Guide to Building Your Own Wheelchair Ramp

A wheelchair ramp is a man made inclined plane to move the wheel chair from ground floor to top floors. Wheelchair ramps permit the wheelchair user to move the wheelchairs or other wheeled object to a deck of certain height instead of using a stairs. Wheelchair ramps are more economical than wheelchair lifts and are very convenient Wheelchair ramps are essential at home for a wheelchair user. Building a ramp at home is easy and cost effective. The ramps are constructed for wheelchairs, but they are also ideal for strollers and scooters.

A wheelchair ramp can in fact add a resale value to one's home. In the case of building a ramp, it is very important that the slope not be more than 1 inch of rise for every 12 inches of run. Ramps should therefore tend to be long.

One will need to build a ramp at least 20 feet long to reach a deck of 20 inches in height. The ramp is constructed with pressure treated lumber to prevent the wood from rotting. First, one should have to measure up from the ground to find out how many inches the ramp will rise. As for every inch of rise, it will need one foot of run. To accommodate turning at the top of the ramp, up to 5 foot square landing must be laid out with batter boards and mason's lines. Each line must be leveled in order to apply the 3-4-5 triangle principle to square the corner.

The line then slides along the batter board until the distance between two points (3 feet and 4 feet from the corner) is 5 feet. The sod should then be removed from the site and 2-3 inches of soil excavated. It should excavate an extra few inches deeper at the bottom of the ramp so that one can build as close to ground level as possible.

Landscape fabric is laid down over the excavated site to prevent grass from growing up through the ramp. Joists are laid out and are installed in the ramps. The inner joists are laid out on the header joists. The hangers are nailed to both sides of the joists. The decking boards are attached to the joists with galvanized deck screws.

The boards have to butt together. Since they're pressure treated, the boards will shrink as they dry to leave some gap. One can also design a matching railing for the ramp in its own appealing look.

Rory H. Hawkins writes about wheelchair ramps and other interesting topics. For more information on used wheelchair ramps visit us today.

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