There are approximately 34.2 million people in the United States who live with a functional limitation which can make life a challenge on a daily basis. For those who are confined to a wheelchair or must use a cane or walker, just opening and walking through a door can become a major task. To make this daily necessity easier homeowners have the option of adding an electronic door opener to their pre hung exterior door. This addition to a home, along with 36″ interior doors from a quality provider, like UberDoors, can make movement inside and outside of the home much easier.
Here are a few door basics that can make doorway’s more handicap accessible in a home.
1. Wheelchair Ramp
Many homes have stairs at their entrance. This design element that can add beauty and interest to the front of a home can become a hazard and an impossibility for someone with a handicap that requires the use of a wheelchair. Thankfully there are options available for wheelchair accessibility that don’t require a whole house remodel and can be used on either a temporary or permanent basis.
There are three things to consider when installing a ramp:
- Height from sidewalk to porch or door entrance
- Weight capacity
- Slope/Length of ramp
Going up three stairs requires a much shorter ramp than going up six steps. A child will need a lower weight rated ramp than an adult. Be sure that you allow enough for enough space in the front of the home to maintain a shallower slope on your ramp. A higher set of stair will need a longer ramp or one that involves a turn.
2. Electric Door Opener
Just like the handicap door openers on the doors of public buildings, a home electric door opener consists of a mechanical arm that opens the door when a remote control is pressed. The remote can be hand-held, much like a garage door opener, or installed near the doorway of the home.
3. Wheelchair Accessible Threshold
Once the door has been opened, the next hurdle for people in a wheelchair or using a walker is trying to make it over the threshold of the door. Most doors have a lip that must be passed over to enter. This threshold can be difficult to navigate with limited mobility. There are metal, rubber, and wood threshold ramps available on the market that create a gentle slope that makes entrance easier and can be easily installed.
With just a few additions, a home can become more comfortable and easier for anyone with mobility issues. An easier access can mean an increase in activity, social involvement, and improved emotional well-being.