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Stairlift removal and recycling

Once a stairlift has been installed on a property for a long period of time, it will eventually need to be removed or replaced. It can be difficult to decide what to do with a stairlift that is no longer required or no longer serves its purpose. It can also be unclear how you go about removing unwanted stairlifts.

Hopefully, straight or curved stairlift removal is something that will be a consideration after many years of satisfied use in order to upgrade to a newer model. However, events such as bereavement, relocation, or replacement due to malfunction will mean that your stairlift will need to be removed. For common questions associated with how stairlifts are removed, please see the frequently asked questions section at the end of this guide.

Free stairlift removal

There are a number of options that stairlift owners can choose from for the removal of a stairlift. Stairlifts for straight stairs are far easier to remove than curved stairlifts due to the bespoke nature of the latter’s construction, and it is worth bearing in mind that some companies may charge a small stairlift removal cost. Handicare, however, will remove a stairlift free of charge if you are replacing your current stair lift for a Handicare model or upgrading your current Handicare stairlift. Please note that Handicare does not offer a buyback service on stairlifts due to the bespoke, made-to-measure nature of the goods.


Removing a Stairlift

Reputable suppliers will always dispose of an unwanted stairlift in a professional and environmentally safe way rather than scrapping the stairlift. If a non-professional body (such as a friend or someone interested in buying the lift) or local stair lift dealers have offered to remove the stairlift, you are obliged by law to ensure that it is not disposed of by illegal means, as you could be liable to fly-tipping charges. Fly-tipping is a criminal offence which is committed if household waste is deposited, or allowed to be deposited, in a way or place not allowed by a waste management licence. Unlawful stair lift removal and disposal is not recommended.

Due to the complicated nature of stairlifts, particularly curved models, which have a large number of different materials used in their production, there is very little scrap value for the metal within the stairlift frame, and scrapping a stairlift is not a recommended course of action should you want your stairlift removed.


Giving a stairlift to charity

Depending on the age and condition of your stairlift, it may be possible to give your stairlift to charity. However, due to the bespoke nature of many stairlifts, it’s not a straightforward process.

If you have a straight stairlift, where the rail and all working parts have been kept in good condition (and your stairlift has been serviced regularly), then many reputable companies will buy your used stairlift from you in order to sell it on to a new owner. Many companies use the funds from their second-hand stairlifts to raise money for local and national charities, meaning you are making a cost-effective decision that will benefit others.

How your stairlift purchase gives back to Age UK

When you buy a product through Age Co Mobility, you are helping to raise money for Age UK, a vital charity dedicated to inspiring, supporting, and enabling older people in the UK through numerous help, outreach, and activity programs.

Age Co Stairlifts are provided by Handicare Accessibility Limited (Handicare), working in association with Age Co. Age Co is a trading subsidiary of Age Co, which donates its net profits to Age UK. 


Recycling a Stairlift

Recycling a stairlift is an environmentally conscious way of disposing of a stairlift that is no longer needed. In most cases, companies that offer to remove your stair lift and then ethically dispose of it will charge a nominal fee. This is because stairlift removals require professional labour, but also because recycling centres will also most likely charge a fee for its safe disposal. Whilst it may seem frustrating to have to pay a fee, it is a much safer option than to have your stairlift removed by a private party who may dispose of it by illegal means, leaving you potentially open to criminal charges of fly-tipping.

Many reputable suppliers, including Handicare, will ensure that once removed, your stairlift is safely handled by the nearest local recycling plant. Due to the many complicated parts that make up a stairlift (the batteries, cables, tracks, seat, plastic parts, and metal parts), they should always only be disposed of by professionals at a legal recycling plant. 


  • What will my stairs look like after my stairlift is removed?
  • How long does it take to remove a stairlift?
  • Who will remove my stairlift? 
  • Who will remove a stairlift fitted by the council?
  • How do I recycle a stairlift?


What will my stairs look like after my stairlift is removed?

If it is an indoor stairlift that is installed on carpeted or wooden stairs, there may be a few small holes left in the stair tread where the brackets were drilled. If there is a carpet, it is possible that an indentation may also be left. This can often be rectified by steam cleaning the area.

How long does it take to remove a stairlift?

Stair lift removal should only be done by professionals to ensure your property is not damaged. The removal should only take a couple of hours, at a pre-arranged time, with a reputable service provider like Handicare.

Who will remove my stairlift?

If you are looking to have a stairlift removed so you can upgrade to a newer model, Handicare will offer to remove the old stairlift and recycle it. This can all be done during your home visit.

Please note that Handicare does not offer a buyback service on stairlifts due to the bespoke, made-to-measure nature of the goods. However, they will remove your old stairlift free of charge if you are purchasing a new Handicare stairlift.

Who will remove a stairlift fitted by the council?

Some people can get part or all of their stairlift paid for by their local council. If you no longer need your council stairlift, you can get it removed in the same way as a stairlift you bought yourself. The council may be able to remove the stairlift, so do speak to them, but they will not always offer council stairlift removal services.

How do I recycle a stairlift?

You should avoid fly-tipping your unwanted stairlift at all costs, as there is a myriad of options for recycling and re-using your stairlift. Recycling is an eco-conscious way for you to dispose of your unwanted stairlift, but there are a number of reputable stairlift removal companies that can provide professional stairlift removal and dispose of it for a small removal fee. Handicare will be able to suggest companies that can help.

Key takeaways

  • Sometimes stairlifts can be no longer required and, therefore, removal is needed.
  • Some people will eventually require a different type of stairlift, prompting an upgrade and removal of the old one.
  • Ensure whoever removes your stairlift is reputable and has experience safely dismantling and disposing of stairlifts.
  • If you're buying a new Handicare stairlift, we will remove your old one for free.
  • If your stairlift is still in good condition, consider donating it to a charity that helps people with mobility issues.
  • Fly-tipping a stairlift is not only illegal and could result in hefty fines, but it's also unsafe and harmful to the environment.

For more advice regarding stair lift removal, please contact Handicare on 0800 9100 248 or make an enquiry here.

Events such as bereavement, relocation, or replacement will mean that eventually, your stairlift will need to be removed. Here are the available options. 

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