Why You Can’t Modify a Straight Stairlift Rail To Fit a Curved Staircase
A straight stairlift rail is specifically designed for staircases that have a linear, unchanging incline without any bends, curves, or landings. These types of rails cannot be extended at the top landing for several reasons:
- Safety concerns: Extending a straight rail at the top landing could create an unsafe situation, as the stairlift user would need to maneuver the chair beyond the edge of the staircase, potentially leading to a risk of falling. The chair is designed to stop at the top step to ensure maximum safety for the user when transferring on and off the lift.
- Structural limitations: Straight stairlift rails are designed to follow a fixed, linear incline that matches the stairs’ angle. Trying to extend the rail at the top landing would require a change in the angle, which is beyond the capabilities of a straight rail system. Additionally, the weight distribution and support mechanisms for straight rails are engineered for a specific length and incline, so extending the rail at the top landing could compromise the system’s integrity and stability.
- Functionality: Extending a straight rail at the top landing could lead to difficulties in accessing the lift. In many cases, the top landing serves as a transition point to other levels, rooms, or hallways, and an extended rail might obstruct these pathways, making it challenging for the user or others to navigate the space.
In cases where staircases have turns, curves, intermediate landings, or require an extension at the top landing for any reason, a curved rail is necessary. Curved stairlift rails are custom-made to fit the unique shape and dimensions of each staircase. These rails can navigate bends, corners, and changes in incline, providing a smooth and seamless ride for the user. The curved rail also allows for a safe and comfortable stop at the top landing, ensuring that the user can safely transfer on and off the lift without the risk of falling or obstruction to other pathways.