The Straight & Curved Stairlift Buyers Guide®


A Free Information Databank to Learn All About the Stairlift, Global Leading Manufacturers, Reviews, How to Choose a Stairlift and How to Buy a Stairlift!

Curved Rail Stairlifts

Curved Rail Stairlifts


Sterling Stairlifts

Sterling Stairlifts
  Sterling 1000 Stairlift
  Sterling 1000 Outdoor Stairlift
  Sterling 1000 Perch Stairlift
  Sterling 2000 Curved Stairlift
  Sterling 2000 Perch Curved Stairlift
  Sterling Simplicity Stairlift 
  Sterling Simplicity+ Plus Stairlift
  Sterling Product Line


Straight Stairlifts
  Simplicity Straight
    Simplicity Features
    Simplicity Options
    Simplicity Specs

 Simplicity+ Straight
    Simplicity+ Features
    Simplicity+ Options
    Simplicity+ Specs

 Sterling 1000
    1000 Features
    1000 Options
    1000 Specs

 Sterling Outdoor
    Sterling OD Features
    Sterling OD Options
    Sterling OD Specs

 Sterling Perch
    Sterling Perch Features
    Sterling Perch Options
    Sterling Perch Specs


Curved Stairlifts
  Sterling 2000
    2000 Features
    2000 Options
    2000 Specs

 Sterling Perch Curve
    Perch Curve Features
    Perch Curve Options
    Perch Curve Specs
Sterling Stairlifts, by Harmar
Lifting expectations
If you have difficulty getting up and down stairs you are not alone. Every year thousands of people look for a solution to the problems posed by the difficulty they have using the staircase in their home.

The decision to install a stairlift is sometimes a difficult one to take but when compared with the alternative of moving house, or living on one level of their home, many people have found it to be their preferred option.

The idea of selecting a stairlift and having it fitted may be daunting at first; however they can usually be fitted in a couple of hours and this guide will help explain what you need to think about when choosing your Sterling stairlift from Handicare.

We hope it will make choosing the stairlift that is right for your needs, both now and in the future, much easier.
Using a stairlift

Unless you know someone who is already benefitting from using a stairlift you may be a little  unsure of what is involved in owning and usingone.

It is a common misconception that stairlifts are fixed to the wall. This is rarely the case with domestic stairlifts which are usually fitted directly on to the staircase itself.

A stairlift has three basic components. First, a track is fitted to your stairs and a power pack (the drive unit) is fitted to the track. Then the seat that most suits your needs is fitted to the power pack.

All stairlifts are operated by a switch or toggle that is held in the direction of travel to make the lift move. When it is released the lift will stop moving.

All Handicare stairlifts are battery powered meaning they can still be used during a power outage.

While stairlifts are very simple to use they are mechanical devices and do benefit from annual servicing and maintenance.
Choosing a stairlift to suit your staircase

Stairlift tracks fall into two basic categories; straight and curved. This page will help you decide which type you need for your staircase.

Straight stairlifts
Straight stairlifts are suitable for use where a stairlift only needs to travel in one straight line; for example from the hall to the landing as shown in diagram A.

Sterling offers a range of straight stairlifts to suit your needs: the Simplicity Series and the Sterling 1000 are detailed on pages 9 – 12.

Curved stairlifts
Curved stairlifts have tracks that are specifically designed to suit staircases that turn corners or are spiral; the staircases shown in diagrams B, C and D are examples of the type of staircase that curved stairlifts can be used on, but there are many more.

All Sterling curved tracks are made to order following a survey of each individual staircase.

Sterling’s curved stairlift system is called the Sterling 2000. It is a versatile system with some of the tightest track bends available; it can accommodate a wide range of staircase configurations and will hug the edge of your staircase. The twin
rail system provides a safe and smooth ride and while available in two colors as standard, light grey or gun metal, it can actually be supplied in any color to match your décor.

State of the art survey and manufacturing processes mean that Handicare manufactures Sterling custom tracks in market leading timescales.

