Best Power Wheelchairs Guide

Our Top Picks

Drive Medical

drive medical titan axs

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Read Our Review
top pick

Golden Technologies

golden technologies literider

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Read Our Review

Best Power Wheelchairs Guide

Our Top Picks

Drive Medical

drive medical titan axs

Buy Now
Read Our Review
top pick

Golden Technologies

golden technologies literider

Buy Now
Read Our Review

Top 10 Power Wheelchairs at a Glance

Product Name Starting Price Top Speed Drive Range Weight Capacity
Drive Medical Titan AXS Mid-Wheel Drive Powerchair $1,999.00 4 miles per hour 25 miles 300 pounds
Golden Technologies Literider Envy Power Wheelchair $1,495.00 3.5 miles per hour 15.5 miles 300 pounds
EZ Lite Cruiser Power Wheelchair $2,195.00 5 miles per hour 10 miles 264 pounds
Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair $1,987.00 4 miles per hour 26 miles 264 pounds
Pride Mobility Go-Chair Travel Power Wheelchair $1,499.00 3.7 miles per hour 13.2 miles 300 pounds
Pride Mobility Jazzy Elite HD $3,699.00 4 miles per hour 9.8 miles 450 pounds
Merits Dualer Power Chair with Power Elevating Seat $2,769.00 5 miles per hour 18 miles 300 pounds
Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline $12,950.00 5 miles per hour 25 miles 250 pounds
KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair $1,987.00 4 miles per hour 15 miles 265 pounds
Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair $1,499.00 5 miles per hour 15 miles 300 pounds

A power wheelchair can increase your independence and transform your mobility throughout your daily life. With so many advances since the invention was made about 70 years ago, there are more benefits to purchasing a power wheelchair now.

Seniors can easily eliminate the physical strain and hassle of normal wheelchairs, and upgrade to a better form of mobility. It’s important to note that not all electric wheelchairs are created equally. With many factors to consider such as cost and a large selection of products to choose from, switching to a power wheelchair can feel like a daunting task. We’ve thoroughly researched the top brands and products on the market to answer your questions and supply you with a guide to find the best power wheelchair to suit your specific needs.

Types of Power Wheelchairs

Transport

Transport power wheelchairs are a type of mobility chair for when you’re on the go. These wheelchairs are typically compact, easily maneuverable and lightweight so that you can take it to an outing or on public transportation. This is a great option for traveling and maneuverable mobility.

Folding

For a great versatile option, folding power wheelchairs offer transport and full-time mobility. The sling seating provides adaptable comfort. With the large rear drive wheels, you can go up to 6 miles per hour indoors and outdoors, and the battery can last up to 14 miles. The folding structure also allows the wheelchair to be stored and transported. With a little coordination and strength to move your folding power wheelchair to wherever you need it, it’s a great convertible product.

Lightweight

Lightweight power wheelchairs should be considered for anyone who needs portability without the heavy lifting. Many are unable to lift and maneuver heavy duty and standard electric wheelchairs, so finding a lightweight option is key. These particular products are usually made from aluminum or other lightweight metals, with a total of about 29-50 pounds, but can still carry a good amount of weight. There are now several portable wheelchairs that you can fit in your car, on a plane, and can easily be lifted by one person.

Travel

Travel power wheelchairs are designed for portability in order to take your mobility anywhere you need to go. The size of transport electric wheelchairs is very compact, allowing for easy access to public spaces and small surroundings. They also offer up to four mile-per-hour speeds, a 10-mile drive range, powerful U-1 batteries, and durable wheels for different types of flooring and surfaces. It’s good to know that being in a wheelchair doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice your desire to travel the world.

Heavy Duty

If you require more weight capacity with your mobility, then a heavy-duty power wheelchair will suit your needs. Larger and heavier individuals will find more comfort and durability with wheelchairs that hold 300 to 650 pounds. The heavy-duty power wheelchairs also offer a battery range up to 16 miles, so you can get a good distance out of this option.

