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Straight vs Curved Stairlifts – Which is Right for You?

Jan 5, 2021 | Children of Aging Parents, Independent Living, Special Needs Parenting

If you are considering purchasing a stairlift, you have likely come across different manufacturers and a variety of models and compatible add-ons and features. So many options can be a little overwhelming and even stressful, especially if you are early in your search and still trying to figure out what type of stairlift is right for you. Or you may not be sure a stairlift is an appropriate solution at all due to the uniqueness of your stairs.

The good news is, there is most likely a system that will work for you even if your stairs are long, curved, winding, deep, or narrow.

This article will discuss the two main options for stairlifts in your home, when one alternative is superior over the other, the installation process, and some of the features that make them unique. We’ll also share some of our straight and curved chairlifts with you.

If you still have questions, give us a call. We’d be glad to answer any questions or help you find a dealer in your local area.

Straight Stairlifts

Straight stairlifts are the most common and are perfect for homes with traditional stairs with an average rise and run pattern. As a result of needing less customization, straight stairlifts are also less expensive than a curved stairlift.

These stairlifts use a straight rail that moves parallel to the stairs and can be mounted on either side of the stairs. Their design is best suited for a staircase with no bends, turns, landings, or irregularities.

Sounds simple enough, right?

Straight stair lifts do not require any construction to your home and are mounted directly to your stairs (not the wall). The underside of the rail has brackets secured to the stairs, and the footrest and seat are mounted on the outside chassis, which slides on the rail.

The installation of a straight stairlifts adds great accessibility without being invasive in your home. In most cases, an indoor straight lift can be installed by a professional in only two to three hours.

Straight stairlifts are great solutions for most people, but what do you do when a straight rail won’t fit?


Curved Stairlifts

Curved stairlifts are better solutions for homes that contain stairs that change directions, curve, or have transitional landings. They are also great for homes with multiple floors if, for instance, you have a downstairs basement and an upper level.

Curved stairlifts are custom built and unique to your home. As a result of the custom configuration, curved stairlifts are usually more expensive than straight stairlifts.

Although curved stairlifts are more complex than your standard straight lift, installation is still easy and will generally take two professional installers about 3 hours to fully complete. However, the installation time is dependent on the complexity of your configuration.

Now that you know the basics of straight and curved stairlifts, let’s look at some of our most popular models.

Pinnacle Premium Stairlifts

The Pinnacle SL600 has earned its name and reputation for standing above the rest. Design, form and function come together to make Pinnacle the most reliable, durable, and sought-after stairlift on the market.

The SL600 is the narrowest stairlift in the industry when folded completely, which eliminates tripping hazards and leaves a wider stairway for other household members to easily access. Learn more about the Pinnacle SL600.


HA_SL300_Lifestyle-UpStairsAnother great straight stairlift option for homes is the The Pinnacle SL300. The Pinnacle SL300 stairlift is competitively priced with plenty of value. Compact, it runs smoothly and requires little to no maintenance.

Similar to the SL600, the SL300 uses the patented helical worm gear drive system for extremely smooth and quiet ride and folds up to to 11″, just a half inch more than the SL600’s industry leading 10.5″. Learn more about the Pinnacle SL300.


Helix Curved Stairlifts

Curved Stairlifts - VerticalOur Helix curved stairlift is one of a kind and are custom designed to fit your needs, staircase, and décor. The Helix is the perfect lift for stairways with multiple landings or 90 or 180 degree turns. Some of the standout features include:

  • Extremely quiet, smooth ride
  • True-Curve rail with advanced bending technology creates smoother turns
  • Supportive, ergonomic seating
  • Simple-connect rails and lighter chassis for easy installation


Choosing the Best Stairlift

Whether you choose a straight stairlift or a curved stairlift, be sure to always wear your seat belt and keep up with the maintenance for your stair lift. For a complete line of lifts, contact Harmar today. Our dedicated customer service representatives are committed to your safety and strive to help you find the best stairlift for your home.

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