Stannah ACME Stairlifts Guide
Once you’ve made the decision to get a stairlift, the next step is finding the model that’s right for you. You know you need a stairlift that will get you from A to B, and you need it at a good price, but what other questions should you be asking?
Our experts are available from start to finish to assist you in planning and executing your stairlift installation. We’ll work with you to identify key issues that will impact the design, specifications and features that will best suit your needs. Read on to learn more about some important stairlift topics and discover how to choose the company and model that’s best for you.
What to Look for in a Stairlift
How to choose the stairlift that’s right for you.
What to Look for in a Stairlift Company
Important qualities to look for in a stairlift company.
How to Buy a Stairlift
The three key steps involved in buying a stairlift.
Even more helpful tips to assist you in buying a stairlift.
What to Look for in a Stairlift
How Long Will You Need It?
When looking for a stairlift, the first question you should be asking is, “how long do I plan to live in my home?” The answer to this question will determine much of what comes next. If you’re planning to move in the next six months to a year, a temporary stairlift rental can be a great option. However, if your goal is to age in place over the long-term, an outright purchase is the better option.
We often recommend the “18-month rule” to our customers. If you plan on staying in your home for a year and a half or longer, a stairlift purchase is usually the way to go. While every situation is different, deciding up front if this is a short-term fix or a long-term solution can clarify your approach to the stairlift process.
What Features will you need?
Stairlifts come in all shapes and sizes: straight, curved, spiral, indoor, outdoor…the list goes on. But determining the shape of your stairs and the type of rail you’ll need is only one part of the solution. You also need to take into account the personal mobility of the stairlift user. Does he or she have difficulty bending their knees? Is getting up from a seated position difficult for the user? Would swiveling the chair at the top landing be made easier by a power turning option?
These are just a few of the important questions that determine which features and options you’ll need to consider for your stairlift purchase. Fortunately, this won’t be something you need to figure out on your own. Our stairlift experts will work with you to identify the features and options that will best suit the user, so you can be confident that your stairlift will get the job done.
How Much Does a Stairlift Cost?
Stairlift pricing depends on a few factors. First and foremost is the shape of your stairs. Straight stairlifts are a less complicated design and cheaper to manufacture. Typically, straight stairlift pricing ranges from $2,800- $5,000. Meanwhile, curved stairlifts depend on rails designed for that specific staircase. Whether modular or custom-made, these stairlifts require hands-on design and engineering and take more time to manufacture. As a result, curved stairlifts are more expensive, costing $8,500 and up, depending on the length and shape of your stairs.
Additional options, like a powered swivel seat or a folding rail can also impact the price of your stairlift; but the necessity of those add-on features will be determined during your stairlift assessment.
Installation and Warranties
A great part about working with Stannah ACME is the quality support we offer our customers. While some companies simply take your money and send a stairlift in the mail, we include professional installation with every sale and rental. This ensures that the job is done right, so you can rely on your stairlift to carry you safely up and downstairs. We also take the time to demonstrate the stairlift once it’s installed and always leave your home as clean as we found it.
In addition to our installation service, we also offer extended parts and labor warranties for both new and refurbished stairlift models. The length of the warranty will depend on whether your purchase a new or used stairlift, but either way, you’ll have the peace of mind that comes with knowing your stairlift is backed by Stannah ACME’s strong warranty coverage.
What to Look for in a Stairlift Company
Buying online versus Purchasing from a Reputable Company
People make so many purchases online these days, so why not do the same with a stairlift? Unfortunately, there are a lot of drawbacks to this approach. Whether you’re working with an online retailer or purchasing a stairlift on the secondary market, buying a stairlift online comes with no guarantees that it will fit properly on your stairs. Worse, it’s likely that you’ll have a difficult time finding someone to complete the installation, even if it does fit. And, if you are able to get the stairlift installed, you won’t have access to service after the fact.
Working directly with a reputable company, like Stannah ACME, you can be sure that your stairlift will be made to the exact specifications you need. Moreover, you’ll get quality professional installation, an extended warranty and access to top-notch service from a company that will be there for you, long after your stairlift has been installed.