Elevating

If you require more weight capacity with your mobility, then a heavy-duty power wheelchair will suit your needs. Larger and heavier individuals will find more comfort and durability with wheelchairs that hold 300 to 650 pounds. The heavy-duty power wheelchairs also offer a battery range up to 16 miles, so you can get a good distance out of this option.

Reclining

For added comfort, a reclining power wheelchair is a fantastic option. While these wheelchairs can offer the same mobility and maneuverability as other types, the back rest’s tilting and recline features allow you to enjoy the most comfortable position. This is especially great for individuals who spend most of their day in a wheelchair.

Outdoor All Terrain

All-Terrain power wheelchairs are heavy duty and built for outdoor activity. This means you can navigate through most surfaces and rough areas, so you can still have access to the great outdoors. Those who live in rural areas or want a wheelchair for use outside would benefit from this type of power wheelchair.

Best Power Wheelchairs

There are many different types of power wheelchairs and competitive products offering the best in powered mobility. To make your decision easier, narrowing down products from best value to purpose will help you select the right product for your unique needs. By examining customer reviews from company websites and the Better Business Bureau, we found the leading brands and products to help you find the best powered wheelchairs on the market.

  • BEST OVERALL – Drive Medical Titan AXS Mid-Wheel Drive Powerchair
  • BEST TRANSPORT – Golden Technologies Literider Envy Power Wheelchair
  • BEST FOLDING – EZ Lite Cruiser Power Wheelchair
  • BEST LIGHTWEIGHT – Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair
  • BEST TRAVEL – Pride Mobility Go-Chair Travel Power Wheelchair
  • HEAVY DUTY – Pride Mobility Jazzy Elite HD
  • BEST ELEVATING – Merits Dualer Power Chair with Power Elevating Seat
  • BEST RECLINING – Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline
  • BEST OUTDOOR ALL TERRAIN – KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair
  • BEST VALUE – Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair

Best Overall

Drive Medical Titan AXS Mid-Wheel Drive Powerchair

Our top pick overall for the best power wheelchair is the Drive Medical Titan AXS. This powerchair accommodates a wide range of seniors, carrying many body types and catering to different uses. You’ll receive great performance with a sleek appearance, and a great value with one of the most affordable power wheelchairs available.

We’re impressed with the 25-mile drive range that will get you farther compared to most power wheelchairs. The Titan AXS can also meet multiple needs in one product, making it an inclusive option for many types of users. Drive Medical offers great options financially as well as a broad range of features, and the company remains one of the fastest-growing competitors with durable products like the Titan AXS.

Features

  • Multiple seat and headrest combinations with height adjustments, swivel, and recline
  • Programmable controller with Bluetooth and positioning belt
  • Indoor and outdoor use
  • Rechargeable battery with controller chagrin port
  • Padded armrests
  • Flip-up footplate with height, depth, and angle adjustment

Product Specifications

  • Weight capacity of 300 pounds
  • 20-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 4 miles per hour
  • Product weight of 171 pounds
  • Battery charge drive range up to 19 miles
  • Mid-wheel drive
  • Flat-free tires
  • Electromagnetic brakes

Cost

The cost of the Drive Medical Titan AXS Mid-Wheel Drive Powerchair starts at $1,999, which is fairly affordable compared to other products on the market. You also receive free residential delivery when ordering, and you can order other premium delivery options including unboxing and setup. This power wheelchair comes with a lifetime limited warranty for the frame, 24-month warranty for the electronic controller and motor, and a 12-month warranty for the batteries.

Customer Support and Reviews

Drive Medical strives to offer excellent customer service, starting with a hassle-free return policy. Customers share that the cost is a significant benefit with the Titan AXS power wheelchair, and the appearance of the chair is very sleek compared to other models. Ultimately, the company offers a great product and you can’t go wrong with the value of the Drive Medical Titan AXS Powerchair.

