building wheelchair ramps

Avoid These Critical Mistakes When Installing Building Wheelchair Ramps (Part 2)

In the last post, we discussed some common yet detrimental mistakes to avoid when installing building wheelchair ramps to improve handicap and elderly independence. However, it’s important to understand the full range of mistakes to avoid in order to provide maximum safety and mobility. Here’s part two of our guide to avoiding common mistakes when installing handicap ramps for buildings.

Ramp Is Too Narrow
Wheelchair ramps are relatively wide, so it’s important to accommodate for this width and make sure the ramp you choose is wide enough to handle a range of wheelchair sizes. This also applies to curved staircases that may require the user to make too sharp of a turn before being able to actually access the ramp. Always abide by handicap ramp specifications in order to ensure maximum safety and mobility for all of the ramp’s users.

Too Big Of A Step At The Bottom
This is another detrimental mistake that impacts usability, and unfortunately, it’s extraordinarily common among installers who just don’t know any better and think that a wheelchair’s wheels can handle the steep curbs. But that’s not the case. There shouldn’t really be a ‘step’ at the bottom of any building wheelchair ramps, unless it’s a very tiny one. The entire point of a handicap ramp is to ensure wheelchair access, and many times, these steps — even though they may seem small — actually make the area inaccessible.

Ramp Is Too Steep
Similarly, it’s important to make sure that the ramp you choose is at a proper height and angle from the ground or floor to ensure easy access and use. This means that many times, it may not be able to be installed at the same height as an adjacent staircase. Before installing a ramp, consider how easy it would be to roll a wheelchair down its length. If it seems more difficult than it has to be, chances are there’s something to improve.

According to HomeAdvisor’s 2016 Aging in Place Report, home service professionals say the top aging-in-place projects they’ve been hired to do include installing grab bars (71%) and adding entryway wheelchair ramps (54%). Proper installation of these products is the key to ensuring maximum mobility, safety, and quality of life.

stairlift design

Exploring The 3 Main Types Of Stairlift Designs

stairlift design

By 2030, older adults (seniors) will account for roughly 20% of the U.S. population. Many of these adults strive to stay independent and live in their homes as long as they can. In order to maximize both mobility and home comfort, it may be necessary to invest in a elderly lift assist devices such as stairlifts to easily move between the different floors of your home. Although stairlift designs do vary, understanding the three major types can help you decide which is best for you particular needs. Here’s a guide to help you get to know the three main stairlift designs.

Straight Stairlift for Stairs

Seated Stairlifts For Straight Staircases
If you use a wheelchair and have a straight staircase, a seated stairlift may be the perfect dependable stairlift for you. These are what most people think of when they hear the term ‘stairlift’ — a seated device that attaches to the stairway railing to effortlessly move the patient between floors. While these types of stairlifts are incredibly common and very useful, they may come with minor installation difficulties, particularly if your stairway is especially narrow. However, an expert can easily work with virtually any straight staircase to find a model that suits you.

Curved Stairlift

Seated Stairlifts For Curved Staircases
Seated stairlifts for curved staircases are very similar to those intended for straight staircases. They serve the same function, but their design is more focused around accommodating for the winding nature of many wider, curved staircases. Keep in mind that if a staircase goes around even one corner, it’s considered a curved staircase, which means this may be the right stairlift design for you.

Incline Platfrom Lift for Stairs

Inclined Platform Lifts for Stairs
Often times there is a need for someone to sit in their wheelchair while they access the stairs. This is a great solution for those who have difficulty transferring to a seat and ideally would like to go up and down the stairs while seated in their wheelchair. An incline platform lift is a great solution for this scenario.

Approximately 53 million Americans live with a disability, and according to a recent study, the most common disability is associated with limited mobility. Understanding the different types of stairlifts can help you make an informed decision regarding your specific home layout and mobility needs.

modular wheelchair ramp

Modifying Your Home For Safety As You Age

Preparing your home for accessibility and safety as you age can be a difficult process. When you’ve lived in the same home for decades, it’s hard to think of this peaceful, happy place as dangerous. But if you don’t take the proper precautions to modify your home as you age, dangerous is exactly what it will become. In order to stay in your home for many happy years to come, bolstering your living space with safe options for full mobility is key to staying mobile and safe with age.

