Man in wheelchair sitting outside of van

Tips for Maintaining Your Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle

Basic Maintenance of a Handicap Accessible Vehicle

Conversion vehicles require even more vigilant maintenance than ordinary vehicles, and regular wheelchair van maintenance is a proactive and preventative measure to keep your vehicle in tip-top shape. For the millions of people who use wheelchairs for mobility, a wheelchair accessible van often becomes your main mode of transportation. When it isn't performing correctly, there aren't many accessible alternatives, and standard vehicles are out of the question. As a result, it's even more important to be proactive in maintaining a BraunAbility wheelchair van.

Maintaining your wheelchair accessible vehicle is critical to ensuring you have your freedom and mobility for miles and miles. Follow these tips to preserve your vehicle and maximize its potential.

Tip #1: Schedule Regular Maintenance with a Certified Mobility Dealer

Your local mobility dealer can help you schedule maintenance appointments. We recommend your vehicle be looked at by a certified mobility technician at least two times a year, or every six months. Whether you need a conversion check-up or the wheelchair ramp in your van stops working, our certified mobility specialists are trained in the operation and maintenance of wheelchair accessible vehicles and are here to help with any maintenance needs. During a maintenance check-up with a certified mobility dealer, you can expect your maintenance technician to:

  • Clean the floor, ramp, and door tracks of dirt and debris 

  • Lubricate hinge and pivot points, as well as door slides, and rollers

  • Check door and ramp fasteners and hardware for tightness

  • Check door alignment and operation

  • Check your vehicle’s battery

  • Clean and seal battery terminals

  • Test door, ramp, and kneel systems to ensure proper functioning

  • Ensure manual backup operation of your ramp is functional (for automatic conversions)

  • Check and replace any wiring as needed

  • Check tire pressure, and inflate tires as needed

Our certified mobility technicians are here to help you get the most out of your accessible vehicle. Keeping up with regularly scheduled maintenance will ensure your vehicle and its accessible equipment lasts for years to come.

All vehicle owners should keep up with a couple of universal maintenance tasks.

  • Oil should be changed approximately every 3,000 miles or every 3 months, whichever occurs first. 

  • Tires need to be rotated roughly every 6,000 miles to promote their longevity.

Tip #2: Keep Your Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle Clean

Keeping any vehicle clean is ideal, but when it comes to handicap accessible vehicles, cleanliness is vital to ensuring the proper function of your vehicle and its accessible equipment.

We recommend you take time once a month to clean your vehicle. Pay close attention to door tracks and the ramps which may take in debris from outside. This debris, if left untouched, can scratch conversion components, leading to the eventual breakdown of accessible equipment. Regular cleaning will allow you to use your vehicle longer while avoiding unnecessary maintenance costs.

Tip #3: Know Your Manual Overrides

In the event a ramp, lift, turning seat, or other powered accessible equipment in your vehicle stops working, all BraunAbility vehicles feature a manual override system. This manual override system will ensure you can get in and out of your vehicle safely, even when your powered accessible features cease to operate. Your mobility dealer will demonstrate manual operation maneuvers. Knowing how to manually override the accessible equipment in your vehicle will protect the vehicle from further damage until you can get your vehicle scheduled for maintenance.

Tip #4: Properly Insure Your Accessible Vehicle

Your local certified mobility dealer has connections with responsible brokers to help you insure your handicap vehicle.  Insuring your vehicle with a responsible broker will allow your vehicle to be properly appraised and taken care of in the event of an accident or other unforeseen circumstance.

Tip #5: Know When to Ask for Help

Whether you have a question about maintenance, financing, or insurance, our team of mobility specialists and trained technicians are here to help. Contact your local mobility dealer today with any questions.

How Do I Get Maintenance on My Wheelchair Van?

BraunAbility makes it easy to keep up with your wheelchair van maintenance. We train our dealer and technician network to sell and service your vehicle. BraunAbility also offers 24/7 roadside assistance, so you can always reach us when you need us. When you are ready for your six, 12, or 18-month checkup or beyond, call your local dealer to schedule a maintenance appointment. 

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