Best Transport

Golden Technologies LiteRider Envy Power Wheelchair

The LiteRider Envy from Golden Technologies is excellent for anyone looking for a transport power wheelchair. Transport wheelchairs are necessary for individuals who are often on the go and are looking for a portable chair that moves with you wherever you need to be. The best option for transport power wheelchairs should be compact to fit on public transit and in your car, be lightweight enough for the average person to lift, and have a good drive range so that you can run errands and attend outings.

The lightweight compact size, excellent maneuvering in tight spaces, high weight capacity, easy disassembly, and affordability of the LiteRider Envy is why it’s a top pick. Golden Technologies is proud to offer the world’s lightest and most portable power wheelchair, and the company is a family-owned leader in the industry. The company is also known for using high-quality components with the goal of remaining a trustworthy brand that meets high expectations.

Features

  • 10 different colors to choose from
  • 4 lightweight pieces that disassemble
  • Under-seat storage basket
  • Large foot platform

Product Specifications

  • Top speed of 3.5 miles per hour
  • 300 pound weight capacity
  • 50 inch turning radius
  • 5 mile battery drive range
  • Product weight of 123 pounds

Cost

The Golden Technologies LiteRider Envy power wheelchair is one of the more affordable models starting at $1,495. The company also offers White Glove delivery at an extra charge to help with unpacking and setting up your new wheelchair. Customers also receive a five year warranty on the frame, and one year on the drive train, electronics, and batteries.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers agree that the LiteRider Envy is the lightest and most maneuverable power wheelchair on the market. The chair is compact and light enough for most customers to lift on their own, offering even more independence than a standard wheelchair. Ease of use and accessibility are some of the top reasons the company has an A+ review with the Better Business Bureau.

Best Folding

EZ Lite Cruiser Power Chair Wheelchair

The EZ Lite Cruiser Power Chair Wheelchair is the top folding power wheelchair with durable and lightweight benefits. Folding power wheelchairs offer a simple solution for long-distance traveling, and they’re great for easy storing. Folding wheelchairs are great for customers who need versatility and full-time mobility, and don’t want to install a lift to have portability.

The EZ Lite is made with lightweight aluminum alloy material and comes at a competitive cost. You also have the option for an additional battery, and it boasts a small turning radius to get around small spaces. For travelers, the whellechair is also airport friendly, make the EZ Lite Cruiser a top product for seniors who want more independence. The company is also proud to offer its patented quick-release motors, which can be disassembled to lighten the weight even more. There are numerous features on the EZ Lite Cruiser that competitors just don’t offer.

Features

  • Foldable frame for easy transport and storage
  • Lithium-Ion battery for a 10-mile drive range
  • Optional additional battery
  • Flip-back armrests
  • Removable seat and cover for easy cleaning

Product Specifications

  • 10-mile drive range on one battery, and 20 miles with the additional battery
  • Product weight of 44 pounds
  • 264-pound weight capacity
  • 33-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 5 miles per hour

Cost

The cost of the EZ Lite Cruiser Power Chair Wheelchair is fairly affordable with costs starting at $2,195,. This is a great value considering the versatility of the chair, and the company also offers a risk-free trial. The additional battery ranges from 10 Ah to 15 Ah, with costs from $339.95 to $489.95. If you don’t like your wheelchair, you can return it within seven days at no cost to you. This is almost unheard of as most companies make you pay for return shipping and/or a restocking fee.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers say that the EZ Lite Cruiser is light yet durable. The design and function of this power wheelchair offer ease of use and comfortability, and it may be the only product you need for independent mobility. Customers have also expressed that the customer service team for EZ Lite Cruiser is prompt and courteous, and the customer-friendly return policy and trial period provides peace of mind.

