A Home Lift Guide: What are they, how are they installed, and how much do they cost?

A Home Lift Guide: What are they, how are they installed, and how much do they cost?

Have you ever wondered how much a home lift costs in Wales? Many people are curious, especially when deciding between a home lift or a stairlift. Home lifts are typically used to help people with mobility issues, an ideal solution for those who struggle with the stairs and gaining access to different floors levels within the home. They’re a viable alternative to a traditional stairlift, providing greater functionality and better accessibility for all family members. An Adaptmyhome Home Lift may cost less than you think; read on to find out more or Contact Us for a free no-obligation survey and quotation.

What is a domestic home lift, and how do they work?

A residential home lift allows users to move between floors using quiet, simple, reliable hydraulic or electric traction mechanisms. Home lifts can be through-the-floor, freestanding or platform lifts in a shaft. Home lifts vary in size to suit a range of mobility circumstances. The chosen lift will depend on the property type, where the lift can be located within the property, along with the user’s current or future mobility capability. Home lifts provide a safe, reliable and efficient way for people with disabilities or age-related medical conditions to move about their homes.

The majority of lifts found in the home are through-the-floor home lifts. These lifts move up and down on a pair of guide rails located at the back of the lift, although our Stiltz lift has them positioned centrally. A through-the-floor home lift travels from the lower level to the upper level via an aperture made in the existing floor joists. With the use of optional manufacturer equipment, it is possible to adapt certain through-the-floor home lifts so they can be positioned freestanding in the hallway to travel from the hallway to the landing area.

Our smallest home lift has a footprint of only 692mm x 1040mm.

A hydraulic or electric traction home lift, which is best? In our opinion, both options have positives and negatives, so we don’t promote one type over the other. We advise that you make your lift choice based on the cabin type that best suits your circumstances. You may find that your chosen home lift only comes in in one kind of drive system; for example, Terry Lifts only offer hydraulic systems, Stiltz lifts only supply electric traction, whereas Pollock and Access offer both options.

A hydraulic system’s advantage is that it is generally considered more reliable than electric traction; it also has a simpler override mechanism to lower the lift in the unlikely event of a fault. Hydraulic lifts require a separate pump unit that contains the hydraulic pump and fluid reservoir. The hydraulic pump emits a slight hum when pushing fluid into the hydraulic ram to send the lift upwards; a valve regulates the downward direction, so the pump isn’t used when the lift descends. The pump unit is usually located away from the lift (outside or in a cupboard), so there is little noise to be heard when standing near or in the home lift. A small-diameter hose is used to connect the pump housing to the lift. When it is not possible to install a separate pump housing, an electric traction lift should be considered.

Depending on the manufacturer, electric traction lifts use special ropes with a counterweight to balance the load or a drum-braked gear system. Again, depending on the manufacturer, these mechanisms are either located on the upper-level ceiling or in the top section of the lift – this does mean that headroom is critical. Electric traction lifts are typically more energy-efficient, provide a smoother ride and travel faster than hydraulic lifts, although home lifts are limited to a maximum speed of 0.06 meters per second. So, for your typical house, a home lift would take approximately 35 to 40 seconds to travel from one floor to the other.

How is a home lift installed?

A through-the-floor home lift travels through a hole made in the floor. The aperture is formed by strengthening and trimming the existing joists to the appropriate size and relocating any wiring of pipework that may be present. This work usually involves the services of a structural engineer, and the local authority Building Control Department must sign off the work. You will know if a company has notified Building Control, as you will receive a certificate of approval on completion.

Some of the models in the Stiltz home lift range can be fitted with support brackets to allow the lift to be ‘freestanding’. So, if you have room in your hallway, a Stiltz lift can travel from your hall to your landing area. For safety reasons, modifications to the banister are required; this is done by creating a gate that interlocks with the lift. Feel free to Contact Us if you wish to explore this option.

The majority of the load/weight of all through-the-floor home lifts is on the lower-level floor. Fixings to the joist and upper levels are mostly for lateral support. Upper-level support can be wall or ceiling mounted.

Whether the lift is hydraulic or electric, the electrical loading on a home lift is actually relatively small. Ideally, all home lifts should be connected to a dedicated circuit protected by the correct fuse rating and a 30mA residual current device (RCD). A separate supply enables the home lift to continue to function if a fault were to develop on other circuits. Some manufacturers allow their lifts to be fitted with a plug top connected to an existing socket outlet. An electrical certificate should be provided whenever any electrical has taken place; in some situations, Building Control should be notified.

All our home lifts allow the lift to descend in the event of a power cut. As an optional extra, some manufacturers offer a full battery backup system, to allow continued lift use in the event of a power failure.

The home lift itself is delivered ‘flat pack’ and has to be assembled on site. As well as in-car controls, all our lifts come with two separate remote controls – one for each level. Once the lift is operational we carry out multiple tests to ensure the lift is operating safely and complies with all lift manufacturer requirements. We then demonstrate the lift to the end-user; this is called the commissioning and handover process.

How Much Does a Home Lift Cost in Wales?

Unlike other home lift companies, Adaptmyhome can supply and install four major home lift brands – Stiltz Lifts, Pollock Lifts, Terry Lifts and Access Home Lifts. Each manufacturer offers something different but what they all have in common is quality and reliability.

With such a wide range of options to choose from, we can be sure to match the home lift that suits you best.

So, how much do they cost? Well, we can only provide you with an accurate price after carrying out a survey at your property, but as a guide, our current price list ranges from £9,000 to £16,000, with the majority of home lifts installations falling somewhere in the middle.

  • To supply and install an electric traction home lift, where all building and electrical work is carried out by others, you would be looking at a price starting at just over £9,000.

Considering some curved stairlifts cost in the region of £8,000, we think it’s well worth considering a home lift.

Interested in an Adaptmyhome home lift installation?

If you’re considering a home lift to make your home more accessible, please get in touch. We can discuss your requirements and from there we can forward some brochures, a price guide and arrange a no-obligation home lift survey.

Home Lift Survey: The Process

Although we can obtain some lifts within a few days, most home lifts are built to order, therefore a home lift survey is critical. During the survey, we will establish which lift best suits your needs and look at location options within your home. Once the lift position is decided, measurements are taken, the structural integrity of the floor checked, and the electrical installation inspected.

If you decide to proceed with the home lift order, we will look to secure a deposit before arranging an independent structural engineer and placing the order with the lift manufacturer

Government Grants & Funding Available

Many people are unaware that they can take advantage of government grants and funding available to improve their home environment and help them live a better quality of life. We recommend that you check with your local authority to see if you are eligible for financial aid with the installation of your new Adaptmyhome home lift.