When you live in a mansion but need help getting up the several flights of stairs that make up your double winding staircases, lift chairs may be the answer. The installation of lift chairs is less expensive, less messy and less obnoxious than installing an elevator. Plus, you will never get stuck in a lift chair and not be able to get to the first floor. Given the design and escalation of your staircases in the grand foyer of your home, you may be wondering just how a lift chair would work. Here is how.
Lift Chair Rails Are Mounted to the Walls
Most people assume that lift chairs are mounted to tracks on the railings of your staircases. While this is certainly one way of installing a lift chair, it is actually better to mount the tracks straight to the wall. Then the lift chair follows the rails up using the walls as straight lines and support for the person in the chair. However, if you have double winding staircases going up and neither of the staircases are anywhere near a wall, the lift chair track will have to be custom made to fit your railings.
Custom Lift Chair Tracks
Custom lift chair tracks are made for railing systems that cannot accommodate the typical wall installation of the lift chair tracks. As such, the company that makes these custom tracks for your chair can make the tracks so that they blend int with the railings and do not unnecessarily blemish the appearance of such a grand staircase. The installation expert can match the metal and the color to the rest of the hardware on the railings. If you have all glass railings, other options may need to be discussed since the tracks cannot be attached to glass without the potential for shattering glass and causing injury.
Creating a Lift Chair Support Directly from the Floor to the Second Floor
All grand staircases have a little platform at the top of the first flight. You could create a custom support system that would traverse the ground floor to the second floor, thereby bypassing the need for walls or custom tracks to make your lift chair work. The only downside to this solution is that it may be difficult to unjam the lift chair from a position that dangles you between the ground floor and the second story. Such an incident would be very rare indeed, but it is something to consider if you are considering this lift chair remodeling option.