If you have limited mobility, getting a stairlift installed can be a great modification to your home.
You can maintain your independence, and live in your house for as long as possible.
There have been plenty of studies about the benefits of independent aging! But it can be daunting to consider all your options when there are so many stairlift manufacturers to choose from.
Acorn is one of the busiest stairlift companies in the world, and has a good track record.
They claim to have installed over half a million lifts in homes in 80 countries.
Acorn is a UK-based company with US headquarters in Orlando. They have lift engineers and in-home surveyors situated all over the country.
Acorn keeps its product line simple with three types of stairlifts: straight, curved, and outdoor lifts. The company manufactures and installs every stairlift itself, so it doesn’t outsource any of the procedures to a third party.
Acorn Stair Lift Products
The Acorn 130 Straight stairlift is designed for straight indoor staircases. The standard version is the most affordable of Acorn’s three models. It can carry weight up to 280lb, but a special upgrade will give it a 350lb capacity if required.
The Acorn 180 Curved-rail stairlift is customized to fit a curved staircase with turns and landings. The curved rail is constructed in pieces that fit together – it doesn’t come in one solid piece.
The Acorn 130 Outdoor stairlift gives you access to steep driveways, porches, and decks, and onto private docks and jetties. It has a weatherproof cover and is designed to be resistant to cold, sun, and rain. It has an automatic brake feature that stops the chair if there are any obstructions or debris on the track.
The indoor lift models can also have a perch seat instead of a normal seat, for people who don’t want to have to bend their legs. This is also a great option for very narrow staircases, that can’t accommodate the 29” or so that a normal stair lift requires.
All Acorn stairlifts are designed to be attached to the stairs themselves, and not the wall. There’s no messy, inconvenient remodeling of your home at all!
Acorn Lift Features
|Automatically cut off power to the lift if they detect a potential obstruction, such as something left on the stairs
|Lockable swivel seat
|Makes it easy and safe to get on and off the stairlift
|Smooth start and stop
|Ensures a comfortable and reliable ride without any jolts or jerks
|Continues to operate even if there is a power cut, so there’s no risk of being stranded on the stairs
|Simple switch or paddle control
|Allows the user to operate the stairlift with either hand
|Provides added peace of mind and security
|Enables the user to diagnose any simple faults or changes in the stairlift’s status
|Allows the user to call for or send the stairlift if it isn’t where they need it to be
|Slimline and foldable
|Fits quickly and easily to the stairs, not the wall, and requires no structural changes to the home. Folds away conveniently when not in use
|Optional hinged rail
|Designed to eliminate any obstruction or trip hazard at the bottom of the stairs
Acorn stairlifts are designed with modular interlocking rails, that fit together to follow the angles of your staircase. This system can be put together and installed in a few days. A full-length custom rail that needs to be manufactured to measure can take weeks.
Each Acorn stairlift is fitted with a seat belt, so you can buckle up for safety. The seating area has a footrest safety buffer, which is designed to stop the stairlift on the track if there are any obstacles.
The lift won’t start moving if the seat is not correctly aligned. There is also a speed governor mechanism and safety gear that will get you up and down the stairs in a smooth and controlled motion.
Straight indoor and outdoor lifts can carry up to 280lb. You can order a customized straight lift that carries up to 350lb, at an extra cost. Curved lifts carry up to 265lb maximum.
All three lift models run on DC power. If there is a power outage, the backup rechargeable battery kicks in, so you won’t be trapped on the stairs.
Another useful feature of these lifts is the call-and-send mechanism, which uses two infrared remote controls to call and send the stairlift up and down the stairs. You can “park” it out of the way when not needed, and then bring it to you when you want to use it.
Acorn Lift Dimensions
Here you can see the dimensions of the lift and seat at a glance:
|Floor to top of footrest
|Top of footrest to top of seat (Short) (Tall)
|17.5 (16.25) (19.75) inches
|Top of seat to top of arms
|Top of arms to top of seat back
|Width between armrests (Wide arm version)
|17.5 (19.5) inches
Acorn Stair Lift Prices
Stairlift manufacturers don’t generally advertise their pricing online, for the simple reason that each staircase is different. An assessor will have to come to your home to give you a proper quote.
You can expect to pay the least amount of money for a standard, no-frills straight stairlift, for a relatively short staircase of 12-14 steps. You’ll pay more for a curved lift, an outdoor lift, or a lift with some extra weight capacity.
Below is the range of Acorn stairlift costs you should expect to budget for:
|$3,000 to $5,000
|$10,000 to $15,000
|$10,000 to $15,000
Pros and cons of Acorn stairlifts
- Quick to install
- Ease of Use Commendation from the Arthritis Foundation
- Reliable help desk year-round
- Weight limits at 280 and 350 pounds are lower than other manufacturers
- Battery to be purchased separately
- No warranty for battery cells
Acorn accreditation and warranty
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) gives Acorn Stairlifts an A+ rating. Acorn has a 4.8 out of 5-star consumer rating on the BBB website. Most complaints about the company are made by family members wanting refunds after the primary user passed away, or went into a senior care facility.
Acorn lifts are covered by a 12-month manufacturer’s warranty. Lots of users are tempted to fix the lift themselves if they are good with tools. Don’t be tempted, however, if your lift is still under warranty, as you won’t be covered. If the lift has stalled the reason is generally a flat battery, but it’s best to call a professional for any other issues.
Acorn is a reputable company and its lifts are some of the most reasonably-priced in the marketplace. The company does its own installations nationwide, so you don’t have to hassle with a third-party installer.
If you’re a bariatric lift user, the weight capacity of Acorn lifts might not be sufficient.
While the 350lb weight capacity upgrade will suit most users, a larger requirement means you should probably look elsewhere.
Acorn’s innovative FastTrack® stairlift rail system allows them to install curved stairlifts within days of your purchase. This is faster than other stairlift manufacturers, so you can enjoy the mobility benefits of a stairlift as soon as possible.
If you want luxury features such as high-end fabrics or styling, or lots of motorized and automatic features, these lifts probably won’t satisfy your needs. However, Acorn stairlifts are a perfectly decent and good-looking choice, if you’re happy with a standard model. Extra bells and whistles required? Keep shopping around!