosing a Stairlift

Straight or Curved?

The first thing to consider when buying a stairlift is the type that you will require. The two options are straight stairlifts, which are used on straight flights of stairs and curved stairlifts which are individually designed to match the shape of your staircase.

Click here for more information about straight stairlifts >
Click here for more information about curved stairlifts >

Buy or Rent?

If you require a straight stairlift it is also worth asking yourself whether you actually need to buy one. Stairlift rental can sometimes be more cost effective, such as for short-term use after an operation. A good rule of thumb is that if the rental period is likely to be shorter than eighteen months, it probably make more sense to rent.

Click here for more information on our stairlift rental >

Which Manufacturer?

Here at Ransome Mobility we recommend four stairlift manufacturers, which are Minivator, Access BDD, Bison, Freelift and Home Adapt. Between them they offer a wide range of stairlift solutions for all types of home.

Minivator Stairlifts

Minivator stairlifts are a well respected stairlift manufacturer who have a reputation for building products which offer the customer reliability and great value for money.

The Minivator range offers the following useful features:

  • A powered hinge track and unique Slide Track – to prevent the track blocking doorways
  • Remote control – enabling the user to control the lift from either the bottom or top of the stairs
  • Left or right handed controls – To suit the user’s preference
  • Swivel seat option (powered or manual) – makes for easier dismounting
  • Adjustable seat – to ensure a comfy journey up or down the stairs
  • Automatic cut-out safety sensors – this safety feature will bring the stairlift to a gentle stop if it senses something in its pathway
  • Battery powered – meaning no mobility problems even in a power cut

Bison Stairlifts

Bison offer three types of stairlift, with models suitable for both straight and curved stairs.

Features include:

  • Slim, stylish design allowing plenty of access even on narrow stairs
  • Comfortable to use. Operated by a rocker switch which is located on the arm rest
  • Remote control to enable the stairlift to be remotely called
  • Battery powered – meaning no mobility problems even in a power cut
  • Foot-rest is close to the ground and there is no step
    Bison stairlifts can be folded away when not in use

Homeadapt Stairlifts

Homeadapt stairlifts are the best-selling stairlifts in the US. The company offers three different stairlift options for straight and curved staircases. Whether you want a top of the range or best value stairlift, they have models to suit.

Basic features include:

  • Adjustable seat height for comfort
  • Adjustable seat height for easier entry/exit at top and bottom of stairway
  • Battery powered – meaning no mobility problems even in a power cut
  • Five years warranty for major components and two years warranty on parts
  • Swivel seat option – makes for easier dismounting
  • Installation requires no changes to your staircase
  • Carries minimum of 20 stone (certain models carry up to 30 stone)
  • Stairlift can be folded away when not in use
  • Automatic cut-out safety sensors – this safety feature will bring the stairlift to a gentle stop if it senses something in its pathway
  • Quiet and smooth operation

Freelift Stairlifts

Freelift manufacture a number of different stairlift options for both curved and straight staircases.

Features include:

  • Track fixes directly to staircase so no construction work is usually required.
  • The range includes a heavy duty stairlift which can carry users of up to 30 stone.
  • Swivel seat option (manual or powered) – makes for easier dismounting.
  • Battery powered – meaning no mobility problems even in a power cut.
  • Adjustable seat and headrest heights for comfort.
  • Stairlift can be folded away when not in use.
  • Quiet and smooth operation

Access BDD Stairlifts

  • Stairlifts are secured to stair treads rather than the wall
  • All stairlifts are manufactured in accordance with health and safety standards including the European Standards to ensure customer safety
  • Access BDD stairlifts feature a slim design, which leaves the rest of the staircase clear for other users
  • Stairlifts are easy to operate via an ergonomically designed switch on the armrest of the stairlift and remote control call

Other Tips When Buying a Stairlift

Always check whether there is a cost to obtain a stairlift quotation before you ask a company to come and visit you.

Here at Ransome Mobility all of our stairlift surveys and quotations are completely free of charge.

Confirm that a company you contact is an approved distributor for the stairlift make you are interested in. This is important in order that your stairlift can be maintained properly and replacement parts can be ordered easily.

Ransome Mobility are approved distributors for Minivator, Bison, Homeadapt, Access BDD and Freelift stairlifts.

Decide what stairlift features are essential for you and have this ready for when you make your initial enquiries with your chosen stairlift company. This will help them to assist you in deciding which products are most suited to your requirements.

