Getting around the Sun Valley these days can be a little challenging due to traffic and construction issues, but for wheelchair-dependent drivers and passengers, getting in and out of your vehicle has never been easier. Wheelchair lifts are now quite advanced in terms of design, dependability and convenience, along with a range of operational choices and prices that make vehicle mobility more widely accessible than in years past.
Wheelchair lifts come in two basic types: Inside or outside the vehicle. There are several factors that will impact your decision on which is right for you (e.g., your vehicle type and price range), but there are some general pros and cons you should keep in mind as you evaluate your options.
The major advantages of inside lifts are:
- The wheelchair is protected from the weather once inside.
- Exterior vehicle dimensions remain unchanged.
- High-end inside lifts allow the user to remain in the chair during the entire transfer.
The disadvantages of inside lifts include:
- They take up vehicle interior or trunk space.
- They frequently require vehicle modifications — sometimes negatively impacting warranties.
- Installation is rather involved and can be expensive.
Outside lifting mechanisms also offer a range of advantages and disadvantages. The positive aspects include:
- It is easy and inexpensive to install most types.
- The vehicle’s interior space is unaffected.
- They require minimal modifications to the vehicle.
These features need to be weighed against factors such as:
- The wheelchair remains outside, exposed to the weather in all seasons.
- Its installation alters the length — and performance — of the vehicle.
- These lifts also alter the aesthetics of the vehicle.
With these basic considerations in mind, you are now ready to begin narrowing down the types of wheelchair lifts that fit into your preferred category. Choices range all the way from platform lifts that can usually handle both chair and user and are popular with mini-vans to the less expensive and simpler hoist-lift system used for just the chair itself.
For expert help during the selection process, know that you can can contact the experts at Power Mobility & Lifts anytime with any questions you may have. We serve the greater Phoenix area.