Because you’re used to your home safety being a non-issue, we have a few bits of advice that will help you prepare for upping the safety of your living space. We believe Americans have a right to age in place, so let’s look at a few things you can do in your home to maintain your quality of life in the face of mobility issues.

Identify problem spaces
Each year almost 235,000 people are injured in the bathroom, which makes it one of the most risky areas of any home. That’s certainly not the only problem space, but it’s the most frequently recorded. Take an honest look at parts of your home that take a little bit longer to access. Think about places that cause hazards more often. Think about bathrooms, kitchens, entryways, laundry rooms, that icy patch on the driveway, and any places that water or outside elements can add to mobility hazards. These spaces have to be looked into closely because often times they’re so routine that the dangers aren’t apparent until an accident happens. Really scrutinize your home and be honest with yourself about your needed level of safety precautions in these rooms.

Ramp it up!
Outdoor accessibility is as important in your home as it is in public spaces. A modular wheelchair ramp is a great investment that’s easy to install outside your home. They can be set up quickly, taken apart quickly, and because it’s a modular wheelchair ramp, it’s able to be modified to accommodate different settings and variable entryways; a wise, reusable structure.

Automation and communication
Flights of stairs and even some small single step spots in homes can present hazards. Modular wheelchair ramps are a little bulky for indoor stairs, but there are dependable stairlifts that safely zip you up and down your indoor (and sometimes outdoor) stairs without a hitch. Making your home safer as you age is important to you and your family, so maintaining contact with loved ones is vital during this process. Regardless of your desire to maintain independence, accessible communication (keep that mobile phone charged and close) in case of emergency should be a top priority.

We’re here to avoid accidents at all costs and want to help you live in the safest environment possible, and we believe that safe environment can be your own home. Accidents are easily avoidable with the proper preparations. Getting older is an amazing part of life’s journey, let’s do it safely together.

platform lifts for homes

Guide To Understanding Types Of Platform Lifts For Homes (Part 2)

In the last post, we discussed some of the most common types of platform lifts for homes. However, it’s important to have a good understanding of all major types of platform and wheelchair lifts prior to determining which is the best option to improve elderly independence and general accessibility standards. Here’s part two of our guide to understanding the types of platform lifts for homes.

Enclosed Platform Lift
As another option with a durable design, enclosed platform lifts are meant to move within a certain home enclosure. They’re operated by continuous pressure push buttons and are generally equipped with glass doors, allowing passengers to see the inside of the structure when moving between floors. However, they do tend to have smaller capacities; they typically can move passengers between two to three floors only. Enclosed platform lifts may not be ideal elderly lift assist devices due to the fact that they don’t have automatic controls. The user will have to hold the button when traveling between floors, and due to the slower speed of this model, it can take up to 80 seconds to move the user between several floors. Automatic operations are typically much easier to work with, but enclosed platforms can certainly be viable options for multiple situations.

Open Platform Lift
Finally, open platform lifts are, as their name implies, wide open aside from a guarded platform that serves as a wall or barrier on one side of the lift. These lifts are designed for moving between spaces without much elevation changes, such as a mezzanine. They’re typically used in places where ramps are simply not viable. Like their enclosed counterparts, open platform lifts for homes are equipped with push buttons instead of automatic. However, since the distance traveled is typically much shorter, push buttons are easier to use because they don’t need to be held down for nearly as long.

Among older adults, over 50% of all falls take place at home, and ultimately, understanding the various types of platform lifts for homes is the key to deciding which mobility options are right for you or your loved one. For more information about choosing the right patient lifts for home use, contact Access NSM.

