Transforming Multi-Level Homes: The Versatility of Residential Elevators in Wheelchair Accessibility

While stairs are okay for most individuals, sometimes multi-story homes need a more convenient way for residents to move safely and comfortably between floors. A custom residential elevator is an excellent solution for making your home more accessible.

Understanding Residential Elevators

Residential elevators are designed to help homeowners or other residents move between floors in homes. The machines are essential for people who face mobility troubles, such as those who use a wheelchair. There are two main types of residential elevators for accessibility:

  • Traction elevators: These elevators use a system of counterweights and cables to move the elevator shaft without needing excess energy or fluids. The traction method relies on the cab and counterweight to balance each other so that the elevator can move in the direction it needs to. 
  • Hydraulic elevators: Hydraulic elevators use a piston and pump system to move between floors. The piston connects to the elevator, while the pump unit is nearby in a separate machine room. When you use this type of elevator, the hydraulic system transports pressurized fluid to move the machine.

These two types of home elevators can help make your space more accessible, allowing you to stay in your home for a long time.

Planning for Accessibility

Designing homes for mobility troubles is vital for ensuring residents can continue living their best lives in their beloved homes. When planning to make your home more accessible by installing a residential elevator, ensure you are aware of the requirements and regulations you must follow for the installation. Careful consideration must also go into the design decisions so that the elevator is easy to use.

When planning the accessibility features for your home elevator, consider the following aspects:

  • Space: How much space is available in your home to install an elevator? You must determine where the machine will be installed and if there is enough room for the elevator shaft and its components, depending on the type of elevator you get.
  • Type of elevator: You must also decide whether you want a traction or hydraulic elevator. Working with professionals will help you determine which option will better suit your needs and the layout of your home.
  • Regulations: There are specific requirements and guidelines to follow when creating a wheelchair-friendly home design. Working with a professional elevator installation company is ideal, as you can trust that they know and will adhere to the local codes.
  • Safety features: You should consider safety factors for your home elevator, as well. The fixtures, like the buttons, handrails and emergency controls, should be installed at a height that works best with wheelchairs. To make the cabs more accessible, consider having doors and gates that open automatically. The doors should also have safety sensors that detect when people or objects are in the doorway, so they don't close on them.

Design Considerations

Once you have the basic plans for the initial construction of your new home elevator, you can focus on the machine's design. You likely want your elevator to reflect the design of your home's existing architecture and style. Fortunately, with custom residential elevators from Residential Elevators, you can choose home accessibility solutions that complement your space's design.

We can create custom residential elevators for accessibility to match styles like:

  • Traditional
  • Coastal
  • Modern
  • Minimalistic
  • Vintage
  • Fully custom

Residential Elevators can help create a wheelchair-friendly home elevator design and install it for you. With diverse customization capabilities and options, we will ensure you receive an elevator that meets your accessibility needs. Our team can include specific lighting, handrails, operating panels and gate options that will make accessing the elevator simple for everyone using it.

Elevator Maintenance and Upkeep

When designing your residential elevator, it's also important to consider the maintenance and upkeep required to keep the elevator functioning well throughout its lifetime. The elevator will play a significant part in aging in place if you install it in your forever home, so managing its upkeep will help you continue using it for a long time with peace of mind.

To ensure the longevity and optimal performance of your home elevator, practice maintenance tips like:

  • Follow the operating and safety rules: Make sure to follow the proper elevator safety rules so that you can maintain your machine's functionality and stay safe while riding it.
  • Stay within the weight limit: Residential elevators can only hold so much weight, so pay attention to how much weight you add to the elevator when using it.
  • Perform regular inspections: You can perform mini inspections each day you use the elevator by thinking about how well the machine is functioning. Look to see if there is any new interior damage, if the doors open and close properly, and if the buttons are working correctly.
  • Schedule professional maintenance: Get annual inspections and maintenance by professionals for your elevator to ensure it performs in top condition. These professionals will perform comprehensive inspections, checking every nook and cranny to ensure all the components are working properly.

Design Your Custom-Made Home Elevator With Residential Elevators

Make your home more accessible for yourself or loved ones who need additional supportive ways to get around their homes with an elevator. Residential Elevators can design an elevator to meet your accessibility needs, making your space a wheelchair-friendly environment.

Learn more about our custom home accessibility solutions and how you can start designing your residential elevator for accessibility when you contact us or request an estimate for your project today.