Our home elevator solution
10 years 6 months ago #29567
Do you need a lift that will take you from the first floor to the second? Well we did, and we did it without spending the 25 grand plus install costs, though the whole idea might sounds a bit unorthodox.
My friend found one of those drivable lifts that runs on batteries that's used in warehouses that's driven up and down the aisles and then lifts up so the worker can get the item off the tall shelves.
After hunting on Craig's list and EBay, we finally found one for $2,500. It was shipped from the state of WA to TX, where my friend then loaded it up in his horse trailer so he could bring it to MO.
After cutting a hole through the floor from the first floor to the second, we drove the unit in and parked it. We then enclosed the entire unit with drywall and doors on each floor. On the first floor the lift was installed in my small study which lands in the master bedroom on the second floor. After we'd paid for all the tearing up and reconstruction, our cost was $8,000 which is a whole lot cheaper than the cost for a home tyle elevator unit.
The unit is a bit to small for me to drive my wheelchair on and off, so instead I just make a transfer onto a padded stool in the lift and then transfer off on the second floor to another wheelchair that's always waiting.
The only drawback so far is that because the unit sits on wheels and a very heavy frame, on the first floor it is not even with the floor (approx 30\" high) so I have to use a step-stool and rather strong upper arms to lift myself up and in the lift when going from the 1st floor to the 2nd. Because it raises on hydraulics and is battery operated, even if the main power to the house goes out, the lift will still run on fully charged batteries. If the batteries do fail, the unit is designed to lower itself to the first floor even without power.
We do plan on eventually cutting a hole in the first floor and dropping the entire unit down into our basement so it's level with the floor on the first floor, but for the time being I just haul myself up and on the lift.
I tried in add some photo's but the site couldn't handle them, so if you're interested in more information plus photo's, please contact me and I'll share more info. It might be odd, but it works for us!