Sling Quality: How to Check if a Sling Is Good for Use


As you know, patient slings come in many styles, fabrics, working loads, and more from a variety of manufacturers.

Like any other type of care equipment, they require regular inspection to check that the quality and technical features are performing properly.

Poor quality or degraded slings can pose a health and safety hazard for residents and caregivers alike.

Below is a checklist to check if the quality of a sling or its effective use in long-term care:

Types of slings

First, know what types of slings you have on hand. Two main types of sling are hygiene slings and hammock slings.

For a hygiene sling, the leg straps must cross under the resident before attaching to the lift. For a hammock sling, the leg and arm straps stay on the outside of the patient’s body.

*For all sling types, the label must be on the top back of the resident when in the sling.*

How to check if a sling is good for use

  1. Lay out your sling on a flat surface
  2. Check all stress points. Twist and pull all straps, looking for signs of fraying, tearing, loose stitching, etc.
  3. Check entire sling for any rips, holes, bleach damage, and excessive staining.
  4. Check for heat damage. Look specifically in padded leg sections, and edges. Heat damage can look like shrinkage and cause the material to feel ridged and stiff.
  5. Check sling label and make sure the following can be identified:
    • Sling type
    • Sling size
    • Safe Working Load (SWL) details

These are just the basics from a quality perspective. (For care instructions, contact your sling manufacturer for proper use documentation).

If you’re in need of new slings and need help choosing the right brand and model, we can help you:

  • Audit your sling supply to determine any gaps and limitations
  • Understand the type of sling needed based on the resident’s health and mobility
  • Identify quality issues not immediately evident
  • Conduct load testing for your lifts (ceiling lifts, sit to stand lifts) to confirm optimal functioning and safe working load
  • Find the right sling for your resident’s needs at a reasonable price (SFI is a factory authorized dealer, all makes and models)
  • Train your team on proper sling operation and quality maintenance
  • Asset tracking to log your equipment online


Explore our sling collection

Need help finding the right sling, or have a specific request?

Contact us today to speak with our customer service team to see how we can help!

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