Today we were asked to carry out a Somerset stairlift service. The straight stairlift was originally fitted by another company but the customer was unhappy with their service. We will happily attend to stairlifts installed by others but we just can’t guarantee any work carried out before we look at them.
Stairlift Repair In Somerset.
The stairlift was located in Weston-Super-Mare by a company known to us. Sadly this Bristol stairlift company use contractors rather than their own stairlift engineers. This unfortunately leaves a trail of disaster because the fitters are paid regardless of how the lift was fitted. We have been called to their installations to find cover screws missing, broken pcb’s and seats out of level. These are all stairlift installation errors but were put down as aborted installs due to faulty products.
Anyway, we arrived at the house of the Somerset stairlift service and we were greeted by a friendly but unhappy lady. She explained that the stairlift was just over a year old and already the company had been out a couple of times and it still wasn’t right. It was now out of warranty and the company more or less told her to go elsewhere – charming!
The stairlift was a Brooks slimline 130 model and the first thing we noticed was the bottom rail did not reach the floor. Also, the bottom rail cap was missing. Not the end of the world but the cover catches any dust, debris and even oil as well as tidying up the appearance of the angled rail end. The next thing I noticed was the footrest wasn’t level. This is usually done when the seat is leveled and before the cover is replaced during installation. The lady told me she had bought the stairlift as new with a years warranty but we weren’t convinced.
The lady went away to put the kettle on and we had a closer inspection of the stairlift. It was fitted too close to the wall for starters and there was an over-hanging window sill at the top. The rail was fitted hard against the step noses and when the footrest was leveled it caught the step nose. Now we were opening a can of worms. When we got to the top of the stairs we found that the racking had not been cut short within the rail to allow for over-run should the final limit switch fail and the ultimate limit block wasn’t fitted in the racking channel either.
Somerset Stairlift Repair.
So this was turning out to be a bigger job that originally expected but none the less it was straight forward enough. Our vans carry most parts for the Brooks straight stairlift so we knew we would be able to resolve all the issues in a single visit. We removed the stairlift from the rail and also the top section of racking. This was cut down to the correct length which also finished just above the last fixing screw – perfect!
We then undid all the stair tread fixing screws and correctly positioned the rail the correct distance from the wall. As there was too much over-hang at the top we undid the stair brackets and lowered the rail back down to the floor, pulled it off the noses for clearance and fitted a bottom end cap and then tightened all the stair brackets back up in sequence.
Somerset Stairlift Service.
Whilst the stairlift was off the rail it was time to give it a good check over and full service. As part of a Somerset stairlft service we lubricate all the rollers, pinion gear, charge pick-ups, electrical connections etc. We look for signs of wear and tear, play in the pinion gear, test the over speed governor and the refit it on to the rail. Once back on the rail we can then activate the safety edges and check the diagnostic display to check the Brooks stairlift fault codes are displaying correctly. We drove it all the way down to make sure it was clear of obstructions and then isolated it. Whilst one of us carried on fitting the rail and end stop, I decided to level the footrest and check the seat bolts. Before I replaced the cover I decided to check the batteries. I found that the date on the batteries dated them as being two years old – it was all making sense now!
So the stairlift had clearly been fitted before. The batteries dated the stairlift as being slightly older than believed. It had obviously been installed for a short length of time and then removed . As it was in very good condition it had been resold as new – tut tut! The rail had been fitted too high up the stairs and too close to the wall. The fitter chose to angle the stairlift forwards away from the wall rather that locate it correctly. This however caused the footrest to catch the step noses so the fitter decided to angle it away and hope nobody noticed. The bottom cap was missing from the kit and as these come as standard with every new lift in the box this jumped straight out at me on arrival.
Somerset Stairlift Installation.
We thought we were only going to carry out a Somerset stairlift service but by the time we had finished we had basically fully reinstalled the stairlift but at least it had been installed correctly now. The batteries should still be good for another three years and it had it’s first stairlift service so we were happy to sign it off. We called the customer and asked her to try the stairlift and ride it from top to bottom and use the seat swivel at the top. Instantly she could tell the difference. The chair wasn’t leaning forwards anymore and her feet were sitting level. The bottom cover was in place and more pleasing for her to look at and the stairlift now stopped at the bottom rather than half way up the first step. There was still slightly more overhang than usual at the top by about 50mm but in this instance it didn’t cause any problems. The surveyor had clearly made a mistake which is why we provide a page explaining how to measure your stairs correctly.
Honest And Trustworthy Somerset Stairlift Company.
The lady was told about the age of the batteries and although angry at first decided not to take it any further as she was just glad she had found a company she could trust. We left there knowing she was another happy customer who will pass our name on to her friends and family.
We believe in going the extra mile for our customers. It is advisable to carry out your own background checks when searching for a reliable stairlift company in Somerset and South West England. We get a lot of word of mouth recommendations which are the best. We also have 5* reviews on Google as well as our Facebook page.