Ransome Mobility are not affiliated to just one stairlift manufacturer. This means that we can give you impartial advice and find a stairlift solution that is perfectly suited to your requirements.

Find out about their aftersales service. For example, do they offer servicing and aftercare support if you experience a problem with your stairlift?

Ransome Mobility offer a 24/365 call out service so there is always someone to help or advise you every day of the year.

 

Ransome Mobility supply and install a range of stair lifts including straight stair lifts, curved stair lifts, rental stair lifts and reconditioned stair lifts to customers in Suffolk, Essex, London, Norfolk, Hertfordshire, Northampton, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough. We can also install Nationwide. We are approved resellers for Minivator, Bison, Freelift, Homeadapt and Access BDD, and as we are not tied to one particular company we are able to offer impartial advice on choosing a new or reconditioned stair lift. This will ensure that you choose the best stair lift to suit your requirements, both now and into the future. All of our stairlift installations, for both new, rental and reconditioned stair lifts, are supported by a team of qualified engineers who have been trained by the product manufacturer.

What are reconditioned stairlifts?

Reconditioned stair lifts are second hand stairlifts which have been thoroughly tested and renewed to provide a good as new alternative to buying a new stairlift.

We currently supply and install straight reconditioned stair lifts by Minivator, Bison, Freelift, Homeadapt and Access BDD and curved reconditioned stair lifts by Minivator, Bison, Freelift, Homeadapt and Access BDD. Please contact us to find out which makes and models we currently have available as reconditioned stair lifts.

HomeGlide – Straight Rail Stairlift >
HomeGlide Extra – Straight Rail Stairlift >
Home Adapt Elite – Straight Rail Stairlift >
Minivator 1000 – Straight Stairlift >
Simplicity – Straight Stairlift >
Simplicity + – Straight Stairlift >
Freelift – Curved Rail Stairlift >
Flow Stairlift – Curved Rail Stairlift >
Minivator 2000 – Curved Stairlift >

Why choose a reconditioned stair lift?

The main benefit of buying a reconditioned stair lift is that it costs less than a brand new model, whilst still providing the same great benefits. A reconditioned stair lift will give you back the freedom and independence to get around your home, for a much reduced cost.

A reconditioned stair lift will have been tested thoroughly to ensure it is as safe and reliable as a new stair lift and they can be purchased with comprehensive warranty package and the same great support we offer for all new models.

Our reconditioned stair lifts generally come with a six month warranty, however this depends on how new the lift is. Very new reconditioned stair lifts often come with a twelve month warranty.

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How much can you save buying a reconditioned model?

This really depends on the model. With a reconditioned straight lift you may be able to save up to £500 and there are possible savings of £1500 on reconditioned curved stairlifts.

Which models of stair lift do Ransome Mobility supply as reconditioned?

We supply all models, depending on stock levels

Do they look as good as new?

Yes

How we work

For more information on our reconditioned stair lifts please contact us. On the receipt of your enquiry, we will make an appointment to come and visit your home and carry out a free of charge stairlift survey. We will then discuss with you the choices on offer and assist you in selecting the best solution to suit your requirements – both now and as they develop.

Once installed, we provide full after sales support, including 24 hour call out service, 365 days a year. All of our engineers are manufacturer trained, ensuring the highest quality of servicing at all times.

Reconditioned Stair Lifts – contact us now to discuss your requirements >

Ransome Mobility supply a comprehensive range of straight stairlifts and curved stairlifts from leading stairlift manufacturers including Minivator, Bison, Freelift, Homeadapt and Access BDD. Among our most popular stairlifts are the Simplicity straight stairlifts and the Simplicity + straight stairlifts, which are ideal for staircases with no curves or bends.

Simplicity Straight Stairlifts

The Simplicity straight stairlift offers excellent value and gives those who need help in getting up and down stairs, the freedom of greater independence in their home. Whether for short term or long term mobility problems, the Minivator straight stairlift is practical, safe and reliable.

Designed with a comfortable, padded seat in a neutral beige colour, with wipe clean flame retardant fabric, the Simplicity straight stairlift can transport passengers weighing up to 22 stone. It features an adjustable seat, 2 remote controls, safety seatbelt, manual swivel seat for easy dismounting and an easy to use toggle which can be controlled by either the left or the right hand. For added security it includes a key switch which prevents it being used when it is not supposed to be.

This straight stairlift is battery operated, which means that it work even if power is down. The chair charges wherever it is positioned on the track, meaning that it is always ready to use. It is also very easy to install and no modifications are required or damage to your décor. When not in use, the chair can be folded away to create maximum space on your staircase.