Straight stairlifts and stair configuration:  Simplicity, Simplicity+, Sterling 1000
Straight stairlifts cannot travel around any bend or corner: 

Curved stairlift and example stair configurations:  Sterling 2000
Sterling curved stairlifts can travel around corners, across intermediate landings and even up spiral staircases!
They are designed for your individual staircase so you know the track will fit snugly while giving you a smooth ride.
Safety as standard

All Sterling stairlifts have safety sensors on the power pack and footplate; these are designed to stop the lift if it meets any obstruction. Once stopped it can only be moved in the opposite direction to the obstruction. All Sterling stairlifts have a diagnostic display so that you can monitor the status of your stairlift, for example if a safety edge has been activated.

Your stairlift will also come with a seat belt as standard for additional peace of mind. On the Simplicity+, 1000 and 2000 our easy release retractable seat belt gives the added flexibility of allowing you to fasten it to one side or centrally, whichever is easier for you or other users. The Simplicity comes with a clip belt as standard.

Easy to use

All Sterling stairlifts are operated by pressing or holding the large, robust toggle switch in the direction of travel.

Located at the end of the seat arm it can be easily operated by the hand or arm and leaves the arm rest clear to
provide unhindered support when getting on or off the seat.
Do you need a hinged track?

In order for the seat to get low enough for the user to sit on it is necessary for the track to extend beyond the staircase to the hall floor. Some houses will have a doorway close to the bottom of the stairs and the track may intrude across this. In these circumstances a hinged track should be fitted. This means that the track can be folded away from the doorway giving clear access.

Manual Hinge
The Sterling Simplicity, Simplicity+ and 1000 are available with a manual hinged track. This means you will need to raise and lower the track manually. However the gas strut assisted hinge is designed to make manual operation as easy as possible.

Powered Hinge
The Sterling 1000 and the Sterling 2000 are both available with an automatic hinged track. When operating the stairlift from the toggle, the hinge will lift/lower automatically.

When the stairlift is not in use the hinge is folded by holding a button on the remote control which means you do not need to move the track yourself. When the button is pressed your stairlift moves up the track and parks; the hinge section then moves automatically leaving the doorway clear.

Hinge tracks should always be raised when users go upstairs for any period of time, particularly if they are enabling access to the front door of a property or creating an obstacle for other users of the household.


Manual hinges can be lifted when the stairlift is not in use.

Powered hinges are operated at the touch of a button from upstairs or down to move the track away from doorways.
The remarkable Sterling Slide Track from Handicare!

The Slide Track is a ground breaking solution available only from Handicare for use with a Simplicity or Simplicity+ straight stairlift. This unique solution removes the need for a hinge. Instead the track moves up the staircase at the same time as the seat is moving, leaving the doorway at the base of your stairs unobstructed.

The Slide Track

Similar to a powered hinge, the Slide Track works automatically when the toggle or remote control is activated.

A Slide Track is slightly shorter than the length of your staircase. When you start to travel up the staircase the track will move with you. The track will reach the top of your stairs before the stairlift, it will stop while your stairlift continues on its journey to the top where you can safely dismount. When you come downstairs the track will travel down with you so you can dismount safely at the bottom.

The Slide Track is fitted with safety sensors at either end; these will halt the track if it encounters an obstacle during use. Your stairlift will continue to move towards the obstacle if desired where, if safe to do so, you can remove the obstruction and continue your journey. Alternatively the track and stairlift can be moved away from the obstruction. The Slide Track also offers safety benefits over a traditional hinged system by removing any risk of an object becoming caught in the hinge.


The Slide Track moves away from or towards the hall floor as you travel up or down.

The Slide Track moves towards or away from the landing as you travel up or down.
Sterling stairlift features

Swivelling your stairlift seat

When you arrive at the top of the stairs you will need to swivel your seat round so that you exit onto the landing safely.

