How much space do I need to install a lift?

Posted: September 24, 2015

With so many options, how do you know how much space you really need to install a lift?
There are some simple facts to consider when allocating space for your home lift:


  • • Lifts generally take up more space than people think. The internal cabin dimensions must be added to the mechanism of the lift, running clearances and the structure that supports the lift.

  • • Small lifts do not cost much less than big home lifts and for lifts bigger is always best!

  • • If you need a wheel chair and a carer then the internal dimensions of the cabin will need to be 900mm W (door side) x 1300 D. Usually, the internal dimensions of the lift shaft will need to be around 1350mm W 1450mm D. Some lifts are slightly smaller. This is for swing door lifts only. If you want a high quality sliding door lift the shaft will be around 1550mm W x 1600mm D.

  • • Home lifts can have cabins up to 1100mm W x 1400mm D. For swing door lifts this will require a shaft around 1500 MM W x 1550mm D. Sliding door lifts will be around 1600mm W x 1800mm D.

  • • To support the lift you will need to add the lift shaft thickness. Steel towers add around 150mm to the width and depth dimensions. Concrete or block work adds significantly more. Beware of 140mm thick block work walls as filling them with concrete is very difficult and usually doesn’t work. Brick walls are not suitable to support a lift as their structural integrity can’t be guaranteed.

  • • If you simply don’t have much space then there are some clever home lifts from Europe that take up the absolute minimum of space. These lifts are generally screw lifts with a platform and come with an integrated lift shaft.


If further information about the space required for a lift it is advisable to talk to multiple suppliers.

There is nothing worse than designing your home and finding out during construction that your lift turns into a glorified dumbwaiter! Ensure you know how much space you need to install a lift before making any decisions.

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