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The Stair Walker -> Buyer’s Guide: Choose The Right Stair Chair Lift

Buyer’s Guide: How To Choose The Right Stair Chair Lift

Lift for stairs
Chair lift
At one point or another the stairs at home may become challenging to manage due to limited mobility or a significant injury. In this case, a stair chair lift may be the ideal solution.

There are quite a lot of different models available and options to choose from, which can make the research process seem overwhelming at first. You may not know where to begin and may be unaware of the aspects that are most important when choosing a stair chair lift.

In this article, we will show you how to choose the right stair chair lift in just 5 steps. These 5 steps will facilitate the process and help you in choosing the right solution for yourself or a family member.

In 5 Steps To Your Stair Chair Lift

1. What are my mobility needs right now and in the future?

2. What type of Stair Chair Lift do I need?

3. Is a Stair Chair Lift the right solution for me?

4. What features am I looking for in a Stair Chair Lift?

5. Are there more suitable solutions for me?

1. What are my mobility needs right now and in the future?

Sadly, one in four adults in the US who are aged 65 and over, suffers a fall every year. On top of that, falls are the leading cause of fatal injuries in seniors, according to the CDC.

If your physical health and mobility is in decline, you are most likely at a higher risk of experiencing falls, both at home and outside your own home. Stairs specifically, may pose a considerable risk to anyone who struggles with mobility issues.

Apart from the risk of falling, there may also be the issue that you simply can’t navigate walking the stairs up and down without support. You may be able to walk on flat surfaces with no or little assistance, yet using the stairs poses a big problem. There are mobility solutions, such as canes and walkers, which are ideal for use on flat surfaces but are not suitable for the use on stairs.

As most seniors prefer aging-in-place, figuring out what your own needs and wishes are in regards to a stair chair lift are therefore imperative.

The user's height, weight and mobility are the most important factors when it comes to choosing the right mobility aid for your stairs.

A stair chair lift is a motorized device that transports you between floors while you are seated. Unlike home lifts or stair climbing aids, a stair chair lift transports you along the stairs on a railing that is specifically fitted to the steps of the stairs.

Stair chair lifts can typically be separated into two groups of either straight stair lifts or curved stair lifts. The latter are usually custom made to fit exactly your staircase (and are therefore more expensive).

The stair chair lift moves between the floors at a pace of around 0,15 meters per second, which means the trip between your floors can take some time.

Stairlift space requirement
Stairlift space requirement
Video showing the typical speed of a stair chair lift

2. What type of Stair Chair Lift do I need?

The type of rail that will be needed for the stair chair lift is determined by the type of staircase you have in your home. If your staircase is straight with no intermediate landings or continuous inclination, you will need a standardized straight rail stair chair lift. If there are turns, curves, or intermediate landings, the rail for the stair chair lift will have to be customized to fit the exact specifications of your staircase.

Curved stair lift

3. Is a Stair Chair Lift the right solution for me?

This depends mostly on your own mobility. If you are still able to walk and only need a bit of support, you might not need a stair chair lift, but rather a stair walking aid like the AssiStep.

Read more about the AssiStep further down.

If you are in a wheelchair or are not able to walk anymore, a stair chair lift if the suitable solution for you.

Assi Step vs Stairlift

4. What features am I looking for in a Stair Chair Lift?

One of the most important considerations is whether or not the stair chair lift is a long term solution or only for a short term. Other considerations you should make, once you know what kind of stair chair lift is needed for your type of stairs, are:

  • Style of seat: One of the most important factors to make when choosing a stair chair lift is the seat as it is what you will interact with the most. There are collapsible seats, with or without armrests, with or without footrests, or seats that can swing around for a easier exit and entry.
  • How you fit the chair and how does the chair fit you: It is best to test drive several models to find out what type of seat suits you best and makes you most comfortable. There are stair chair lifts on the market with adjustable arms to provide extra room if you think it necessary.
  • Choose a brand you're comfortable with: Once you have analyzed your situation and your needs, the next step is to decide which stair chair lift providers you would like to invite for a consultation. Make sure to not rush into anything and look for a provider who can correctly assess your situation and who will respond to your concerns and wishes. In the best-case scenario, this creates a trusting customer relationship. A competent, reputable lift provider should offer you extensive advice on the type of lift and its installation options. Keep in mind that the provider should offer you a free consultation.
  • Check your surroundings: How to pick a stair chair lift also involves considering your stairs surroundings. If your stairs are less than 30 inches wide, there may not be enough clearance for your knees with a stair chair lift. If there are doors at the top/bottom of the stairs, you might need a specially made system. A respectable provider will offer you fitting solutions to your staircase.
  • Available options: With a number of manufacturers of stair chair lifts in the market, you'll find a variety of options for you to choose from, such as a manual or power folding rail, a power swivel seat, or a power-folding footrest. All of these options may enhance your experience of using the stair chair lift and may make using it more convenient.

5. Are there more suitable solutions for me?

AssiStep - affordable stairlift alternative
AssiStep - Affordable Stairlift Alternative

The best alternative to a stair chair lift is the stair climbing aid AssiStep.

Unlike stair chair lifts, the AssiStep enables its user to keep active and get the extra support that is needed to continue walking the stairs by using their own muscles. The AssiStep is also a less expensive solution, that takes up much less space. It is installed as a normal handrail, and extends less than 3,5 inches (9 cm) out from your wall.

What are the main advantages of the AssiStep compared to a stair chair lift?

  • Less expensive to buy and operate
  • No yearly service fees
  • Allows you to maintain active and promotes good health
  • Reliable and low service need, since it's a purely mechanical solution
  • Can be installed in both straight and curved stairs
  • Aesthetic Scandinavian design
  • Professional installation in a matter of hours
  • Stay active in the home you love
  • Gives you and your loved ones a peace of mind
  • No senior home needed
Discover the stair climbing aid AssiStep

Choose your AssiStep

Configure your AssiStep - in just a few steps!

What kind of stair do you have?


Who are you? Are you a private person or an institution that wants the AssiStep?


We need your postal code to find our nearest distributor and to calculate shipping and installation costs.

Because you have a different type of staircase, we would like to offer a house inspection to give you a price offer.

We are sorry to inform you that we don't have a supplier in the country you have chosen. You can still complete the form, and we will send you information about AssiStep.

On some occasions we need more information about your stairs. We therefore ask for your phone number so we can contact you if needed. We need the e-mail address in order to send you the offer and provide more information.

Please verify the information before you submit.

When you have submitted the form, you’ll receive an e-mail with more information about the AssiStep. Your information is safe with us, and we’ll only share it with our distributor in your country.
Thank you for the inquiry. You will soon receive an e-mail with more information, and we'll get in touch to give you a personal quote.