Best Lightweight

Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair

Lightweight power wheelchairs are a great option for seniors who don’t have a caregiver to help with lifting, and if you are looking for a product you can transport easily on your own. Most lightweight options weigh less than 50 pounds and still offer standard weight capacities. Portability is key for some when looking for a quality power wheelchair, and a lightweight option like the Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair will certainly reduce strain and injuries.

The Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair is considered to be the most lightweight option on the market. This chair only weighs 41 pounds, so many seniors will find independence since you may not need extra assistance with lifting and carrying. It easily folds for exceptional use for car and plane transport, so travelers should have an easy time bringing your mobility anywhere you go.

Features

  • Foldable compact aluminum alloy frame
  • Lightest weight on the market
  • Adjustable armrest
  • Under-seat basket
  • Extra lithium battery included
  • Removable seat, cushions., and cover
  • Six different colors to choose from

Product Specifications

  • 26-mile battery drive range
  • Product weight of 41 pounds
  • 264-pound weight capacity
  • 3-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 4 miles per hour
  • Folds into width size of 12.25 inches

Cost

The cost for the Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair is fairly average for lightweight products, starting at $1,987. It’s a great deal when you consider the adjustable features and the built-in extra battery backup with no added costs. There are other free accessories customers can take advantage of, and you’ll save money since you don’t have to buy a lift with this lightweight foldable chair. Your purchase comes with a two-year warranty to help cut costs if you experience any malfunctions or damage.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers feel more independent with the Air Hawk Portable Lightweight Power Wheelchair. Reviews share that the wheelchair charges quickly, it’s super light, it’s comfortable, and fits in the back seat or trunk of most cars. Customers seem to be impressed with how it’s easy to lift and transport the wheelchair, especially compared to other power wheelchairs that are advertised as lightweight but still may need extra assistance. Customer service is also friendly and courteous by offering travel bags and free accessories that customers may find useful.

Best Travel

Pride Mobility Go-Chair Travel Power Wheelchair

The Go-Chair Travel Power Wheelchair by Pride Mobility is helping seniors who don’t want to limit the ability to travel. Travel power wheelchairs should be able to maneuver easily through tight spaces and disassemble for convenient transport, while also offering comfortability. This is a great type of wheelchair for individuals who want to see the world with a convenient form of mobility.

The Go-Chair Travel Power Wheelchair offers everything you need for smooth travel and better comfortability than its competitors. The 25.5-inch turning radius allows you to fit into tight spaces and maneuver easily through life, and the two storage compartments beneath the seat allow you to take your belongings with you. The stadium-style seat on the chair adds extra comfort, there are flip-back armrests included, and you can go on and off the wheelchair without any hassle. Pride Mobility is a leader in the power wheelchair market and offers several products that are helping seniors gain extra independence and mobility.

Features

  • Six colors to choose from
  • Five-piece disassembly
  • Swivel stadium-style seat
  • Adjustable armrests
  • Two under-the-seat storage compartments
  • Large footplate

Product Specifications

  • 5-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 3.7 miles per hour
  • 7 miles battery drive range at 300 pounds, and 13.2 miles at 200 pounds
  • Weight capacity of 300 pounds
  • Total product weight of 128 pounds

Cost

The Pride Mobility Go-Chair Travel Power Wheelchair is an affordable option compared to competitors in the industry, starting at $1,499. Customers receive free curbside or indoor delivery, and you also have the option to get White Glove delivery for an extra fee. Free batteries are included in your purchase, and you’ll also get a five-year limited warranty.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers are happy with their Pride Mobility Go-Chair because it’s easy to use and maneuvers around homes and small areas like no other. Some customers are even surprised by how portable the product is, and it offers a ton of flexibility. Pride Mobility strives to be the friendliest company in the mobility industry, and reviews share good experiences and support with customer service.

