Is your loved one having trouble going up and down the stairs? Do you want to maintain the independence of your older adult at home, giving him/her the feeling that he/she can do anything? Then it is time to bring home a stairlift. With age, mobility becomes a concern. And if attention is not paid, they are prone to trip and fall, which may ultimately lead to serious injuries. Thus, you would not want to take any chances. With that said, we have created this ultimate guide for buying the best chair lifts for stairs with the top 10 products reviewed. Go through this guide to determine what you should really look for in a stairlift.
Let’s jump right into it.
Table of Contents
- Top 10 Best Chair Lifts for Stairs
- 1. Universal Stair Lift – Best quality stairlifts
- 2. Nautilus Stair Lift – Best stairlift for narrow stairs
- 3. Harmar Stair Lift – Best stairlifts for homes
- 4. Happybuy Stair Climbing Wheelchair – Best stairlifts for curved stairs
- 5. MS3C-300TSB Battery Powered Stair Evacuation Chair – best cheap stairlifts
- 6. AmeriGlide Horizon Stair Lift
- 7. LINE2design EMS Stair Chair
- 8. Generic EMS Stair Chair
- 9. Chariot-Vantage Stair Lift
- 10. Harmar Outdoor Stair Lift
- Factors to Consider While Buying Best Stairlifts
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Final Words
Top 10 Best Chair Lifts for Stairs
After thorough research, we have shortlisted the following 10 stairlifts for you. Look into it and then make an informed decision.
1. Universal Stair Lift – Best quality stairlifts
Universal Lifts is an emerging brand, and it is surprising to see how quickly it was able to reach out to the hearts of its audience. It is marketed as “Made in America!” product and thus, the reason why people love it more and more. The Universal Stair Lift is the best product for maintaining independence in the face of balance issues or aging. This unit is equipped with three safety features and can accommodate up to 350 pounds capacity. So, you or your loved one don’t have to worry about safety when taking a ride on this stairlift.
The best feature of this stairlift is its design. You can fold the foot pan flat to the wall so that you can go up or come down the stairs without a hassle. It comes with a 15-ft track, making it great for single floor installation. The best part, there is a wireless remote controller that allows you to operate the stairlift with just your fingers. You can rotate the stairlift from 25°-45° based on your requirements.
Last but not least, the Universal Stair Lift comes with an internal rechargeable battery that has enough power to bring you up and down at least 20 times in the events of a power outage.
Recommended For: Those who feel going up and down the stairs is a hassle of a task should get this unit.
- It comes with a long 15-ft track
- The unit folds up flat to the wall for convenience
- There are 3 separate safety mechanisms
- It can be installed on either side of the stairs
- It comes with internal rechargeable battery backup
- Some users have complained about its hard-to-follow instructions
2. Nautilus Stair Lift – Best stairlift for narrow stairs
When we talk about high-end stairlifts, Nautilus Stair Lift tops the list. It is a top-of-the-range unit that features worm drive technology. It works smoothly even after years of use. Unlike other stairlifts, this unit is mounted on steps instead of a wall. While it is expensive, it requires very little maintenance and takes very little space than other stairlifts when installed.
Unlike many other stairlifts, this unit doesn’t operate by rack and pinion. Nautilus Stair Lift uses a motor and a circuit board, which is relatively modern and convenient. With that said, you don’t have to worry about your carpet or floor getting all stained and greased. It is equipped with a rechargeable battery unit that helps it move upward and downward.
The primary reason why more and more people buy this stairlift is the fact that it comes with a lifetime manufacturing warranty. It is a one-time investment. This should tell you how sturdy and durable this unit is. It offers additional convenience as you can fold it up to 10.5 inches.
Recommended For: Those homes with narrow stairways this is the best stairlift for narrow stairs as it doesn’t take up all the space available.
- Comes with a lifetime warranty
- The foldable allows for convenience when walking up and down the stairs
- Grease-free – won’t leak grease or oils to your floor
- The unit is extremely durable
- It is one of the most comfortable stairs lifts available
- This unit is highly expensive
3. Harmar Stair Lift – Best stairlifts for homes
When we talk about electric stair lifts, nothing can beat the convenience and performance of Harmar Stair Lift. For starters, this unit is entirely AC-powered. That means it doesn’t require any battery for operation. Most people prefer this type of stairlift due to this convenience since they don’t need to bother about purchasing a charger or a progressively weakening battery. Simply plug its cord into the electric socket, and it is ready to use.
