How To Choose A Threshold Ramp

How To Choose A Threshold Ramp: A Comprehensive Guide

Navigating through doors, sliding doors, or small steps can be a challenge, especially if you're using a wheelchair, scooter, or if you simply have mobility issues. Threshold ramps, designed to provide a smooth transition over doorways or small raised areas, are often the solution. However, with the plethora of options available, how do you choose the perfect one? This guide will steer you in the right direction.

1. Assess Your Need:

  • Location: Where will you primarily use the ramp? Is it for an exterior doorway, which might be exposed to the elements? Or is it for an interior space?

  • Usage: Consider who will be using the ramp. Is it meant for wheelchair users, pedestrians, scooter users, or all of the above?

2. Measure the Height of the Threshold:

Before diving into your purchase, measure the height of the threshold you wish to bridge. This will guide the length and type of ramp you need.

3. Ramp Length & Incline:

Choose a ramp length that offers a gentle incline. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) recommends a 1:12 slope for wheelchairs, meaning for every inch of height, you'll need 12 inches (one foot) of ramp. For example, for a 3-inch threshold, you'd need a 36-inch (3-foot) ramp.

4. Material Matters:

Most threshold ramps are made from one of three primary materials:

  • Rubber: Heavy-duty, slip-resistant, and durable. Ideal for both indoor and outdoor use.

  • Aluminum: Lightweight yet strong, resistant to rust, and suitable for both indoor and outdoor settings.

  • Plastic or Composite: Typically lightweight and portable. Best suited for indoor use.

5. Portability & Storage:

Consider whether you'll need to move or store the ramp frequently. If so, opt for a lightweight, foldable ramp that's easy to transport.

6. Weight Capacity:

Always check the weight capacity of a ramp. Ensure it can safely accommodate the combined weight of the user and their mobility device.

7. Surface Traction:

A non-slip surface is crucial, especially for outdoor ramps exposed to rain or snow. Look for ramps with slip-resistant surfaces or traction pads.

8. Side Rails & Edges:

For added safety, especially on wider ramps, consider options with side rails or raised edges. This helps prevent wheelchairs or scooters from veering off the side.

9. Budget & Brand:

As with any purchase, consider your budget. However, prioritize quality and safety over cost. Trusted brands, such as EZ-Access, often offer reliable and safe solutions.

10. Read Reviews:

Before making a final decision, read reviews from other users. They often provide valuable insights about the product's real-world performance.

In Conclusion:

Choosing the right threshold ramp can significantly enhance accessibility and safety in your home or business. By considering the above factors and consulting with experts or trusted retailers, you can find a ramp that perfectly fits your needs.

Remember, a ramp isn't just a piece of equipment; it's a gateway to a world of greater mobility and independence.