Types of Wheelchair and Scooter Lifts for Automobiles

Types of Wheelchair and Scooter Lifts for automobiles
Platform Wheelchair Lifts – There are both solid and folding platform lifts that can be subcategorized into automatic and semi-automatic types. An automatic lift will fold, unfold, lower and raise by operating a single switch. A semi-automatic lift requires manual folding and unfolding of the platform.

Rotary Wheelchair Lifts – The rotary wheelchair lift, sometimes called a “swing” lift, allows the wheelchair to be moved by swinging it inside, outside, and up-and-down. Normally used in vans and minivans.
Compatibility can be an issue when adding these types of lifts to an automobile. Choosing the type of operation, such as electric or hydraulic, will also vary depending on your location. Extreme climates and temperatures may also determine the type you need.

Wheelchair stair lifts have several disadvantages. The most important is that the user must be capable of transferring to the lift seat. An extra wheelchair is helpful at the top and bottom of the stair run within reach of the stair lift seat. Most are run on batteries, which are automatically recharged at the end of every trip.
Funding for your Wheelchair Lift
Your wheelchair lift dealer can assist you in your search for funding, but first you must realize that funding opportunities are unique from one individual to the next. If you’re a veteran, the Veteran Administration may have programs that cover all or part of your expenses, depending on the nature of your disability. Other state offices, including the Department of Vocational Rehabilitation or the Division of Developmental Services, should also be asked to assess your eligibility. And, of course, your insurance or workman’s compensation policies may include coverage for your type of disability.

Outside funding sources may help you reduce your own out-of-pocket expense, but don’t forget opportunities to further reduce your costs. Your doctor’s prescription, for example, may exempt your purchase from sales tax. Your accountant can address possibilities for income tax credits. And your vehicle’s manufacturer may offer valuable rebate or incentive programs that could have a significant impact on the final cost of your vehicle or conversion.
Manufacturers often offer rebates on new vehicle modifications. The companies below will often help.
Chrysler Corporation
Chrysler Automobility Program
800.225.9877
Ford Motor Corporation
Ford Mobility Motoring Program
800.952.2248
General Motors Corporation
GM Mobility Assistance Center
800.323.9935

The first consideration you must make when purchasing a wheelchair lift is whether you are able to transfer from your wheelchair or scooter to a vehicle, or if you prefer or need to remain in your chair while traveling.

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