Best Heavy Duty

Pride Mobility Jazzy Elite HD

Another great product from Pride Mobility is the Jazzy Elite HD power wheelchair. This is a heavy-duty wheelchair, which means it can be used to get through many obstacles in terrain and maneuverability. Heavy-duty power wheelchairs are the perfect option for individuals who need a higher weight capacity. These chairs should also remain durable for years and get you the distance you need with a sturdy drive.

The Jazzy Elite HD offers large front wheels to absorb and climb multiple types of surfaces and ensures effortless operation with simple maneuvering. It’s built to last and can handle a weight capacity of up to 450 pounds, which is much more than your average power wheelchair. The construction of the Jazzy Elite HD is what sets it apart, and there are many styles to choose from.

Features

  • Two-motor and front-wheel drive maneuverability
  • 60-inch belt for added safety
  • Durable vinyl upholstery
  • Limited recline high-back seat with headrest
  • Color-through shroud
  • Easy rear access to batteries
  • Optimal weight distribution

Product Specifications

  • 24-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 4 miles per hour
  • Weight capacity of 450 pounds
  • Battery charge drive range of 9.8 miles
  • Total product weight of 224 pounds
  • 14-inch flat-free drive wheels

Cost

The Pride Mobility Jazzy Elite HD power wheelchair is slightly higher in cost compared to competitors, but it’s a good value considering that it’s built to last. Starting at $3,699 you can have many durable features, as well as free delivery and technician set-up. Customers also receive a five-year limited warranty.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers of the Jazzy Elite HD by Pride Mobility say that the power wheelchair is extremely durable and is a great option for heavier individuals. Some also expressed that they had success driving on uneven and rough terrain. The comfortability combined with heavy-duty strength allows customers to feel powerful with full mobility, making this one of the more inclusive options in power wheelchairs.

Best Elevating

Merits Dualer Power Chair with Power Elevating Seat

Elevating power wheelchairs not only offer drive mobility but also help with accessibility in reaching for whatever you need. Wheelchairs like the Merits Dualer Power Chair that offer an elevating seat give seniors more options for grabbing objects from cabinets, higher visibility, and less-strained social interactions. Being able to elevate your seat means you’re not constantly looking up, so you’ll reduce injuries and feel more comfortable.

The Merits Dular Power Chair with Elevating Seat is a great option for versatility. Merits has been around since 1987, and the company continues to make innovative and cost-effective mobility products. The two-in-one chair has both front and rear-wheel drive for more control and maneuverability, and the power elevating seat gives you the ability to be raised five more inches from the base. Seniors who are shorter in size or want more capabilities with elevation will certainly find benefits with this power wheelchair.

Features

  • Power elevating seat to raise height up to 5 inches
  • Front and rear-wheel drive
  • Fully rotatable chair
  • Swing Away Joystick
  • Red and blue color options

Product Specifications

  • 21-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 5 miles per hour
  • Battery charge drive range of 18 miles
  • Weight capacity of 300 pounds
  • Total product weight of 189 pounds
  • 22 inch to 27-inch elevation

Cost

The cost for the Merits Dualer Power Chair with Power Elevating Seat starts at $2,769, which is cheaper compared to many competitors. Considering that many power wheelchairs have high extra costs for elevating seats, Merits provides a good value for those looking for this feature. Customers also receive a lifetime limited warranty, providing peace of mind when purchasing the Dular Power Chair.

Customer Support and Reviews

Reviews for the Duler Power Chair with Power Elevating Seat by Merits are very positive. Customers expressed that their chair exceeded expectations, and the fact that the seat both rotates and elevates allows for many more capabilities that users didn’t have before. Merits also offers a ton of manuals and information online for customers, so you can have further independence when setting up your new power wheelchair.

Best Reclining

Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline

Reclining power wheelchairs offer the ultimate comfortability in mobility. Reclining wheelchairs such as the Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline allows for users to recline the seat and elevate, so you get more mobility and can maneuver easily. You can find a comfortable position that suits your specific needs, and it’s a great option for individuals who spend a lot of time in a chair.

The Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline is one of the most innovative and full-featured products on the market today. Not only can you comfortably recline in the chair, but you can also be lifted and gain assistance standing. If you can afford it, you’ll get all of the amenities and independence you need with this power wheelchair.

Features

  • 18 by 18-inch seat
  • Power standing function
  • Power recline with power leg rest
  • Mid wheel power drive
  • Easy to use joystick
  • Large headrest with shoulder harnesses
  • Optional accessories including a food tray, cup holder, safety alarm, and more

Product Specifications

  • Top speed of 5 miles per hour
  • 25-mile battery drive range
  • Weight capacity of 250 pounds
  • Overall product weight of 289 pounds

Cost

The cost for the Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline starts at $12,950, which is steep, but also affordable compared to other standing wheelchairs on the market. Most of the additional accessories range from $20-$180, while the food tray is $450. Customers receive free shipping and a limited warranty when purchasing the Karman XO-505.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers state that the Karman XO-505 Fully Powered Standing Wheelchair with Power Recline is worth every penny. The wheelchair comes all-inclusive and is extremely beneficial for customers who need mobility and standing assistance in one product. Reviews share that the product is durable, and most users are pleased that it already comes 75% setup by the time it’s delivered.

Best Outdoor All Terrain

KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair

For anyone who spends a ton of time in the yard or in other outdoor areas, an outdoor all-terrain power wheelchair is the right choice for your mobility. These types of power wheelchairs are heavy-duty and can navigate through rough surfaces and terrain. You shouldn’t have to lose the independence of the great outdoors, so an outdoor all-terrain power wheelchair will have the power and durability to get you outside.

The KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair is one of the leading outdoor all-terrain vehicles, offering a low cost with incline ability and long battery life. The chair also folds for storage and transport, making it an even better option for seniors who are often on the go. It’s also good to have a power wheelchair that comfortably drives through your yard so you can easily do activities like gardening.

Features

  • Foldable frame
  • Flip-back/away leg rest
  • Large travel case
  • Incline ability of 12-degree slope

Product Specifications

  • Top speed of 4 miles per hour
  • Long-lasting lithium battery drive range of 15 miles
  • Weight capacity of 265 pounds
  • Total product weight of 59.6 pounds

Cost

The starting cost for the KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair is $1,987.00, which is affordable compared to other models. Other competing outdoor all-terrain power wheelchairs can well exceed $3,000, so you’ll find great value with this product. Free shipping and a 60-day money-back guarantee are also included in your purchase.

Customer Support and Reviews

The KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair is a great option for outdoor use, and customers are pleased with how compact it is for a heavy-duty wheelchair. Customers agree that aging shouldn’t stop you from having fun, and the KD Smart Foldable Power Wheelchair gives you that power and flexibility. This is a great option when the combination of lightweight, good speed, and easy storage is hard to find among most power wheelchairs.

Best Value

Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair

A quality power wheelchair is a necessity, and mobility doesn’t have to break the bank. A wheelchair that’s priced at a good value can get you extra amenities for free, helpful shipping, and a good warranty. Customers who don’t want to sacrifice the features they need but also are looking for affordability can certainly find a good value in the Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair.

The Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair by Drive Medical offers free batteries, cushions, seat belts, and more. It has all of the features you may need, and the company is proud to improve the quality of life for seniors with affordable options. With a lifetime limited warranty and multiple shipping options, you’ll get peace of mind and a great value with this power wheelchair.

Features

  • Rear-wheel drive plus electromagnetic brakes
  • Tension adjustable back upholstery and height-adjustable armrests
  • Seat belt, calf strap, swing-away footrests, and heel loops
  • 4-inch ground clearance

Product Specifications

  • 30-inch turning radius
  • Top speed of 5 miles per hour
  • Battery charge drive range of 15 miles
  • Weight capacity of 300 pounds
  • Overall product weight of 146 pounds

Cost

The Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair is one of the most affordable options on the market, starting at $1,499. Other free features are included, and the chair comes with a lifetime limited warranty. Shipping is free, and you can find premium shipping options for extra help with setup at an additional cost.

