6 points to consider when choosing ceiling hoists
What Safe Working Load (SWL) is required?
Prior to deciding on the type of hoist that you require, stop and think about the type of person(s) that will be using it. Is their weight stable? Is it likely to increase? Are there multiple users? Bear in mind that if you are using a hoist close to its SWL all the time, wear and tear will be increased, and the lifespan of the hoist will be reduced. Similar to a car, which may have a top speed of 120mph, but its actual optimum cruising speed is 70mph, your hoist should not be working constantly close to its maximum. Our GH1 hoist offers a choice of 175kg (27.5 stone), or, for the larger patient 205kg (32 stone).
What does the hoist look like?
Although it may seem that aesthetics should be low on the list when installing a hoist, remember that for many people, it is a symbol of their weakness. Therefore often it is important, that as far as possible, it blends into the environment. Alternatively if you are hoisting a child, you may want to make hoisting fun, to associate it with a positive experience. The GH1 hoist is extremely compact, and finished in a white contemporary finish, enabling it to blend into any environment. However in a fun twist, ‘Zebra’ or ‘Fish’ side covers can be fitted, making it much more exciting for children.
Often forgotten when comparing hoists, the speed of lifting is an essential factor. If a hoist is used five times a day, and you can save a minute per lift, with two carers this adds up to an incredible 3650 minutes per year, or 60.83 hours! Aside from the cost aspect, this is time that can be spent much more effectively caring for the patient.
The GH1 features a unique twin speed lift, meaning that when there is no weight on the hoist, it lifts three times as fast as when there is weight on the hoist. Once you have finished hoisting your patient, the hoist speeds up saving you time, and as we all know, time is …money!
Look at the lifting tape!
The lifting tape is one of the most essential items on a ceiling hoist. Failure of the lifting tape could result in serious injury, or even death. By law the lifting tape actually has to be examined every six months as part of the LOLER inspection, but some manufacturers go further than that and insist that the lifting tape is changed every two years, an expensive and time consuming process. The GH1 has an ultra-strong lift tape, it is extra wide, manufactured from seat belt material that will last many years without needing to be replaced.
What type of batteries does it use?
A hidden but vital part of the hoist, the batteries are essential to the reliable operation of the hoist. Many hoists are still fitted with gel or sealed lead acid batteries, meaning that they are heavy and cumbersome, do not keep their charge, and need replacing after 3 – 5 years. Battery technology has advanced in recent years, and the lithium Ion batteries fitted to a GH1, not only hold more charge, but also cannot be damaged and will not need replacing for many years.
One of the most important aspects of a ceiling hoist is how it charges. For a hoist to be effective and reliable, it must be simple and hassle free to charge. Many hoists have inbuilt chargers, but the hoist has to be returned to a specific point on the track to be charged. This can lead to staff forgetting to return it to the charge point, carers thinking the hoist is charging when it isn’t, and other issues. The GH1 hoist charges through the handset via a docking station, which we think is the perfect solution. It gives two small beeps when the handset has docked and the hoist is charging, so that you know the hoist is charging. Once the hoist is fully charged, the charger automatically switches off, preserving battery integrity.
For more information on the GH1, or any of our hoist systems, please either call us on 024 7647 2600, email us at email@example.com, or fill in the contact form on our website, here.
Watch a video on the GH1 below.
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