Manual swivel
If you have a manual swivel you will find a handle at either side of the seat. By pressing either handle down, or pulling it up*, you can swivel the seat around to face the landing, where it will lock in place, allowing you to dismount safely.

* The Simplicity swivel operates by pressing down only.

Powered swivel
If you choose the powered swivel option the swivel is operated by continuing to hold the toggle when you arrive at the top of the staircase. The seat will move automatically while the toggle is activated. Our powered swivels have a manual override for emergency release to improve stairway access if required.

Folding your footplate
The footplate and seat can be folded up to increase available space leaving the staircase as clear as possible
for other users.

Manual footplate
Lifted and lowered by hand, manual footplates are fitted with an easy fold mechanism that minimizes the strength
required to fold the footplate up or down.

Powered footplate
If you choose the powered footplate option it will remove the need for you to bend down to fold or unfold the footplate. You can choose to have a footplate that folds automatically when the seat is folded and unfolded, or that is operated separately to the seat by a switch in the seat arm so you can raise and lower the footplate while seated.

Parking and calling your stairlift
All Sterling stairlifts come with two remote controls*, so you can have one upstairs and one downstairs. This means you can send your stairlift up and down the track without having to sit on it. This not only allows you to park your stairlift at the top or bottom of the stairs, it is ideal for multi-user situations as your stairlift can be called between levels, just like an elevator.

* Outdoor stairlift comes with one as standard.
Straight stairlift

If you do not require powered options, and you have a straight staircase, the Simplicity offers you a safe and cost effective way to overcome the challenge of climbing your stairs.

The upholstery is available in Sand colored wipe clean flame retardant fabric.

The Simplicity footplate and seat swivel are manually operated. It also comes with a clip seat belt as standard.

The Simplicity Series track offers a continuous charge function allowing the lift to be parked on any part of the track when it is not in use. This means you do not need to worry about where you leave your lift on the track as the batteries will charge in any position.

The Simplicity is available with a Manual Hinge or a Slide Track if required.

Max. weight limit 309lb (140.45 kgs)
       – hinge/slidetrack 265lb (120.45 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 11¼” (286mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 22¾” (578mm)
Armrest width – internal 19” (483mm)
Footplate to seat height
       – standard seat option 15¼-19¼” (387-489mm)
       – extended seat post 18-22” (457-559mm)
Min. footplate height 2” (51mm)
Min. track intrusion into staircase 6¼” (159mm)
Seat depth 14½” (368mm)
Min. swivel radius 26¾” (679mm)
Straight stairlift

For those requiring powered options, the Simplicity+ is a stylish solution to overcome the challenges of climbing straight stairs. It combines the continuous charge track of the Simplicity with the seat of the Sterling 1000 which means it is available in a selection of six colors.

The Simplicity+ offers the choice of manual or powered folding footplate and swivel options.

The Simplicity+ is compatible with the powered Slide Track and Manual Hinge systems so if you have a doorway close to the bottom of your stairs the Simplicity+ offers you a choice of solutions to prevent the track from causing an obstruction.

Max. weight limit 309lb (140.45 kgs)
       – hinge/slidetrack 265lb (120.45 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 14½” (368mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 22½” (572mm)
Armrest width – internal 18” (457mm)
Footplate to seat height 17-21¼” (432-540mm)
Min. footplate height 2¾” (70mm)
Min. track intrusion into staircase 7¼” (184mm)
Seat depth 16¾” (425mm)
Min. swivel radius 25¾” (654mm)
Sterling 1000
Straight stairlift

For those looking for minimal track intrusion into the staircase, the Sterling 1000 offers one of the slimmest straight stairlift tracks on the market. Available in a choice of six upholstery colors, it can be supplied with optional powered features to fold the footplate and to swivel the seat at the top of the staircase to allow for ease of exit.

The slim aluminum track has a hidden gear rack which offers two park points (as standard) which charge the batteries at the top and bottom of the stairs. The Sterling 1000 boasts our heaviest weight capacity at 350lb (159kg).