Bruno Truck Lifts for Wheelchairs and Scooters

Scooter and Wheelchair Truck Lift Solutions by Bruno

Bruno Truck Lifts for Wheelchairs and Scooters

AccessNSM is excited to be a provider of Bruno lifts for trucks. They have a wide variety of solutions to ensure adequate transport of your mobility scooter or power wheelchair via your truck. They also manufacture unique transfer systems allowing for easier transfers from your scooter or wheelchair into the vehicle. Check out the video below created by Bruno highlighting the various truck lift solutions that they provide as well as the additional product information details below.  Please feel free to contact us about our vehicle lift solutions. We provide free vehicle evaluations to help you determine the most appropriate lift for your truck or vehicle.

 

Transcript and Supporting Product Page Resources

Bruno Stow-Away

Pickup owners rely on their trucks for the versatility to get any job done. If you or a loved one has mobility challenges, count on Bruno’s accessible seating and mobility device lifts to keep you trucking. Outfit your pickup with Bruno Stow-Away transfer seat to easily reach the truck cab. Hidden in a weather protected drawer, the Stow-Away is revealed at the press of a button and raises to your desired transfer height. Slide on to the Stow-Away and you’re in the perfect position to connect your wheelchair, scooter or power chair to Bruno’s rugged Outrider lift, designed specifically for pickup trucks.

Bruno Out-Rider

Press a button and the Out-Rider gently swings from the truck bed to the front cab. Connect the docking clip to your mobility device, press the control and the Outrider smoothly lifts, rotates and lowers a mobility device weighing up to 350 pounds, or 159 kilograms into the truck bed. When your mobility device is secure, continue raising the Stow-Away to the cab. Once you’re situated, press a button and the Stow-Away once again disappears.

 

Bruno Curb-Sider

In addition to the Outrider, Bruno’s popular Curb-Sider gives you another choice for lifting and loading mobility devices into a truck bed. Connect the docking device from the curb or bumper, press the control, and the Curb-Sider handles the rest. The Curb-Sider takes up a small amount of space, yet it’s heavy duty enough to lift scooters or power chairs weighing up to 400 pounds, or 181 kilograms.

Bruno Out-Sider

Want to preserve all your truck’s cargo space? Consider Bruno’s hitch mounted Out-Sider that carries a mobility device behind the truck. Drive a scooter or power chair onto the platform, press the control, and the Outsider lifts it into position for transport. The easy to use Out-Sider accommodates up to 350 pounds, or 159 kilograms. Add an optional swing-away to gain easy access to the tailgate.

Valet Seat for Trucks

Bruno Valet

Get into your truck cab in comfort with Bruno’s Valet Plus turning seat. At the press of a button, the luxury quality Valet Plus power rotates, extends and lowers. Take a seat and you’re raised into the cab in one smooth motion. Both Bruno’s Valet Plus and Stow-Away accessible seating options, and Outrider and Curb-Sider lifts can be installed on your truck’s driver or passenger side.

It’s also likely your Bruno accessible seating or mobility device lift can be reinstalled in your next pickup to insure long lasting value. Let Bruno’s accessible truck solutions help you keep the freedom and flexibility of the truck you love.

medical ramp

Exploring Types Of Wheelchair Ramps (Part 2)

medical ramp

Approximately 53 million Americans live with a disability, and according to a recent study, the most common disability is associated with limited mobility. In the last post, we discussed some of the most common types of wheelchair ramps for stairs, vehicles, and entryways. However, it’s important to have a full understanding of each type of mobility ramp in order to make the best decision for your mobility needs. Here’s part two of our guide that will explore some other common types of wheelchair ramps.

Modular Wheelchair Ramps

Modular Ramps
Modular ramps are a popular alternative to other types of fixed ramps because of the lack of maintenance required to keep them safe and operable. Unlike some other types of ramps, modular ramps also don’t require a builder’s permit to install. These semi-permanent ramps are constructed of sturdy aluminum and often come with handrails to optimize safety and user-friendliness.

