Summary: How much does a stair lift cost, average stair lift installation costs and average price of a stair lift.
For many people complete freedom of mobility cannot be taken for granted. For those who find it demanding or impossible going upstairs or downstairs, there is a simple and effective solution. A stair lift will take away the worry and strenuous effort associated with stair climbing and will improve the quality of life for the user in this respect.
|Straight stair lift||£1,600 – £2,500||2019||n/a|
|Curved stair lift||£4,000 – £8,000||2019||n/a|
|Installation (Labour)||£900 – £1,500||2019||n/a|
Factors to consider
There are three main designs of stair lift. Straight stair lifts move in a straight line from the hallway to the top of your stairs and back again, curved stair lifts are for a staircase that bends and there are also outdoor stair lifts, used for outside steps leading up to a front or back door. Modern stair lifts now run on DC Power, or are battery operated, thus eliminating any hazardous surface wiring. An advantage of the battery-operated designs is that the (charged) stair lift will continue to work during a power cut. The running cost of using a stair lift is very low, compared say to boiling a kettle and they are very quiet when in motion. They are operated by applying pressure to a toggle switch which is on the arm rest; when pressure is released they stop moving or else they stop when the chair reaches its destination.
Factors that are worth considering when purchasing a stair lift are the type of stair lift required, the manufacturer and the after sales support service and breakdown insurance of the machine. The main manufacturers of stair lifts are; Acorn, Ameriglide, Bruno, Stannah, Summit,Companion Stair Lifts, Minivator Stairlifts, Bison Stairlifts, Meditek Stair lifts and Freelift Stair lifts. Regular maintenance is required to ensure it is running safely and adequately, much like servicing a boiler. A curved stair lift usually requires more maintenance than a straight stair lift. This is simply down to the pressure of the chair having to bend around the track over time. An option of getting around this is if your staircase has separate flat landing levels, like a dog-leg staircase. In this case, it may be worth considering installing two straight stair lifts instead of a curved one. Another consideration is that due to the curved stair lift being custom built, it may prove virtually impossible to transfer it to another property. In general, as with many electric or mechanical items, there is the cheaper option of buying a reconditioned one. However, there will not be the warranty cover that a new model will provide. It may also become costly if new parts are required and it is often the case that the older the machine is, the harder it is to get those replacement parts.
Curved stair lifts take longer to fabricate – usually from three to ten weeks depending on the specification of the individual staircase. A straight stair lift may take seven to ten days. Battery stair lifts are easier to install as there is no complicated electrical wiring and is within the scope of the competent ‘DIYer’. However, if the stair lift carriage is installed incorrectly it can lead to the body casting breaking and cracking. Unless the amateur installer is confident it is better to get a professional installer – any problems could mean the call out charge of a qualified engineer and at worst the cost of a new stair lift if it has been damaged beyond repair. Installation of a stair lift has to meet standard building regulations and health and safety issues. These are covered under the British Standard BS 5776: 1996 Specification for Powered Stair lifts and the Building Regulation Act 1991. The occupier that is having the stair lift fitted should also consult with the local Building Control Department.
People who have mobility difficulties can feel disheartened within their home if they cannot move around as freely as they would like to. Stair lifts can provide a less mobile person with the independence to access all parts of their home and thus provide the opportunity for a better quality of life and allow them to continue to live in their home.
Costs to consider
Straight stair lifts are much quicker to install and usually much cheaper than curved stair lifts. Curved stair lifts are custom made to fit the particular staircase. The supply of a straight stair lift can cost between £1,600 – £2,500, whilst a curved stair lift will be between £4,000 – £8,000. The cost to professionally install a stair lift is usually around £900 – £1,500.