Customer Support and Reviews

Customers are very pleased with the affordability and quality of the Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Power Wheelchair. It offers customers less stress to know that you aren’t overpaying for mobility, and you don’t lack the standard features because of it. Most reviews also shared that the customer service team at Drive Medical is helpful and courteous.

How Do I Choose a Power Wheelchair?

Before purchasing a power wheelchair, you should know that they’re not all alike. To meet your specific mobility needs, many products on the market come specialized with certain features that vary across models and brands. Do you need a power wheelchair for full or part-time use? Will you be using the chair indoors and outdoors? Do you need high weight capacity, travel accessibility, or additional features like elevation? Of course, there’s also cost, shipping, setup, and warranty to consider. Once you recognize your needs, you can understand the different types of power wheelchairs and select one that suits your lifestyle.

Type of Wheelchair Use

How you use your wheelchair is one of the most important questions to ask before you get started comparing different options. Consider whether you’re using the wheelchair primarily indoors or outdoors, and if you’re looking for a full-time or part-time solution. Be sure to consider the maneuverability and turning radius of the power wheelchair, because you may need to get through small spaces and abrupt turns.

Every individual’s home is different and has some obstacles, so taking some measurements may be helpful for your research process. Some power wheelchairs offer heavy-duty and all-terrain driveability for active individuals, so be sure to look for these descriptions if you want to use your power wheelchair outside and in the yard. The size and materials of wheels can also make a large difference with terrain capabilities and durability, so find out if the chair includes mid-wheel drive and good suspension. Front and rear-wheel drive options are common among power wheelchairs, and having both can offer the best maneuverability.

Features and Specifications

There are many features offered on today’s models of power wheelchairs, and specifications vary. Knowing the speed of a power wheelchair will let you know how fast you’ll be able to get from point a to point b. You may want a fast speed (usually offered around five miles per hour) when you know you’ll be running errands and using the wheelchair outside, and others may not need faster speeds if you’re specifically using your wheelchair for home use.

The size of the chair should also be considered because your home may not be able to accommodate a large power wheelchair, and large sizes often mean more weight and fewer transport options. If you’re specifically looking for a full-time wheelchair for use both in and out of the home, consider looking for a foldable and lightweight power wheelchair. If you want durability as a larger individual, you’ll want a wheelchair that has a high weight capacity. Note that you don’t always have to sacrifice portability and lightweight options with a high weight capacity power wheelchair.

Travel Options

If you know that you’re going to be on the go and want to use your mobility to see the world, consider travel options in a power wheelchair. Lightweight, travel, and transport types of wheelchairs are the way to go because they’re compact and easy to take with you.

Transport power wheelchairs will let you easily store your chair on planes and in cars, can often fold, are compact and lightweight, and can save you money on not having to buy a lift for your car. Ask yourself how often you’ll need to transport the chair and what type of vehicle you’ll be moving it in. When traveling while in your power wheelchair, you should know the travel range and battery range of a product. Try to find a power wheelchair that gets four to five miles per hour, at least 15 miles or more drive range on the battery, and perhaps one that includes a backup battery for extended use as well.

Comfort

If you’re going to be spending a lot of your time in a power wheelchair, it’s important that you’re comfortable. If you’re prone to back pain, it may be wise to invest in a reclining power wheelchair that offers the utmost comfortability and versatility. Many wheelchairs have adjustable armrests and seating options, so you don’t have to stay in a stiff position all day. You’ll also notice large leg rests for those who need it, so pay attention to this detail as well as measurements. A stadium-style seat cushion will also give you added comfort, and you’ll want to make sure the seat and chair widths and heights match your body frame.

