Hand controls allow a car to be driven without using the foot pedals. Hand controls are generally used in combination with steering aids, permitting the driver to steer using the left hand, while functioning the acceleration and braking using the right hand. With each of the following systems in the car, it can still be driven using the pedals and standard controls. If the driver can’t operate the vehicle with the foot pedals, then the vehicle being modified and substituted with hand controls will enable the driver to gain back some of their freedom.

What type of hand controls are there:

If the driver no or limited use of their legs, hand controls offer you the ability to accelerate and brake using your hands.

Some combine braking and accelerating in one control while others have separate controls.

You can combine foot brakes with hand controlled acceleration or foot accelerator with hand-controlled brakes if you have limited use of one leg.

The power needed to use many hand controls can be customised to match your strength.

wheelchair accessible vehicle

Types of hand controls:

Floor mounted controls

The floor-mounted controls are upright leavers attached to the floor on the left-hand side. This works by pulling back to accelerate, push to brake and a variety of different grasps are available. The position of the control and the amount of force you need to use it are both adjustable. Some also come with cruise control built-in so that the driver doesn’t have to keep their hand on the lever at all times.

Steering column-mounted controls

These controls can be mounted on the sides of the steering column.

For many steering mounted controls, you use one lever and push it to brake and pull it to accelerate.

Push-pull hand controls

Push-pull hand controls require upper body strength and good grip as the controls involve pushing the leaver to brake or pulling it towards you to accelerate.

Radial hand controls

Radial controls require less strength, as you push the lever down to accelerate or away to brake.

Gas ring

Ideal if your range of motion is limited, a gas ring is installed either above or below the steering wheel. This allows you to push or pull the ring to accelerate, you can choose based on which is more comfortable.

Electric accelerator

Using a standard accelerator can be exhausting for those with limited mobility as it requires a lot of effort for long periods of time. Electronic accelerators can be the ideal solution, there are a few types of electric accelerators available to choose from.

Electric throttle involves the same lever as the push and pulls controls mentioned earlier, but the accelerator functions with an electronic trigger installed on the end of the lever. The generator needs only a minor quantity of power and movement to function.

Electric brakes and accelerators are perfect for people with restricted mobility, movement and strength. There are different types to choose from, but they can be tailored to your unique abilities and requirements.

Understanding your own strengths and abilities will help you define which of the options will be the most effective for your needs. Don’t forget there are many different hand controls available and that the first one may not work out for you, but this is why there are lots of different options. For further help and advice, please feel free to get in touch.

Would you like an assessment?

If you are a disabled driver, or know a disabled driver in Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire or Northamptonshire, please contact PB Conversions for a free no obligation quote to assess what products would benefit you.