Why this is considered one of the best units available in the fact that unlike your average stairlifts, it is mounted on the steps instead of the railing or wall, this saves up additional space. Moreover, the seat and footrest offer the utmost comfort, and you can fold them up when not in use. This ultimately decreases the space it covers on the stairs.
The best part, the Harmar Stair Lift, is available in different color options. So, you can choose one according to the interior décor of your house.
It is a durable stairlift with a maximum capacity of up to 350 pounds, providing excellent value for money.
Recommended For: If you are a budget-conscious customer, then this unit from Harmar will best suit your needs.
- The folded seat and footrest make it easy to store when not in use
- The rocker controls prevent any type of uneasiness
- Constant power functionality makes it run 24/7
- Wide and spacious seat adds to the comfort of the user
- Lifetime manufacturing warranty provided
- It lacks the aesthetics
4. Happybuy Stair Climbing Wheelchair – Best stairlifts for curved stairs
If you don’t want to install a stairlift to your staircase permanently but are looking for something that can help you or your loved one to climb the stairs without any hassle, then this is one of the best stairlift chairs from Happybuy you should buy. Unlike your traditional wheelchairs, it is designed especially for climbing stairs. Those with mobility issues, who can’t operate a stairlift and requires additional support, may find this climbing wheelchair highly useful.
This unit is composed of an aluminum a+carbon steel structure, making it durable and safe. Moreover, it features a weight range of up to 400 pounds. So, it makes it practical for users of different sizes to use this unit.
When we talk about the design of this stair climbing wheelchair from Happybuy, it can be used as both a wheelchair and a stretcher. Its compact folding design makes it easy to store and transport. It has a flexible front handle, which comes in handy when using the unit as a stretcher.
Last but not least, it promises intelligent operation. An electromagnetic brake for safe and immediate stoppage is also installed. There are three control buttons – the green button is for going downstairs, a yellow one for going upstairs, and the red button for meeting an emergency.
Recommended For: Those who aren’t mobile enough to operate a stairlift and need an extra set of hands for going upstairs and downstairs should get this unit.
- It has diverse applications – can be used as a stretcher
- The foldable structure allows for easy storage and portability
- High-capacity battery works efficiently
- It is safe and easy to control
- It has incredible weight capacity – 400 pounds
- May require an extra set of hands while operating
5. MS3C-300TSB Battery Powered Stair Evacuation Chair – best cheap stairlifts
The MS3C-300TSB Battery Powered Stair Evacuation Chair is suitable for use at home for supported mobility up plus down the stairs. This unit is designed for safe and fast stair evacuation in both commercials as well as residential settings. People who have stairlifts at home also use this stair wheelchair for its added benefits. For starters, it is not just restricted to a particular staircase. It is helpful if you have an elderly at home with mobility issues.
The unit is constructed using aluminum metal and boasts a powder-coated frame for extra sturdiness. It is entirely electric powered and thus, reduces caregiver injury. This is because the unit replaces manual lifting with electric functioning. Moreover, there is an additional locking guide handles for added safety while lifting.
There are four in-swiveling front castors for increased range of motion. And the best part, these front castor wheels offer sharper turn radius for use in cramped spaces.
What you will like the most about the MS3C-300TSB Battery Powered Stair Evacuation Chair is its design. This evacuation chair will not take up much space in your home. The foldable design allows you to store the unit conveniently.
Recommended For: Multi-storey residential and commercial buildings where evacuating individuals with mobility issues is difficult.
- Retractable stable footrest for added comfort and safe transport
- Grease-free maintenance – no spoiling your floor
- It has telescopic lift handles for easy maneuvering
- Easy-to-read color-coded navigation buttons for the users
- 4-point patient harness included
- The battery on/off switch is the underside of the battery at the bottom of the unit, which is hard to find
6. AmeriGlide Horizon Stair Lift
AmeriGlide is a renowned brand that manufactures a variety of lift units. The AmeriGlide Horizon Stair Lift is one of the top considerations for people who are looking to save money on an expensive home modification. It is the most budget-friendly and necessary stairlift that has a capacity of 300 pounds. The AmeriGlide Horizon Stair Lift is the best stairlift for curved stairs where the chair needs to be moved out of the way for individuals going up and down.
This unit comes with safety sensors, pressure control, armrests, and a manual swivel seat. It boasts an effortless design, which is easy to use and install. The best part, this unit is even customizable to convene your different needs. It comes with a 14.75-feet standard track, but if your staircase is more significant than this, then you will need to buy additional rails.
Recommended For: Those who weigh less doesn’t necessarily rely on stairlifts for going up and down.
