Apr 30

Home elevators always inspire quite a bit of interest, sometimes just for the novelty of the idea. We’d all love to have an elevator at home even if we don’t really need one. But there are some people that actually need an elevator to move between floors in a wheelchair. Without space to create an elevator shaft though, is the idea of a home elevator possible? Enter the Telecab Elevator.

Telecab Elevator

The Telecab Elevator maximizes space in the home because it does not have a shaft. It is sometimes referred to as a “shaftless or vanishing elevator” because when it is in the “up” position sitting on the top floor, there is no evidence of it on the downstairs floor. The same is true when it is parked downstairs. The upstairs floor space isn’t eaten up by the shaft of a regular elevator.

A Telecab is convenient because you can send it to a different floor when it isn’t needed and then call it back when you do. The entire unit recesses into the floor or ceiling. They have many safety features as well as conveniences such as an in-elevator phone if needed for emergencies.

Many new homes are being built using Universal Design techniques. One such technique is to put a closet on the upstairs floor directly above a closet on the floor below. This creates space to add an elevator shaft at some point in the future. Many Universal Designed homes just put the elevator in when the house is built because they are so convenient to have in the home. But some people don’t need one yet so they prepare for the possibility of adding one when they get older and need it.

For those who live in older homes before Universal techniques were created, it can be a bit more work to add an elevator, especially if there isn’t space for the shaft. A Telecab Elevator might be an option for those who have the need but can’t sacrifice the space.

Give us a call if you’d like more information about a Telecab Elevator in southern California at (310) 215-3332.

Apr 11

Abilities Expo Los Angeles 2011

The Abilities Expo returns to Los Angeles this year and runs from Friday, April 15 thru Sunday, April 17, 2011 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Accessible Design & Consulting will be available all three days in Booth #441 so stop by and say Hi.

If you’ve never been to the Abilites Expo and have a disability or know somebody who does, you should really check it out for at least part of a day.

Accessible Design & Construction

Manufacturers, vendors, and service companies are available to show off the latest equipment and gadgets for people with disabilities. This is your chance to see what can help you be more independent, try out products you’ve heard about and ask questions about products and home modifications.

We will have our most popular items on hand to see how they actually work up close (Toilevator, Collapsible Water Retainer, Transport / Companion Chair). We will also be available to answer questions about home modifications or schedule appointments.

We hope to see you there!

Abilities Expo Los Angeles

Apr 7

We perform hundreds of home modifications throughout the year and a frequently asked question we get during assessments is, “What is better, a home elevator or a home stairlift for getting upstairs?

There are many factors that dictate the decision of choosing between a home elevator or a stairlift for independent living. Many people naturally assume that cost is the biggest factor, and sometimes it is an issue, but other times the cost can be pretty similar when you examine all the variables.

Home Stairlift - curved stair lift

A curved stairlift for the home

Our experience shows that it depends on the nature of the disability and how it will change in the future.

Some disabilities change very slowly and may not progress much in the next few years. Some actually get better through rehab.

Others, like ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease), will change dramatically over time. A stairlift may help initially when symptoms are minor, but as the symptoms change and a wheelchair is needed full-time, the stairlift becomes more of a hassle than it is useful.

Sure, installing a home elevator is more expensive than installing a home stairlift. But the extra expense of the elevator is worth it when you factor in things like wear on the user and caregiver, efficiency, and comfort.

If the user can walk and only needs some help getting up and down the stairs, a stairlift is a very good solution. But if a wheelchair is needed full-time for getting around, an elevator will start to look more appealing.

Home Elevator

Building the shaft of the home elevator

Consider the full-time wheelchair user. You roll up to the stairway at the bottom of the stairs, do a transfer to the stairlift, go up and transfer to another wheelchair upstairs. This means two wheelchairs are needed (one for each floor), possibly two transfer boards, and maybe a caregiver to help with both transfers. This can be time consuming and hard on the user and caregiver.

With a home elevator, only one wheelchair is needed, no transfers or transfer boards, and no wear and tear on the user or caregiver. Just roll into the elevator on one floor and roll out when you reach the other floor. Safe, simple, and convenient.

Considering the expense of two wheelchairs and transfer boards, the cost of a home elevator looks better. If the stairway has turns and a curved stairlift will be needed, depending on the number of turns, the home elevator may be fairly close to being the same cost as the stairlift.

Because every disability and home layout is unique, it’s important to consider all of the factors before deciding on which will work best. Whether you need a home elevator or a stairlift, it’s important to find the best solution for your needs, not only now but in the years to come.

If you’re considering a home elevator or a home stairlift, give us a call Toll-Free at (866) 902-9800.

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