Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps

Choosing the right wheelchair ramp comes down to identifying a handful of needs or specifications for each wheelchair user and HPFY offers a multitude of options for every situation.

How do you know which wheelchair ramp will be ideal for your personal situation? With many options on the market, the questions seem to outweigh the answers. The use of wheelchair ramps (either portable or stationary) can open up the world to someone with limited mobility who depends on a wheelchair to get around. There is no logical reason to feel like a prisoner in your own home when the right ramp can help you regain your independence, mobility, and quality of life.

Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps

So Much to Choose From Wheelchair Ramps

Deciding on what type of ramp you may need can seem like a daunting effort. Do I need a threshold ramp, foldable ramp, or something that can overcome a number of steps? The options seem limitless, so how do you choose? As someone who is in a wheelchair and uses ramps to traverse the world around me, I have some tips that may help you find your ramp!! First, it is important to understand what types of wheelchair ramps are available. The choices are many and include:

  • Modular Access Ramps: Modular ramps are not considered portable and are designed for the home or business to meet ADA codes. Many times these can be larger ramps that are left in place for handicapped access. EZ-Access and PVI offer aluminum wheelchair ramps for homes to allow for access into homes and office buildings with ease.
Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps
EZ Access Pathway 48 Inch 3G Modular Access Ramps
EZ Access Pathway Aluminum Modular Platform With Four Feet Handrail
  • Wheelchair Van Ramps: While many handicapped or conversion vans have ramps incorporated into them, these ramps are designed for loading a wheelchair or scooter into a van or SUV for transport. A simple add-on to your existing van or a wheelchair ramp for an SUV can be the Roll-A- Ramp Powered Mini Fold Electric Minivan Ramp System. An economical option to increase your mobility.
Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps
Roll-A-Ramp Powered Mini Fold Electric Mini Van Ramp System
  • Portable Wheelchair Ramps: These porable ramps are available in a multitude of sizes, these lightweight and sometimes foldable ramps can be taken with you as you travel. Often these types of ramps are designed to overcome a small number of steps or even just overcoming a bump. Lightweight wheelchair ramps from Drive offer a variety of foldable and different length wheelchair ramps as well as companies like Clarke to give users all the options they need.
Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps
Drive Wheelchair And Scooter Ramps With Carry Bag
Clarke DecPac Portable Fiberglass Multipurpose Four Panel Ramp
  • Threshold Ramps: These lightweight threshold ramps are designed specifically to overcome doorways for short rises (such as sliding glass doors) and can be used with manual wheelchairs, power wheelchairs, and even scooters. Options include the Harmar Threshold Portable Ramp or possibly the PVI Rubber Threshold Ramp which can even be left in place outdoors for easy access since it’s made of rubber. There are a multitude of options, get out and explore!!
Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps
PVI Rubber Threshold Ramp
Harmar Threshold Portable Ramp
  • Wheelchair Ramp Scales: For somebody who is bedridden or fully dependent on a wheelchair for mobility, determining weight gain or loss is difficult. Just weigh the wheelchair alone and then again with the user and by simple math you have determined accurate weight. Some even incorporate a zeroing out option when the wheelchair is on by itself, eliminating the need for math. Graham Field or Health O Meter offer easy to use roll on scales for accurate weight measurement. This can be important when it comes to medication or other medical purposes.
Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps Five Tips for Choosing the Best Wheelchair Ramps
Health O Meter Digital Wheelchair Dual Ramp Scale Graham Field Pro Plus Oversized Folding Wheelchair Scale

Some Tips for Choosing Wheelchair Ramps

Like I stated before, being in a wheelchair myself I understand the need for choosing the best wheelchair ramp, but this is not a one-size-fits-all proposal. Somebody new to determining the best wheelchair ramp for them may need some assistance. Here are some things to consider:

  • Weight Limits: This may only apply to power wheelchairs or scooters (maybe even bariatric patients). Even the best portable wheelchair ramps have weight limits. This may be especially important for longer, lightweight aluminum ramps. Be sure to observe them strictly!!
  • Ease of Portability: If you travel with your ramps be sure that you are physically able to lift or carry them. Portable wheelchair ramps are available in a variety of designs that include single fold, multi-folding ramps, telescoping ramps, and track ramps. Many of these ramps are available in different lengths and may have some serious limitations, such as track ramps should only be used for manual wheelchairs.
  • Know Your Length: Is crucial to determine the proper length needed for any ramp you decide to use. The three crucial measurements you will need are: total vertical rise, your available distance, and width. By ADA guidelines, each inch of rise should be offset by 12 inches of ramp. This leads to a 5% incline. Owners of power chairs and scooters should always check with their manufacturer for any specifications are needed.
  • Ask Questions: If you were going someplace you have never visited before, ask about the surroundings or possible obstructions before you set off. This will allow you to have the best wheelchair ramp available for your needs to overcome that specific obstacle. Remember the Boy Scout motto “always be prepared.”
  • Being Knowledgeable: Whichever ramp is needed to overcome the obstacles facing you, be sure to fully understand how they operate or even get assembled. Proper operation of any type of wheelchair ramp will maximize the safety of the apparatus.

By choosing the best wheelchair ramp available for your needs, you can regain your independence and improve your mobility (not to mention quality of life). In order to get around with my wheelchair I have a full roster of wheelchair ramps so I can overcome anything this uneven, lopsided world has to offer!!


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