- This innovative model can be installed on steep landings and staircases up to an angle of 55°
- Lever operated footrest and seat for convenience
- It boasts a digital diagnostic display
- A Sturdy lap belt is included for safety
- Comfortable seat makes going up and down a pleasure
- Plastic rollers quickly wear out and are hard to lubricate
7. LINE2design EMS Stair Chair
If you are looking for a less complex design with no technical features but gets the job done, then the LINE2design EMS Stair Chair is the right fit for. It is a convenient model that boasts a sturdy aluminum construction, giving the chair unrivaled durability and superior performance. The chair may look any other normal wheelchair, but its ultra-grade construction gives it strength to accommodate up to 400 pounds of weight, which is impressive. Thus, this stair chair is ideal for all types of people.
The LINE2design EMS Stair Chair delivers convenience and comfort to the caregiver and the patient. Due to its foldable design, it is easy to carry and store. This is the primary reason why this chair preferred during most rescue operations by the firefighters. Even ambulances carry this model for hassle-free transfer of patients during emergencies. The non-slip grips offer convenience to the caregivers while pushing the users in cases of emergency.
Recommended For: While it is excellent for home use for easy transfer of the patient from up to down, those involved in rescue operations will find this model at the utmost convenience.
- It only weighs 21 pounds
- It is convenient to store and is portable
- The unit comes with adjustable straps
- The telescopic front handles make it easy to maneuver.
- Molded handgrips maintain the grip of the caregiver
- Users cannot alone operate this unit. Someone reliable is needed to carry the patient up and down
8. Generic EMS Stair Chair
If you are looking for a practical yet pocket-friendly solution when it comes to a stair chair, this generic EMS stair chair is one of the best stairlifts for homes. Due to its simple design, it is the choice of stair chair for many rescue operators. This model incorporates sturdy aluminum alloy construction for extra durability. The wheels are sturdy enough, and the whole framework is designed in such a way that it can easily carry a human being who is up to 400 pounds
Now don’t think that since it has excellent weight capacity, it will be hard to move around. This unit includes a lightweight construction. Don’t be surprised when we tell you that it only weighs 20 pounds. So, firefighters, paramedics, and other rescue mission operators always include this unit with them.
Some attractive features of this EMS stair chair include three adjustable straps with unique, quick-release technology. Anyone with mobility issues benefits the most from this feature. Moreover, it also boasts non-slip handles for added safety and secure handling. The best part, the compact folding design of this stair chair, allows you to store it anywhere in your house, even in your vehicle. It doesn’t take much of your space.
Recommended For: Those with mobility issues may need constant visits to the doctor. Having this model at your hand is always convenient to make the transfer easier.
- The unit is incredibly lightweight
- Durable and dependable – high strength aluminum alloy construction
- Equipped with non-slip handles for added safety
- The unit is easy to clean and maintain
- Easy to store – perfect for home use
- The quality of large metal zippers may tend to wear off
9. Chariot-Vantage Stair Lift
The Chariot-Vantage Stair Lift is an excellent option for those who are looking for a lift but with a simplistic design. Unlike your regular stairlifts, it boasts a rack and pinion drive system.
Moreover, the motor comes with a speed regulator, allowing the user to adjust the speed of going up and down the stairs. Since it uses a drive system, it requires proper greasing and oiling. To prevent the grease and oil from messing up your floor or carpet, the manufacturer has included a cover on top of the gear.
The Chariot-Vantage Stair Lift is battery powered. That means it will continue operating even during a power outage. This unit can carry up to the maximum weight of 300 pounds and can be folded to a compact 13.6 inches for convenience when not using the machine.
The seat is comfortable, and it comes with armrests as well. The unit is operated using two wireless remotes. The remotes are simple, allowing even elderly people to use them without any confusion.
Recommended For: Those who are restricted in staircase space can definitely reap benefits out of this unit from Chariot.
- This stairlift is easy to install
- It comes with a speed regulator – you can adjust the speed
- It is battery powered
- It adds to the aesthetics of your house
- The unit is cost-effective
- Uses oil and grease
10. Harmar Outdoor Stair Lift
Last in our list is the outdoor stairlift from Harmar. Well, this is the only outdoor stairlift we have included on our list. If you or your loved one has immense mobility issues that even climbing a few steps seems daunting, then we suggest you install Harmar Outdoor Stair Lift. What’s unique about this stairlift is that it is entirely weatherproof, thanks to the cover included. It works similar to your indoor stairlift but has additional features incorporated for outdoor use.
