As we slip and slide into the cold weather months, it can be especially important for the disabled and elderly to take the proper precautions to winterize your wheelchair ramp.
The ramps sold at Ramp Now are made of aluminum, so there are some specific notes on care, in order to ensure that you don’t shorten the lifespan of the ramp. The wheels on a wheelchair can be slick in the winter weather, causing them to move faster. It’s important to make sure ramps are clear so that our loved ones don’t slip, fall or have an accident as they use the ramp.
Steps to Winterize Your Wheelchair Ramp
Use Ice Melt – The first thing to know is that salt can have a corrosive effect on aluminum, shortening its lifespan. A wheelchair ramp can be a significant investment. Using ice melt instead of salt has the same impact on clearing snow and ice, without doing long term damage to the ramp.
Avoid Metal Shovels – In the thick of a northern winter, you are likely to see several inches of snow. It may be tempting to use the same metal shovel that you would use to clear the driveway, but the metal-on-metal effect can dent or scrape your ramp, leaving damage long after the snow is gone. For a light snow, you can use a broom or a leaf blower. For a heavier snow, a plastic shovel might be a better choice.
Avoid Chemicals of Any Kind – It may be tempting to use chemicals of one kind or another. The problem is that they can cause your aluminum ramp to corrode. In addition to ice melt, sand is another alternative that can help slow down the slick wheels on a wheelchair. You could also try using heat pads or heat tape to keep ice from forming. As always, please contact your A.D.A. professional with any questions or concerns.
It’s important for those in the wheelchair, and also care takers to exercise caution on ramps in the winter months. The grooves on an aluminum ramp can help slow wheels to an extent, but it is still important to winterize your wheelchair ramp. Make sure you do it in a way that won’t shorten the lifespan of the ramp!
For more information on wheelchair ramps, contact us today!