What are your options when considering the potential minefield of handicapped vans sale advertisements that litter the Internet and periodical media?
Discover some helpful hints and tips to guide you through the multitude of options that may be facing you if this is what you are contemplating right now.
Buying your own wheelchair accessible transportation is a sound financial move when you consider the overall costs involved in block rentals or periodic hire. As well as this, it helps to factor in the simple convenience of having your own vehicle ready and waiting for you whenever you need it.
Buying a Wheelchair Accessible Van
The actual buying process when buying from a verified dealership is relatively straightforward and not really where I want to take this article as it's pretty much the same as buying any car or van in this way
But there are some things to look out for that are not the same as buying a regular vehicle and these obvious and not so obvious points are really where I want to focus my attention here.
The main thing to be aware of when purchasing an accessible vehicle of any kind and especially a van is the "accessibility" part of it. By that I mean how easy it is to get the wheelchair user and their chair from the ground into the vehicle, securely anchor them once inside and then out again. Here's what I mean:
Wheelchair Access to a Handicap Van
Let's walk through this so you can see where I'm going with this. First off, the wheelchair user will be sitting in the chair beside the van they want to get into.
So you want to look at how easy it is for you to open the access door, lower the ramp and move the chair and person onto the ramp. Next, look at how easy is it to raise them into the van then either anchor the chair in position or transfer the person from their chair to a suitable seat in the van and buckle them up safely in their seat belt.
After that, you then want to look at reversing the process by getting the person back onto the ramp inside the vehicle and the safely lowered out of the van onto the ground. The most important thing to be casting a critical eye over is how much space there is available inside the vehicle for all this to happen and if it is easy to move about and do all the things that need doing without feeling cramped or restricted in any way.
Minus Points to Look Out For
A big minus in an accessible van is lack of space inside to move around without feeling restricted. Smaller vans will undoubtedly have this problem, especially headroom limitations so this is something to be aware of.
It might seem sensible to opt for a smaller van that is more economical to run with lower fuel costs, but this feature will soon lose its appeal if you're constantly being frustrated by banging your head, elbows, knees or other parts of you body!
Another minus point is a mechanized ramp that is complicated to operate. You want to really try this aspect of the vehicle out before you buy it as it can save a lot of frustration later on if the ramp is easy to use.
Buying Your Perfect Wheelchair Accessible Van
While a lot of aspects of any vehicle that would make it perfect for you will come down to personal preferences, in general the perfect van would be one that has easy access and a ramp that is easy to operate, while having plenty of space including headroom inside to make the person who will be using it comfortable and relaxed about traveling in it.
General things like make, model, fuel consumption and performance are important too, but are secondary to the usability and comfort that it offers its most important passenger!
Originally posted: March 21, 2014
[BACK TO TOP]