Sturdy and durable enough for everyday use yet light enough to travel just about anywhere with, lightweight electric wheelchairs are, on average, around 15 to 60 pounds, enabling them to fold into the back of the trunk of your SUV or even be used for transport on a cruise ship. In fact, some of the latest examples of lightweight power chairs – as they are sometimes known – are TSA and airline-approved thanks to their spill-proof and flame-proof battery systems.
In this article, we’ll discuss just about everything you need to know about lightweight power chairs, from benefits and buying tips to cost factors and seemingly everything in-between, so you can be better prepared when shopping for yourself or a loved one. To kick things off, let’s take a look at some primary benefits.
Some of the benefits of lightweight power wheelchairs include:
• They’re lighter than traditional wheelchairs and mobility scooters
• They’re more compact than mobility scooters
• They’re perfect for travel and on-the-go users
• They’re easy to store – no need to invest in or reconstruct a separate storage area
• They demand no additional equipment – no costly vehicle adaptations such as hoists, lifts or ramps are needed
Buying a Lightweight Power Wheelchair: What You Need to Know
When purchasing a lightweight power chair, the environments where you’ll be using it the most must be taken into consideration (indoors/outdoors) as well as what features you require, specification demands like total weigh and weight capacity and, of course, budget. Buying the right lightweight power wheelchair that best fits your needs and lifestyle will ultimately provide you with mobility and comfort for your daily activities.
In putting these considerations into a list, answering the following questions will help you make an informed decision before investing in your chair.
• Do you plan to use a lightweight power wheelchair indoors, outdoors or both?
• Will you be transporting your chair around in vehicles, cruise ships or airplanes?
• What is the maximum weight capacity and wheelchair weight preferred?
• What top speeds will you need the wheelchair to be able to reach?
• Do you require special seating options for extra comfort?
• What is your budget?
Features to Keep an Eye On
We can tell you from vast experience in the wheelchair industry that the following represent the key features of lightweight power chairs:
• Portability – These chairs are ideal for travel, users constantly on the go and those with storage challenges.
• Durability – Whichever lightweight chair you decide to purchase, we wholeheartedly recommend it be built with high-quality materials, be durable and have the capacity to get you around freely with no issues.
• Comfort – First and foremost, lightweight power chairs should be designed for comfort and convenience out of the gate. If you are not comfortable in your power wheelchair, you may experience problems and you’ll end up not being happy when using it. What’s more, an uncomfortable seat can cause sores to develop – but on the positive side, this may encourage you to improve your posture.
• Maneuverability – When choosing your lightweight power wheelchair, there is the possibility that you will need to make sure that it can support you during daily tasks. Look at specifications such as turning radius to determine the maneuverability of the chair – it should be maneuverable in helping you run errands such as shopping, visiting the park and going to see family/friends.
The Cost Factor
Like everything else we purchase in life, the price of your lightweight power chair must be a top priority, especially when taking into consideration a budget. The average price for a new lightweight power wheelchair is approximately $1800 to $3900, and these prices are dependent on model type, size, weight capacity and features; of course, higher-end and more expensive models will bring with them additional features, technology and custom options.
What You Should Know About Medicare Coverage
Based on our latest research, Medicare does not cover the costs associated with a lightweight folding power wheelchair, however, it may provide some of the coverage for “Durable Medical Equipment” (or DME) if you meet specific requirements that your primary physician prescribes.
Before getting approved for lightweight power wheelchair coverage, you must have a face-to-face examination and written prescription from an accredited doctor.
A power wheelchair can increase the independence of the aging senior demographic and transform their mobility throughout their daily lives. With so many advances made since the invention about 70 years ago, there are more benefits for seniors when purchasing a power wheelchair in general than ever before.
Seniors can easily eliminate the physical strain and hassle of standard wheelchairs while upgrading to a better form of mobility – it’s as simple as that. With that being said, it is important to note that not all electric wheelchairs are created equally, and with so many factors to consider (such as the aforementioned cost and key features), switching to a power chair can feel like a daunting task for seniors in particular; you can be sure that representatives of 1800Wheelchair have thoroughly researched the top products on the market to answer your questions and provide you with a guide to find the best power wheelchair to suit your specific aging senior needs.
Some Closing Thoughts
It is always a good idea to consider your needs and how your new lightweight wheelchair will be able to enhance your lifestyle. Shop around and do your research first before making a purchase – which would be the exact same advice we’d give to someone shopping for a car – and take into consideration everything we’ve covered in this blog article when making your decision about what type to buy.