The process of installing a wheelchair ramp at home can be confusing, especially if you don’t know exactly what type of ramp will best suit your needs.
At EZ-ACCESS, we want the process to go as smoothly as possible, even before you choose what type of ramp to go with! Follow this guide to help you through the process.
Find the Best Ramp for Your Home
Where does one even start once they determine a wheelchair ramp is needed at home? Our first piece of advice is to answer these “getting started” questions so you know what you’re looking for in a ramp.
- What type of assistive mobility device is used? This is an important factor for choosing proper ramp width and slope.
- Will this device change over time? If the individual is using a walker now, but will eventually be in a wheelchair, you may want to consider a more permanent ramping solution.
- Which entrance to the house is most accessible and what obstacles, such as a set of stairs, do you need to overcome?
- What material do you want the ramp made of? Consider which is more important to you: Functionality or curb appeal?
- How permanent do you want the ramp to be? Will you need to move it later?
- How much time do you or your family have to invest in construction? Would you be better off with a professional wheelchair ramp installer?
- What is your budget? Will your insurance or Medicare benefits plan be able to assist you in covering the cost? If you’re not sure about how you will fund the ramp, check out our blog from last month on how to Get Funding for a Residential Wheelchair Ramp.
- Does your local municipality require a permit for a ramp? If so, what specifications are required?F
Map Out the Ramp Layout
The type of ramp and any customizations you may need will depend on the entrance point you choose. For homes that have one or two steps at the entrance, a shorter, portable ramp may be the simplest solution. But, if the entrance is higher, then you will likely need a more sizable ramp system.
Below we outline the key measurements to take into consideration when mapping out your ramp.
The higher the entrance, the longer the ramp should be in order to help maintain safety and a gradual slope.
To determine the ramp length, follow this guide:
- Confirm the necessary incline. Refer to your mobility equipment’s user guide for exact recommendations concerning acceptable usage and allowable slope. We also recommend checking with your local municipality to see if there are incline requirements.
- Measure the distance from the top step/landing to the ground (Rise).
- Enter the values in the EZACCESS Incline Calculator to determine the length of ramping needed.
When it comes to determining the ideal width of a wheelchair ramp, we not only recommend checking with your local municipality to see if there are ramp width requirements in place, but also measuring the size of the mobility device that is being used and the amount of room it takes for the individual to turn around. EZ-ACCESS residential ramps come in standard widths of 36” and 48” to accommodate most mobility devices.
Platforms are flat landing areas used to help individuals maneuver on and off the ramp with ease, and they also act as resting spots on longer ramp runs. In order to keep individuals safe and allow for comfortable ramp use, make sure you meet your local municipality’s requirements, if applicable. They may have requirements similar to the ADA (American’s with Disability Act), which states that a 60” x 60” platform needs to be at the top of every ramp and a resting platform needs to be present after every 30’ of ramp. After using the incline calculator for ramp length, you’ll know how many platforms are necessary for the ramp being installed at your home.
Order the Ramp
If you’re reading this article, we’re guessing you’re the type of individual that likes to do their research before making a big purchase! We don’t blame you. If you already know what type of ramp you will purchase, we commend you! If not, feel free to reach out to our Customer Service team and they can walk you through the process of exactly what ramp to buy and how to purchase.
Ramps you may consider ordering are:
- Portable Ramps for use at home or on the go
- Semi-permanent ramps for home access
- Long-term home access ramps for higher rises
Installation of EZACCESS ramps can be done by your dealer. The process is fairly simple and takes only a matter of hours, which means minimal disruption for you and your family.
After the secure setup, all that’s left to do is enjoy easy access at home!
If you have any additional questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out.