For starters, there are rocker controls that come with constant-pressure functionality, which comes in handy if you want to stop the lift immediately. It runs on standard 115 VAC household current. The unit mounts on the steps/stairs and not on the wall. The best part, the extruded heavy-duty aluminum track is available in custom lengths.
Since it is an outdoor stairlift, the manufacturer has included different color variations to this unit so that it doesn’t harm the outdoor aesthetics of your house.
Recommended For: Those who find climbing the outdoor steps to enter the house difficult should install this outdoor stairlift.
- This stairlift comes with weatherproof covers
- There are rocker controls for accessible lifts
- The unit runs on standard household current
- It is available in different color schemes
- It is best used for outdoor stairs
- Will not operate without power
Factors to Consider While Buying Best Stairlifts
For those who have difficulty navigating stairs, a stairlift is a cost-effective solution. However, since there are plenty of models available, it becomes challenging to choose one that suits your requirements. Those who have mobility issues, such as older adults, getting up and down the stairs can be difficult. They are even prone to trip and fall, which can cause some serious injuries. Thus, it is essential to choose the right stairlift for your loved one. With that said, in this section, we will point out the things that you need to consider when buying a stairlift.
Let’s get started.
Mobility of the user
First and foremost, you need to consider the mobility of the user before making a buying decision. You need to understand the needs of the user. Whether the user can operate the stairlift, or will he/she need some kind of assistance, everything will go into consideration.
Type of Staircase
Next, you need to consider the type of staircase you have in your house. There are basically two types of staircases –
Curved staircases have turns and immediate landings. Thus, they require a curved rail stairlift. Straight staircases, on the other hand, have turns, curves, or quick landings. It is straight and boasts standardized tracks. The curved staircase is recommended if it requires the user to get off the lift and climb on another one to go upstairs.
The most important aspect of a stairlift is its weight capacity. Some stairlifts can accommodate up to 500 pounds. The standard stairlifts have 300 pounds of weight capacity. The weight capacity is the weight of the user who will be using the stairlift. So, keep this in mind before buying any stairlift.
Safety, Comfort, and Convenience
These three aspects act as the thin line between buying a stairlift and not buying a stairlift. The stairlift you purchase must come with additional safety features like extra belts, support, and harnesses. When we talk about comfort, the stairlift must possess super comfortable seating and armrests. For convenience, the stairlift must not use up all the staircase space, hindering people from going up and down the stairs. The stairlift must be foldable to the extent that it can provide enough room for people to go up and down without any hassle.
Last but not least, how much are you willing to spend on a stairlift plays a crucial part in which model you should get. There are mechanical stair wheelchairs available as low as under $1000. And some stairlifts can cost as high as $10,000. You need to set your budget based on your requirements.
Frequently Asked Questions
These are the most asked questions on the web regarding stairlifts:
How much do stairlifts cost?
It depends on the brand you are considering. However, you should budget anywhere from $2000 to $6000, especially if you want a brand-new model. However, if you are considering a used model, the price may halve down.
How do stairlifts work?
The stairlift goes up and down the staircase when the user pushes and holds the operating button. Once the lift reaches the end of the track, it will beep and stop automatically. Since the track is attached to the stairs and not walls, the movement of the lift will not cause any harm to the wall.
How are stairlifts powered?
Stairlifts either use rechargeable batteries for operation or gets its power from the standard VAC current. One of the benefits of using battery-powered stairlifts is that the stairlift will keep on functioning even during a power outage. You cannot use a VAC powered stairlift if there is no power.
Can a stairlift be changed from left to right?
Since stairlifts are mounted on rails that are attached to stairs, it is difficult to change the mount position without professional help. The track is fixed, and hence you cannot change the stairlift from left to right. So, before you install the stairlift, you should consider your preferred position.
Can a stairlift be used outside?
Of course, a stairlift can be used outside. Some stairlifts come with unique weatherproof covers to protect the unit from the outside environment.
Does stairlift use a lot of electricity?
You may notice a significant change in your home’s electricity bill after installing a stairlift. While a stairlift is energy efficient and may only use 0.024kWh electricity, there will be a slight rise in your electricity bill – say up to $15 per year.
How to speed up a stairlift?
While stairlifts come with their pre-defined speed settings, if you want to increase or decrease its speed, you can use a non-linear control. However, nowadays, these lifts come with remote controls that have different speed settings.
This was our comprehensive guide to buying the best chair lifts for stairs. All the products mentioned in this post are reviewed after thorough research and feedback from the real users. There are plenty of different models available as well, which you should look into. We hope that you find this article informative. If you have any queries regarding the products discussed, feel free to contact us.
Last update on 2020-06-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API