Tri-fold wheelchair ramps

Trifold Ramps
Trifold ramps are similar to suitcase ramps in the sense that they’re portable and easy to store. The main difference, however, is that trifold ramps close into three sections as opposed to simply folding in half. This means that a longer ramp can be folded and carried in the same amount of space. These ramps are typically ideal for vehicles or larger sets of stairs. Like many other types of ramps, they’re constructed of high-grade aluminum and are very durable. The average length of these ramps is between five and 10 feet.

Custom Wheelchair Ramps

Custom Ramps
Sometimes, these common types of ramps aren’t quite suitable for certain unique circumstances and situations. In these cases, you may need a professional to design a custom ramp for your home, staircase, or vehicle. These ramps can be permanently installed and have optional handrails and other safety features. Commercial and industrial spaces sometimes need custom ramps in order to properly accommodate their business setups and ensure that they’re up to accessibility standards and handicap ramp specifications.

According to AARP and the National Conference of State Legislatures, 90% of people over the age of 65 want to live in their home as long as they can. Knowing the difference between the various types of mobility ramps can ensure maximum mobility for years to come. For more information about medical ramps, contact Access NSM.

wheelchair ramps

Exploring Types Of Wheelchair Ramps (Part 1)

wheelchair ramps

Approximately 6.8 million Americans use assistive devices to aid their mobility. Some of the most common devices are wheelchairs and wheelchair ramps. However, there are a number of different wheelchair ramps with differing designs, functions, and features, and understanding the qualities of each type is the key to making an informed decision about your mobility needs. Here’s part one of our guide that will explore some of the many different types of wheelchair ramps.

Wheelchair Suitcase Ramps

Suitcase Ramps
Suitcase ramps are, much like their name implies, known for being portable. They’re lightweight and very compact — not to mention, they typically have all the durability of traditional wheelchair ramps. Suitcase ramps can easily fold up like a suitcase to simplify the storage and transportation processes while helping to provide full mobility. Plus, suitcase ramps are designed in a number of different sizes and can typically hold up to 800 pounds. Ideal for small stairways or larger sets of steps, these ramps are certainly among the most versatile wheelchair ramp styles.

Wheelchair threshold ramps

Threshold Ramps
Threshold ramps are a small and compact type of ramp that certainly pack a punch. Since they’re not very high off of the ground, they may not seem to do much, but in reality, they make it exponentially easier for those with limited mobility to travel between indoor and outdoor areas using a wheelchair. They’re usually made of aluminum and come in various sizes. These ramps allow users to roll over any bumps easily and can fit against various door frames, sliding doors, and other raised landings.

telescoping wheelchair ramps

Telescoping Track Ramps
Finally, telescoping track ramps are constructed of high-grade aluminum with a non-skid coating. These mobility ramps are designed to assist those with limited mobility with entering and exiting various vehicles. Although relatively easy to set up and use, these medical ramps can sometimes be a bit difficult to use, specifically when aligning the ramp’s tracks with the wheelchair’s wheels.

According to HomeAdvisor’s 2016 Aging in Place Report, home service professionals say the top aging-in-place projects they’ve been hired to do include installing grab bars (71%) and adding entryway wheelchair ramps (54%). Understanding the many types of wheelchair ramps for stairs, vehicles, and entryways can help you make the best choices for your mobility needs. Keep an eye out for the next post, where we’ll discuss some other common types of wheelchair ramps.

bathroom safety

Guide To Preventing Bathroom Injuries: Part 2

In the last post, we discussed some basic bathroom safety tips designed to maximize mobility and elderly independence. Every year, over two million senior citizens visit the emergency room for injuries caused by a fall, and it’s important to have an understanding of all the ways to make your bathroom safer in order to determine which tips are right for you. Here’s part two of our guide to preventing bathroom injuries.