Longevity

Understanding longevity is key when looking for a wheelchair, especially if you’ll be useing the chair full time. Looking at customer reviews will shed some light on the longevity of products, and long warranty options can help with maintaining your power wheelchair. Since most power wheelchairs run on battery for portability and convenience, most individuals will want strong battery life and affordable options for replacements. Heavy-duty chairs and higher weight capacities are usually built with stronger materials, so these might last a few more years compared to other models.

Powered Wheelchairs vs. Mobility Scooters

Mobility scooters offer similar benefits to powered wheelchairs but have different builds and benefits. Power wheelchairs have four to six wheels and are also versatile while handling indoor environments better than mobility scooters. Mobility scooters are usually less compact, include handlebars, and aren’t the best option for individuals with limited upper body strength. Motorized scooters are better for speed and traveling around town, and they’re a good option if your main concern is moving around while having average upper body strength.

How Much Do Power Wheelchairs Cost?

Power wheelchairs typically cost around $1,000 to $5,000, while there are also more high-end products on the market than can exceed $10,000. You shouldn’t have a difficult time finding a quality power wheelchair less than $3,000 that will come supplied with all of the features you need. If you have more specialized needs and uses such as recline and standing capabilities, than you may be looking at those higher price points.

Payment Options

There are usually multiple payment options for power wheelchairs so that you can stay within your budget and even save some money. Private insurance, medicare, out-of-pocket payment, prequalified payment plans, and rental options are available to fit your needs.

Warranties

Most power wheelchairs come with a warranty, and it may be best to continue your search if you find one that doesn’t offer this. A lifetime limited warranty is ideal and usually covers specific parts in case they don’t function properly. Many companies offer different time frames for warranties on specific parts, while the frame will usually have a couple more years on the other electronic features.

Add-On Accessories

Add-on accessories may be appealing, especially if you foresee spending a good amount of time in your power wheelchair. Food trays, cup holders, upgraded seating and cushions, extra batteries and chargers, lights, travel bags and more are often available. Of course, these usually have an extra fee attached to them, but you can even find some companies who include some of these features at no additional cost to you.

Discounts

Some companies offer discounts on products, typically for pre-owned and refurbished products. This is a great option for individuals who are on a budget or are fine with older models. You should also look out for sale opportunities that happen seasonally or annually, discounts for veterans, and subscription offers.

Insurance and Medicare

For additional assistance in paying for your power wheelchair, be sure to understand your insurance and Medicare benefits. Medicare Part B offers 80% coverage for a powered wheelchair, and a Medicare-enrolled doctor has the ability to assure your need for a power wheelchair as opposed to other mobility devices. Getting a doctor’s approval for Medicare coverage will typically only cover certain styles and types of power wheelchairs. Your insurance company may also offer more or less coverage compared to Medicare, and you’ll usually have a copay. Reviewing your insurance terms and contacting your provider will give you a better idea of how you can get assistance with buying a power wheelchair.

Common FAQs

How long do power wheelchairs last?

Power wheelchairs can last several years and even over a decade. Spending a good amount of time in a wheelchair means there’s a good likelihood of some wear and tear, but there are definitely some durable and heavy-duty products on the market.

Good, quality aluminum-made power wheelchairs should last a long time, and the warranty will ensure even more longevity with specific parts. Technological advances have benefited the durability of materials and products overall, and we’re seeing more and more options being released with impressive specs.

How often should I charge my power wheelchair?

You should always ensure that your power wheelchair has a full charge for better safety and security. Batteries typically need up to 18 hours to charge, so it’s recommended that you charge your power wheelchair every night with light use or after every discharge for full-time users.

Do I need insurance for a mobility scooter?

Mobility scooters do not require insurance the way cars do, and they’re not used on highways or public roads. However, you do have the option to get insurance for your mobility scooter so that you can have added protection and security. Accidents can happen, so you may want to look into liability and property insurance to assure that you’re covered.

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