A mobility scooter is similar to a wheelchair, but propelled with a motor for easier use and a wider range of mobility, such as running errands, grocery shopping and travelling. Mobility scooters are also referred to as power-operated vehicles or electric scooters. Using these motorised mobility tools can help disabled individuals experience lives as close to normal as possible. Getting one of these large and cumbersome units upstairs may challenge you, but it can be done with a proper ramp.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- MDF plywood boards
- Table saw
- Sand paper
- Staple gun
Measure the distance of the stairway, and width of the motor scooter wheel base. Cut two sheets (or more) of MDF plywood according to these measurements. Cut the MDF to cover the full length of the stairway, top-to-bottom, with easy extensions onto the floors of both levels. This ramp is only intended to walk a scooter up a level of stairs.
Sand the MDF board, especially smoothing the corners to prevent sharp edges from damaging and abrading the carpet or preventing an optimal application as you apply it to the ramp.
Place the MDF board that is slightly wider than the width of the wheel base of the mobility scooter, over half of the stairway. Keep the other side of the stairway clear as regular steps.
Screw the MDF board into the steps, with three screws in each step. Screw both the corners and the centre of the board into every step for a solid and secure fit.
Cover the entire half of the stairway with the ramp to make an easy access avenue for the motor scooter to move upstairs. Apply a thick, textured Berber carpet or another soft, durable surface such as rubber matting, over the top of the ramp. Staple the ends of this covering under the ramp to keep the surface clean and smooth.
Test the installation by having a strong individual activate the motor scooter, and gently drive it up the ramp. However, instead of riding the scooter, this person should only hold its handles to guide the machine safely up the ramp, while walking alongside, using the stairs.
Tips and warnings
- Many companies specialise in mobility ramps that can be installed in your home to help make your home more user-friendly for your mobility scooter. Calculate the steepness of the ramp by measuring the difference in height from the top to the bottom of the ramp. Then measure the length of the ramp to calculate the incline. Personal ramps can suit your needs, and have no specific specifications, but if the steps seem too steep to safely push a scooter upstairs, you may consider alternative options.
- Push the scooter up the ramp. Never try to ride or drive the scooter up a steep ramp.
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