Housing equipment maker Lixil Corp. said it has developed an automation system that allows people using wheelchairs and strollers to open and close their home doors without any pushing or pulling.
The Doac accessories can be added to the entrance in one day without large-scale refurbishment work, according to the Tokyo-based company.
“Elderly individuals and stroller users will be able to use our product with no anxiety regardless of whether they have disabilities,” a Lixil representative said.
Under the system, the door can be locked and unlocked with a remote control. The motor of a device installed on the upper part of the door works to open and close it.
Doac is also fitted with a support feature to fully open and shut the door automatically, even without the remote control unit, when the user manually unlocks and lightly pushes or pulls the door, according to Lixil.
Lixil asked more than 1,000 wheelchair users for their opinions about home door usage conditions.
The survey results showed that they “need the assistance of families and caregivers” and “must close the door behind myself as the entrance is too narrow to turn my wheelchair.”
“We will be happy if our product helps wheelchair users feel like venturing out every day,” a company official said.
Prices of the Doac system will start from 208,000 yen ($1,936), excluding tax and installation charges. Lixil is expected to begin accepting orders in August and delivering from Sept. 1.
Doac cannot be set up on some kinds of door, so a free examination will be provided to those who visit the company’s outlets to confirm if their homes are compatible.