The debate between best electric wheelchairs and mobility scooters has raged on for years. While some consumers prefer a scooter, others stay loyal to their wheelchair. Some consumers have a difficult time choosing between the two. The details below will help guide you towards your preference and choose the one that is best suited to your needs.
What are Electric Wheelchairs?
A power wheelchair is run by battery and an electric motor instead of using manual effort. The user is able to drive the wheelchair by the touch of a button. It is useful for those who have limited use of their hands and for those who suffer from extreme fatigue due to exhaustion from using a manual wheelchair. Electric wheelchairs are capable of going long distances, turning in tight spaces and enduring tough terrain. Most electric wheelchairs are foldable and conveniently fit into closets, car trunks and SUV’s easily. It gives the user independence inside and outside of their home.
What are Mobility Scooters?
A mobility scooter is an aid similar to a wheelchair. However, it is made to look more like a scooter. It generally has two or three wheels, swivel seat, handlebars and run by chargeable batteries. Those who use a mobility scooter should have good balance and the capability to use both hands for steering purposes. Scooters are larger than wheelchairs and are not foldable. They require specific equipment to attach to the car or you will need to have a large van to bring it with you on your daily routine. Mobility scooters are often used by those who are able to walk a few steps, stand and sit upright without support.
Electric Wheelchair Pros and Cons
- Ability to travel
- Tight-turning radius
- Light weight wheelchair models available
- Variety of seating options
- Beneficial accessories
- Travel long distances
- Easily fits into a car trunk or SUV
- Variety of wheel styles available
- Variety of battery choices
- Ability to handle tough terrain
- Moves with just one touch of your hand
- Battery operated
- Regular charging of the battery required
- Regular maintenance required
Mobility Scooter Pros and Cons
- Beneficial for those who have mobility issues that doesn’t require a wheelchair
- Ability to be customized
- Easy to assemble
- Fast speed capabilities
- Charge battery on a regular basis
- Provides less stability when compared to power wheelchairs
- Unable to turn corners at high speed due to stability issues
- Weigh more when compared to powered wheelchairs
- Not foldable
- Not compact
- Can’t be used for travel
- Limited use in the house and other indoor spaces due to their size
- Most models cost more than a power wheelchair
Comparison of Wheelchairs and Scooters
When you take a close look at the two mobility devices you will notice a variety of differences. The electric wheelchair has the ability of catering to a variety of issues. You can arrange and move the leg rests for your comfort, add helpful accessories in specific places for your convenience, operate and drive the wheelchair with a touch of just one control, never have to worry about stability issues, conquer tough terrain, choose from a variety of seat pads and cushions, fit into small areas, turn around in tight spaces, travel and customize it to fit all of your needs. Scooters are large, wide and have restricted access to small areas, they are difficult to use indoors, especially in a house or apartment, the seat area is one size fits all with most models, you have to use both hands to drive the scooter, it is difficult to fit into a car trunk, you can’t fold it up and store it, traveling is difficult and it often doesn’t meet travel regulations set by national and international standards and it is barely customized to fit your specific needs. Scooters are generally for those who have minor mobility issues and are not in need of a wheelchair.
This comparison between the electric wheelchair and the scooter will help you narrow down the right choice for you. Generally, if your doctor has recommended that you use a wheelchair, you have a variety of mobility issues, you need a stable way of getting around and you want to feel comfortable in a customized chair, you will want to consider an electric wheelchair. One wheelchair that is a #1 Best Seller on Amazon is the Rolstoel. It only weighs 50 pounds, folds in seconds, handles tight turns, is compact, easily fits in your car or SUV and is highly suitable for travel.
What to Consider When Choosing
You may have a clear idea by now of what you need. Or, you still may feel like you can’t decide. There are a variety of things you should consider that will help you make your decision. If you just need something to get around in when you leave your home, go grocery shopping, go to the mall or other public places a scooter might be the right choice for you. Since a scooter is usually too large to fit in a house successfully you will want to feel confident that you don’t need assistance from the scooter in your home.
On the other hand, if you need a mobility device that will easy go from home use to outdoors and everywhere in between you will want to consider an electric wheelchair. If you prefer to adjust your legs comfortably, enjoy a spacious seat, operate the chair with just one hand and easily fold and fit your chair into a car, you will want to seriously think about choosing an electric wheelchair.
While both options have pros and cons, you will want to choose the one that has the cons you can easily deal with and accept. If you are going to spend every day worrying about losing balance on a scooter, think carefully about your choice. You don’t want to spend every day stressed out. You want to live your life to the fullest and choose the mobility device that will keep up with you and your busy lifestyle. Choose carefully and wisely and soon you will find yourself solving the debate between the two options.