The optional extras for the Simplicity straight starlight include a unique slide track to clear hallways and doors, a manual hinged track to clear hallways and doors and a powered footplate.

Simplicity Straight Stairlifts – Contact us now for a free stairlift quote >

Technical Information

  •  Minimum swivel radius: 680mm (with short arm: 644mm)
  • Minimum wall to seat back: 75mm
  • Seat Depth: 370mm
  • Minimum folded width to footplate: 285mm
  • Minimum open width to edge of footplate: 580mm
  • Armrest width – external: 625mm
  • Armrest width – internal: 480mm
  • Seat back height: 400mm
  • Footplate to seat height
    – standard seat option: 390-490mm
    – extended seat post: 460-560mm
  • Minimum footplate height: 50mm
  • Bottom parking space required: 660mm
  • Minimum track intrusion into staircase: 160mm
  • Minimum track intrusion into top landing (typical at 45° ): 150mm*
  • Maximum weight limit: 140kg/22 stone (hinge/slidetrack: 120kg/19 stone)
  • Speed: 0.12m/sec (approx)
  • Power supply: 24v DC Battery
  • Charger: 240v
  • Staircase angle: 27-50°

Simplicity + Straight Stairlift

Building on the success of the Simplicity straight stairlift, the Simplicity + straight stairlift offers all of the above functionality with some extras. As standard, the Simplicity + has a fully padded smart seat which comes in six different colour choices (cocoa, ruby, sand, sapphire, slate and jade). It also features a retractable seat belt instead of a safety seatbelt.

Additional feature options include:

  • A powered seat swivel – this provides easy mounting and dismounting at the touch of a button, for customers with poor upper body strength or arm mobility
  • A powered footrest riser – this stops the customer having to bend down to manually raise the footplate to clear access for other users. Instead the footplate can be raised by a simple switch on the arm or linked in to the folding seat
  • A unique slide track to clear hallways and doors – Minivator’s Unique slide track means the track will automatically move up the staircase with the lift and clear any obstruction caused by the track in the lower hallway. This is an alternative to the hinge and is a lot less cumbersome, making it a very popular choice for private clients
  • A manual hinged track to clear hallways and doors.
  • Perch option – this is useful for clients with poor mobility in their knees who may struggle to bend their legs. This feature may also be employed in very narrow staircases, as it will allow us to install a lift with out clashing issues caused by seated models

Technical Information

  • Minimum swivel radius: 655mm
  • Minimum wall to seat back: 65mm
  • Seat depth: 360mm
  • Minimum folded width to footplate: 370mm
  • Minimum open width to edge of footplate: 570mm
  • Armrest width – external: 550mm
  • Armrest width – internal: 460mm
  • Seat back height: 453mm
  • Footplate to seat height
    – standard seat option: 430-540mm
    – perch seat option: 677-877mm
  • Minimum footplate height: 70mm
  • Bottom parking space required: 575mm (50°) min to 690 at shallow angle (30°)
  • Minimum track intrusion into staircase: 185mm
  • Minimum track overhang at top of stairs (typical at 45°): 150mm
  • Minimum track intrusion at bottom of stairs: 250mm
  • Maximum weight limit: 140kg/22 stone
    – hinge/slidetrack: 120kg/19 stone
  • Speed: 0.12m/sec (approx)
  • Power supply: 24v DC Battery
  • Charger: 100-240v (50-60hz)
  • Staircase angle: 27-50°

About Minivator Stair lifts

Minivator Stairlifts are one of the world’s largest stairlift manufacturers and have an excellent reputation for the products they create. Whether you require a straight stairlift or curved stairlift, the Minivator product range contains stairlifts to suit most requirements. Minivator offer great value budget stairlifts through to top of the range models with all the functionality you require – now and into the future. Ransome Mobility are an approved supplier for Minivator and can help you choose the right stairlift for your home or business premises.

All Minivator stairlifts feature optional left / right hand controls to suit the user whether they are right or left handed. They are built with a height adjustable swivel seat which makes it comfortable for users of varying heights and easy to dismount. All Minivator stairlifts can be operated by remote control, allowing the lift to be called up or down the stairs. This is particularly important in homes where the stairlift is used by more than one person.

All Minivator stairlifts have built in safety features such as automatic cut out sensors – meaning that the lift will gently stop if it detects something blocking the path. They are also all battery powered, ensuring continuous use, even in the event of a power cut.