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A Transfer Bench - By Any Other Name

Many safety devices go by various different names. Some of the more popular ones transfer benches are otherwise referred to as include transfer benches, tub transfer chairs, extended tub benches, extended shower chairs, and bathtub transfer seats. The fact is that anytime you hear someone say “extended” (whether in reference to a tub transfer bench, an extended bath chair, an extended transfer bench, etc.), the shower chair is more than likely a type of transfer bench.

Transfer Bench Features

That purpose of a transfer bench is to provide more stability, quite simply, to make it easier to access and exit the bathtub or shower. A transfer bench is placed over the outer ledge of the tub, so that instead of having to climb over the ledge, the individual can simply slide across the transfer bench, and, by doing so, easily bypasses the ledge and gets over into the tub. Some transfer benches are also able to be used as shower chairs (the person would sit on the side that’s in the tub). Tub transfer benches provide users with feelings of independence and security, since they are easy to slide across. They minimize the risks of those unfortunate trips or falls. 

Additional Features to Look For

Many standard transfer benches are equipped with backrests and armrests to optimize the user’s comfort and stability, as well as rust-resistant materials and drain holes for easy maintenance. Some are also designed with non-slip or cushioned seats for extra comfort. When choosing a transfer shower chair, you can browse between models with weight capacities ranging from 300 to 550 pounds. Users who are slightly over the correct weight limit, such as a person who weighs 325 pounds but is using a shower chair with a weight capacity of 300 pounds, may find that the chair is supportive enough despite the discrepancy. Keep in mind that if anything breaks in the chair due to the user having a weight capacity that exceeds the recommended weight, repairs or replacements may not be covered by the warranty.

For users who need a more heavy duty solution, a bariatric transfer bench is recommended for safe and secure showering. These products are constructed of stronger materials and a wider sized bench. Another consideration is the material of the tub bench, which can be either aluminum or plastic.

Many shower transfer benches have removable backs that can be switched to the other side for alternate direction use. In addition, most have adjustable legs to ensure an ideal height for the user that will also fit well over the tub wall. Aside from promoting comfort, this adjustability ensures that the chair is sitting securely and leveled between the height of the bathroom and bathtub floor heights.

Some bath transfer benches are also equipped with suction feet to hold securely to the floor of the bathtub for user safety. For most users, it is important to choose a transfer chair for tubs with an arm for added stability and leverage.

For individuals with limited mobility or delicate skin, a sliding shower chair or sliding transfer bench equipped with a sliding seat reduces the effort necessary to slide over and lowers the risk of skin tears. We also offer commode transfer chairs, which are tub benches that also serve as commodes, offering dual functionality to your shower chair.

Shower Chairs vs. Transfer Benches

There is one main similarity between the two: Both shower chairs and transfer benches can help when it comes to user security. Comparing transfer benches with shower chairs can easily help one to determine the differences. For starters, over-the-tub shower chairs are larger and often longer than a standard shower chair. These bathtub and shower transfer benches are built for helping someone access and exit the bathing area. A normal shower chair simply is stationary and can be placed inside (and sometimes outside) of the tub, but it will not aid the user with transitioning from one side of the tub to the other.

Both a shower chair and a medical transfer bench primarily act as bath assist chairs. In all cases, their main goal is safety. Many transfer benches can be ordered with a lot of the same features of a standard shower chair. One can find swiveling transfer benches just like a swiveling shower chair for once you’re in the tub, and some benches even have the ability to attach a commode to them. Many of them are reversible, and in such cases, handrail mounting will depend on what side of the bathtub one uses for access.

Transfer Benches Cost

Almost all bathtub transfer benches are made with the same materials as a standard transfer chair. This allows for them to have a reasonable cost, yet still be effective and sturdy. The plus side is that there are more options available when it comes to transfer benches. The reason why they often cost a little more is simply because they are larger pieces of medical equipment and therefore often require more materials for construction. AvaCare only offers the industry’s premier and top rated transfer bench products.

 

At AvaCare Medical, we offer fast shipping free of charge on all shower transfer chairs, so place your order today, and it will be shipped by tomorrow, at no extra charge! For any concerns regarding our tub transfer bench products, simply check out our Bathroom Safety Made Simple guide to see how you can get the most out of your bath safety products, or give us a call at 1.877.813.7799.