Local Aftercare & Support
Access to local aftercare service is an important factor that often goes overlooked. Many people don’t consider how to take care of their stairlift, once it’s been installed. While, it’s understandable to focus on upfront costs and installation, working with a company like Stannah ACME ensures that you will have access to local stairlift service and preventative maintenance for years to come.
Choosing the right stairlift company depends on many factors. You’ll have to decide on the criteria that’s most important to you. But online reviews provide a great resource. What features does the company offer? How is their service record? Are they honest and upfront with their customers? Reading online reviews can help clarify the picture, so you can feel confident in the company you choose to work with.
How to Buy a Stairlift
After you’ve completed your research, it’s time to get a quote and have your stairs measured. In many cases, this can be done over the phone or through video chat, but curved stairs will eventually have to be measured in-person.
Once your Stannah ACME stairlift expert has measured your stairs and determined the shape and length of the rail, he or she will take some time to discuss the mobility of the user and point out options that will make operation safer and easier. Following this visit, you’ll be left with a quote and the expert’s contact information, so you can get in touch with any follow-up questions.
You can take as much time as you need with your stairlift quotation, confident in knowing the price on the paper is the price you’ll pay. In most cases, we try to provide a few purchase options. Whether it’s a rent-to-own, refurbished or new purchase, we’ll work with you to make sure that you get both the stairlift you want and the financial options you need.
Once you’ve decided to move forward with your stairlift purchase, you’ll simply call our office or speak directly with your Stannah ACME stairlift advisor. From there, we’ll schedule your “contact-free” stairlift installation. The timeline will depend on the model you need, our schedule and your availability (someone needs to be home during installation). Typically, it’s good to plan for 1-4 weeks of lead time.
On the day of installation, our installers will call to let you know that they’ve arrived and ask you to wait in a nearby room. Throughout the installation, they’ll wear protective gear, including facemasks and gloves. When finished, they’ll provide a thorough demonstration (from a safe distance) and complete final paperwork. Then, that’s it! You’ll be ready to take your first ride on your new stairlift!
get expert advice
Unlike purchasing a car, buying a stairlift is not something most people have done before. Often, first time stairlift owners struggle to ask the right questions and properly identify key issues that will make or break their stairlift purchase. That’s why talking to an expert is so important.
You should definitely shop around and speak with multiple companies, but don’t just ask about price or fit. Listen to the features and services they offer and take time to listen. Many times, an experienced stairlift advisor can identify issues that you never would have thought to consider.
Think about how the user’s mobility might change over time
As we age, physical tasks that were once easy can become difficult. For many, that’s the main reason for looking into a stairlift in the first place. Even if the stairlift is just a temporary solution to be used while recovering from an injury or procedure, it’s important to think about how the user’s mobility might change over time.
Certain aspects of the process, like lifting up the swivel levers and manually turning the chair onto the top landing could become difficult down the line. Maybe, it’s a good idea to opt for a powered swivel up front, before issues arise down the road. None of us can see the future, but planning ahead carefully gives you the best chance of avoiding potential issues before they arise.
Visit a stairlift showroom
Visiting a stairlift showroom can be enlightening. Most people haven’t tried a stairlift before, so taking a “test drive” can reveal a lot about how they operate and how it feels to use one. Features that seem like “bells and whistles” in the catalog, often prove to be critical for users with limited mobility. How easy is to get in and out of the chair? Can you swivel at the top? How easy is it to use the hand control? Can you fold up the stairlift without bending over?
Not all stairlifts are built the same. Getting to a showroom can really help you identify those differences, so you can make an informed decision. Stannah ACME has showrooms in both Northern and Southern California, so you can stop in and see what we have to offer for yourself.
Don’t buy a stairlift if you still have questions
This final tip is an important one: don’t buy a stairlift if you still have questions. It seems simple enough, but too many people feel like they need to rush into a purchase before taking the time to get all of their questions answered. Price and fit are important, but you should also consider the full value of the entire package. That includes aftercare service, warranty, installation, timeframe and the features and options available for the model you’re choosing.
Your home might have a unique design that requires a bit more thought. Maybe you have an idea for your installation that’s different from what the stairlift advisor suggests. That’s ok! Take the time to raise your concerns, talk it out and get to a solution that’s right for you. At Stannah ACME, we always put the needs of the customer first and we’ll take the extra time it takes to ensure that you’re comfortable and satisfied with your stairlift purchase.