Stair chair lifts

I am hoping to install a stair chair lift because of knee problems. Has anyone had experiences of these?

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Hello Diane

Welcome to the community.

Have a look at another topic Home Lifts / Elevators. Some of the advice in that topic will apply to installing a stair chair lift, such as looking at other custormers for reference, who else can service the device, etc.

When we went looking at options for my mother, we looked at stair chair lifts, and the quotes we received were pretty much on a par with an elevator/lift. It all depends on how many corners there are, how high the lift has to go, etc.

Also, think about how long you can/want to continue to live in a home that requires a chair lift. Will it be a worthwhile investment for that number of years?

I hope that helps.


Have seen outdoor lifts if not able to use stairs. Also ones for inside stairs. Not sure if inside ones, are very good surely does limit space when installed

I think an outdoor lift will need a planning/building approval from local council.

And yes, stair chair lifts reduce the available width of the stairs. This may not be an issue for walking up and down, but it may be a problem for moving furniture such as adjustable beds or even large chairs.


I remember when i was cleaning a person’s house previously they had a chair lift on the stairwell was never easy vacuum around it or cleaning.


Excellent point. That had not occurred to me.

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We are looking at an external lift to go from ground to front verandah. I don’t like stair lifts as they are difficult to pass when parked, can only transport one person, limited by the seat contours & arms for carrying goods and I’ve heard too many stories of people falling off them. A friend had to spend a lot of money doing alterations to make the stairs comply for installation, but is a fan of the Acorn stairlift. The choice may be limited by what the Govt will subsidise.

Stair lifts are limited - our friend has a wheelie walker which can’t be carried, so she has one for upstairs and one for downstairs. She has an able husband who can carry groceries upstairs, but if not, they they have a problem. Also consider wheelchairs, it will be hard to get in & out as some stairlifts stop on the top step leaving no flat surface for transfer, or swivel, so you have to back into them at the top of the stairs.

Our house is high-set with 18 stairs at the back and 6 at the front, but you have to negotiate a steep grassed hill to reach them. A lift from near the car port will get people and goods up to the front verandah where visitors can knock on the front door, and controls at the top and bottom for us to ferry goods. I think we need to extend the verandah roof to keep the rain off. Will let you know how we go with pricing and approvals.


If it’s a factor, I wonder what the total cost of ownership on stair lift vs elevator would be over its life e.g. scheduled preventative maintenance costs? I’m expecting to put in an elevator big enough for a wheel chair plus a companion person as the best investment to stay out of aged care for as long as possible.

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A post was merged into an existing topic: Setting your home up for older living

Noted previously there is a seperate discussion on personal/home elevators. To encourage the current discussion to stay ‘on topic’ of chair stair lifts, I’ve opened a broader topic in the Home Improvement category, link in my previous post. We’ve been around the loop recently personally and through the ongoing experiences of the extended family.

It’s best to plan ahead if possible rather than wait and hope the decisions is/are not forced outcomes.

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As I said at the top, have a look at the topic Home Lifts / Elevators for more information


We faced the option of a home move or a stair lift following a medical problem. The cost of an elevator into our house with concrete inter-floors was prohibitive. We opted for an internal stair lift. It only takes one person, but is a real life-saver. It requires 240 mm of the 950 mm stair width, but this is no problem. It includes one 180 degree and three 90 degree bends. Quoted, measured and installed in 3 weeks for under $17,000