Ensure Adequate Seating
Having enough places to sit is essential to creating a handicap accessible bathroom that those will all mobility levels can safely and easily use. Adding a seat somewhere around your sink or vanity area gives those with limited mobility the option to sit down when performing everyday tasks like brushing their teeth. Similarly, installing some sort of shower seating allows you to sit down if you need to take a short break or need to perform a certain task easier. When it comes down to it, optimizing your bathroom’s seating options is one of the best ways to prevent falls and other accidents.

Don’t Neglect Lighting
Having adequate lighting is essential to preventing falls, especially in the bathroom. Make sure that your bathroom’s lights are bright enough to illuminate all areas of your bathroom. Adding a mirror can help reflect more light and illuminate areas that the lights may not naturally reach. And of course, make sure to install some sort of night light as well. When using the bathroom during the middle of the night, turning the full lights on can hurt the eyes of those with light sensitivities, and offering a simple nighttime solution like a night light ensures maximum safety and comfort.

Raise Toilet Height
Finally, if you or your loved one with limited mobility have trouble going from a standing to a sitting position and back again, raising the height of your toilet by even a few inches can drastically help to improve mobility and reduce the chance of a bathroom fall.

Ultimately, understanding these bathroom safety tips can help you or your loved one with limited mobility stay as safe and comfortable in the bathroom as possible. For more information about how to maximize elderly independence, contact AccessNSM.

bathroom safety

Guide To Preventing Bathroom Injuries: Part 1

Approximately 53 million Americans live with a disability, and according to a recent study, the most common disability is associated with limited mobility. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for those with limited mobility to complete necessary tasks, such as using the bathroom. Each year, nearly 235,000 people experience injuries in the bathroom, according to the United States Center For Disease Control and Prevention. Fortunately, there are many precautions that those with limited mobility can take to minimize their chances of sustaining injuries in the bathroom. Here’s part one of our guide to preventing bathroom injuries.

Invest In Grab Bars
First, grab bars are some of the most popular devices designed to enhance bathroom safety and mobility. In fact, according to HomeAdvisor’s 2016 Aging in Place Report, home service professionals say the top aging-in-place projects they’ve been hired to do include installing grab bars (71%) and adding entryway wheelchair ramps (54%). When installing bathroom grab bars, make sure to use solid screws as opposed to simply nailing them into the drywall. And of course, always test them for stability and durability by putting your weight on them. They need to be able to truly prevent you from falling and should not budge at all.

Avoid Slippery Floors
It’s easy to fall and injure yourself on floors that are slick and slippery. Make sure to put down some sort of absorbent mat outside your shower or bathtub and do your best to keep your floors dry. It’s a good idea to get mats that have a non-slip grip on the bottom, and of course, make sure it’s large enough to keep excess water contained and your bathroom floors dry.

Add a Walk-In Shower
If you currently have a tub with a high edge, it definitely increases the risk of slipping and falling while entering and exiting. A safer option is to eliminate the need to step over any type of edge and opt for an edgeless shower. Walk-in showers are much safer and reduce the risk of falls related to getting in and out.

Ultimately, understanding these bathroom safety tips can help you prevent injuries and maximize the safety of your bathroom. Keep an eye out for the next post, where we’ll discuss even more bathroom safety tips designed to optimize mobility and elderly independence.

AccessNSM California and Utah

AccessNSM Expands Out West To Utah and California

AccessNSM California and Utah

AccessNSM is excited to announce we have expanded out west!  We are now offering home accessibility products such as stairlifts, wheelchair ramps, platform lifts, door openers, patient lifts and other accessibility product solutions in California and Utah. Many of the branches also provides vehicle accessibility products by Bruno and Harmar.

AccessNSM, a division of National Seating and Mobility, focuses on providing complete accessibility solutions for mobility scooter and wheelchair users as well as those with limited mobility. Our business model provides a unique perspective over all other accessibility providers as our expertise level includes providing residents with high end, complex rehab products, via our National Seating and Mobility parent company. Our AccessNSM team offers free, no-obligation, home and vehicle assessments.  For more information, contact a local branch in Utah or California: