If you have a family member that relies on a wheelchair to stay mobile, you're often faced with the difficulty of getting the chair in the house or van. If your loved one needs to use the wheelchair all the time, then you'll need a ramp for safety and ease. There are different types of ramps made from different materials. The important thing is to have it installed according to ADA guidelines concerning the slope so that the ramp is safe to use. Here are some other things to know about wheelchair ramps:

Features To Look For In Wheelchair Ramps

Wheelchair ramps can be installed permanently or temporarily. Temporary ramps are often portable so you can take them to get in and out of friends' homes. A permanent ramp connected to your own front door should have safety features and be sturdy so it has a long life. The ramp can be made from wood or metal and can be built on site or installed.

When shopping for a ramp, the length is the most important thing. The length is determined by the height of the rise. If there are several steps from the sidewalk to your front door, then you'll need a much longer ramp so the slope isn't too steep. Another thing to look for is a non-slip surface so people walking on the ramp won't slip and fall when it's wet. Handrails are important too. They provide support when walking and act as borders that outline the ramp so the wheelchair stays on the path.

Types Of Portable Ramps Available

There are several types of portable ramps available. You may want one of these for help getting in and out of a van or RV. Portable ramps are also handy for keeping in the van for times when ramps are not available when visiting, shopping, or attending outdoor events.

Portable ramps can be folded in some way so they are easy to transport. They are usually basic ramps with few safety features, so you may need to look around and find one that is a good match. Some ramps are little more than flat sheets of metal. Others are only tracks for the wheels to roll in. More expensive and bulky ramps have side rails and non-slip surfaces. The less expensive portable ramps are quite affordable, which makes it easy to ensure your loved one will always have a ramp available when needed. Even though portable ramps don't have as many features as the permanent variety, they can hold weights of hundreds of pounds and can be used safely.

If your loved one is lightweight and uses a small wheelchair, you may be able to pull the chair over a curb or single step, but if your home has multiple steps or if the weight of your loved one and chair combined is too heavy to lift, then you'll want a ramp so your loved one is able to stay mobile and go wherever he or she wants.