The Sterling 1000 can be combined with a manual or powered hinge solution to prevent the track from obscuring any doorway at the base of the stairs.

Max. weight limit 350lb (159 kgs)
       – manual / power hinge 302lb (137 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 15¼” (387mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 25½” (648mm)
Armrest width – internal 18” (457mm)
Footplate to seat height
       – Standard seat option 18¼-21¼” (464-540mm)
       – Perch seat option 26¾-34½” (679-876mm)
Min. footplate height 3¼” (83mm)
Min. track intrusion into staircase 4½” (114mm)
Seat depth 16¾” (425mm)
Min. swivel radius 26¾” (679mm)
Outdoor stairlift

It isn’t only stairs inside the home that cause problems for some people. Steps up to a porch, front door or deck can be equally difficult to climb.

The Sterling 1000 Outdoor stairlift is fully waterproofed and designed to overcome the problems caused by external straight runs of stairs.

Like all Sterling stairlifts the outdoor model has a key switch to prevent unauthorised use of the lift, which means it can be isolated when not in use.

Supplied with UV protected Slate Gray upholstery the Sterling Outdoor stairlift also comes with a waterproof cover to keep it protected from the weather so it is always ready for use.

Max. weight limit 350lb (159 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 15¼” (387mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 26½” (673mm)
Armrest width – internal 17¼” (438mm)
Footplate to seat height 18-22½” (457-572mm)
Min. footplate height 3” (76mm)
Min. track intrusion into staircase 7¼” (184mm)
Seat depth 15¾” (400mm)
Min. swivel radius 28½” (724mm)
Sterling 2000
Curved stairlift

The Sterling 2000 curved track system is tailored to your individual staircase, ensuring the best fit possible. Optional powered features to fold the footplate and to swivel the seat at the top of the staircase to allow for ease of exit are available.

The twin rail system, designed for a stable and smooth ride, is supplied in light grey or gun metal as standard; Handicare also offer special orders so the track can be finished in any color to suit your décor.

The track can be designed to take you from the ground floor directly onto the top landing level, to suit your needs exactly.

The Sterling 2000 can also be combined with a powered automatic hinge solution to prevent the track from obscuring any doorway at the base of the stairs.

Max. weight limit254lb (115 kgs)
       – heavy duty version 302lb (137 kgs)
       – Hinge track 254lb (115 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 15¾” (400mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 27” (686mm)
Armrest width – internal 18” (457mm)
Footplate to seat height
       – Standard seat option 19-24¼” (483-616mm)
       – Perch seat option 25½-34½” (648-876mm)
       – Fixed seat option 16¾-17½” (425-445mm)
Min. footplate height 2¾” (69mm)
Min. track intrusion into staircase 4½” (114mm)
Seat depth 16¾” (425mm)
Min. swivel radius 26¾” (679mm)
Perch Seats
Straight and Curved stairlifts

If you have restricted movement in the knee or hip
joints you may find sitting and standing difficult or
even painful. In these situations a Perch seat may be
the solution.

A Perch seat means that the user is almost in a
standing position when they are using the lift. There
is a shortened seat and retractable seat belt which
provide a stable support area for users to ‘perch’ on.
Perch seats are available on the Sterling 1000 and
2000 lifts.

Upholstery is available in a choice of six colors.
Your Sterling supplier will be able to advise you which
seat is most suited to your needs.

Max. weight limit 350lb (159 kgs)
       – manual / power hinge 302lb (137 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 16” (406mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 25½” (648mm)
Armrest width – internal 18” (457mm)
Footplate to seat height 26¾-34½” (679-876mm)

Max. weight limit 254lb (115 kgs)
       – heavy duty version 302lb (137 kgs)
Min. folded width to footplate 15¾” (400mm)
Min. open width to edge of footplate 27” (686mm)
Armrest width – internal 18” (457mm)
Footplate to seat height 25½-34½” (648-876mm)