Ramps are a key component of mobility and accessibility planning since they provide an easy and affordable way to significantly reduce the risk of falling. There are many different types of ramps and a number of different ways in which they are utilized. Ramps may be used to eliminate steps leading up to your front porch, or smooth the transition from one level of your home to another, or they may be used to eliminate transitions from one type of flooring to another. Ramps can be temporary or they can be permanent. They can also be purchased, for long-term use, or rented, for short-term use.
Below is some of the more pertinent information to consider when researching ramps:
Types of Ramps
Mobility ramps, or wheelchair ramps, come in many shapes and sizes. For temporary use, modular ramps are usually what most people opt for. Modular ramps can be constructed out of wood or aluminum and can be installed and removed relatively easily. In fact, many smaller modular ramps can easily be folded and stored if they aren’t being used. Also, there are many mobility and accessibility companies, like Golden Years Renovation LLC in Dallas, TX, that rent these types of ramps; which is great for those who only need a ramp for a short period of time.
Permanent wheelchair ramps for residential use can be made out of aluminum, wood, or concrete. These ramps are typically installed for aging individuals with limited mobility, or for those who are permanently confined to a wheelchair. Although these types of ramps typically take longer to install and are more expensive, they are generally more aesthetically pleasing; a good installer will make sure the ramp coincides with the design and architecture of the rest of your home.
Commercial ramps are the ones you typically see at places like malls, restaurants, grocery stores, etc. These types of ramps are almost always constructed out of concrete because of the daily traffic they experience.
Threshold ramps are small ramps that reduce small, but sudden changes, in elevation. For instance, a threshold ramp could be used where carpet flooring meets hardwood flooring. Although the transition between the two types of flooring is small, it can pose significant danger to people who have limited mobility, to those in a wheelchair, and to those who rely on the aid of a walker.
Renting vs Owning Ramps
As mentioned in preceding section, there are many mobility and accessibility companies that rent equipment such as ramps. A quick Google search that includes your city and state will probably return multiple results.
If you’ll only require a ramp for a limited amount of time, because you’re recovering from an injury or will be moving in the near future, then renting is far more cost effective than buying. The major drawback to rentals is they are generally perceived as unappealing in terms of aesthetics, but keep in mind it’s only short-term and the whole process of renting is usually pain-free.
If you’ll require a ramp for the foreseeable future due to medical reasons, or perhaps you manage an assisted living facility, then purchasing ramps, or having permanent ramps installed, is probably your best option. In the long-run, buying over renting will cost less. Additionally, a custom ramp can be seamlessly integrated into your home making it much more appealing, and less invasive, then a temporary modular ramp.
Ramps are great, and often necessary, for those with mobility issues. There are multiple types so be sure to do plenty of research before making a decision so you can be sure you get the best ramp for your needs, and for your budget. If you’re in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, contact Golden Years Renovations LLC and set-up a free consultation so our experts can help you pick, install, or construct the best ramp for you.