External Wheelchair Lifts

New Design Guidance on External Wheelchair Lifts

Have you noticed how often we talk about how our bespoke platform lifts can be installed internally, or externally? It’s because this information is of crucial importance for wheelchair users, and people with limited mobility. Why? Because there are still thousands of public buildings around the UK which have short flights of steps up to their front entrance and without the installation of an external wheelchair lift they would prove an impassable obstacle.

Tower Lifts Design Bespoke External Wheelchair Lifts

For two decades now, the Tower Lifts design and installation team has been creating bespoke access for visitors with limited mobility to leisure centres, historic houses, shopping centres, restaurants and offices. Over that time we’ve been impressed by the ways in which public spaces design has begun to incorporate an awareness of inclusive access. We are delighted now to read a new Code of Practice provided by BS 8300:2018

What is BS 8300:2018?

It offers detailed guidance for the design of an accessible and inclusive built environment, including buildings, landscaping, street design –  and access. Horizontal and vertical movement is a key component when envisaging public spaces that are accessible to everyone. The tactical use of platform lifts to enhance access to public, or heritage buildings is integral to this vision.


If you are thinking of installing a external wheelchair lifts but need advice and guidance on how to go about it, call us today on 01525 601099 to find out how we can support you.


Ensuring That External Wheelchair Lifts Are Resilient

The major difference between an external lift and an internal lift is the British weather! Tower Lifts designers were delighted to see the attention paid to this particular aspect by BS 8300-2:2018. External lifts are designed to withstand changes in temperature, direct sunlight, wind exposure, snow and, if located near the sea, the corrosive effects of salt.

Key Features When Designing External Wheelchair Lifts

For Tower Lifts designers and installers, every lift is unique. We relish the challenge of creating reliable, and durable lifts whatever the operating environment. When designing external wheelchair lifts we pay particular attention to:

Weatherproof Shelters – when installing a wheelchair lift with an external entrance we include in the design a weatherproof shelter adjacent to the building.

Optimal Temperature Range – every platform lift has an optimal temperature range. We always carry out careful assessments to ensure that predictable weather conditions fall within that range.

Non-Slip Floors – these come as standard when we design external wheelchair lifts. The grade of flooring is determined by carrying out a detailed analysis of expected moisture levels.

Pit Drainage – where external platform lifts require a pit as part of the installation, drainage is factored into the design.

Ventilation – for enclosed external platform lifts extra ventilation is often required because of the difference between internal and external temperatures.

External Stairlifts – When designing a wheelchair stairlift we work closely with a structural engineer. We need to know that the staircase can take the load, and be resilient to frequent use.

Maintenance for External Wheelchair Lifts

It goes without saying that external lifts are subject to more risks than their internal counterparts. We recommend a regular schedule of servicing to ensure that external wheelchair lifts maintain the highest safety standards, and provide reliable high quality access day in, day out, whatever the weather!


Tower Lifts carry out design and installation on a varied range of lifts throughout the UK including:

Domestic Lifts Food Lifts Bespoke Platform Lifts Service Lifts Platform Lifts Goods Lifts Scenic LiftsHeavy Duty / Car LiftsPassenger LiftsDumbwaiter LiftsMRL Lifts Fire liftsResidential Lifts low-Headroom Lifts