Are Electric Wheelchairs Better than Mobility Scooters?

Are Electric Wheelchairs Better than Mobility Scooters?

The two most common mobility devices are power wheelchairs and mobility scooters. Both devices allow users to navigate daily living if you have issues walking. Though both mobility scooters and power wheelchairs will get you where you need to they do have important differences. We will cover what differentiates mobility scooters from power wheelchairs, as well as how to select whether an electric wheelchair or mobility scooter is right for your specific needs.

Mobility Scooters

If you or someone you know needs some help getting around mobility scooters are by far the most popular and more affordable option. These battery-powered mobility scooters are perfect for people who need moderate mobility assistance. Mobility scooters require arm and torso strength as well as dexterity to operate the tiller (steering column). Mobility scooters can be a wonderful for travel: many models fold or disassemble to be easily store in your vehicle, home, or airplane. This means means you wouldn't have to purchase an vehicle lift. Mobility scooters in all shapes and sizes and we offer a bunch of lightweight models that are perfect for your next trip. 

Buyers can choose between smaller three-wheel scooters that have tighter turning radiuses but tend to be less stable. If you are looking for more stability a four-wheel scooter will give you that and allow you to navigate various terrains. Mobility scooters are a great option for many people, but they have a few limitations. They aren't a great option for people who lack arm/torso strength or for use in small narrow spaces. Mobility scooters are bigger than electric wheelchairs and require more space maneuver and store. 

Golden Technologies Buzzaround Carry Manual Folding Portable Lightweight Mobility Scooter

Golden Technologies Buzzaround CarryOn Mobility Scooter

Power Wheelchairs

In all reality mobility scooters are more entry-level options. Mobility scooters are designed for aren't completely immobile but still need help for tackling longer distances. A power wheelchair on the other hand is designed for folks who are more dependent on a mobility device for everyday life and getting around inside their home. As compared to your standard manual wheelchair, electric battery-powered wheelchairs can be operated with a joystick which allows the user to control the chair with minimal effort overall.

Power wheelchairs are more compact than mobility scooters. Not only do they have a smaller footprint, but they can easily navigate smaller spaces inside your home. Sadly, most power wheelchair models lack the portability that many mobility scooters offer. Since they often times lack portability they can be difficult to transport, however there are some folding  and disassembling models available.

Golden Technologies Crick Manual Folding Transportable Power Wheelchair

Golden Technologies Cricket Folding Power Wheelchair - 39.3 lbs. total 

Questions to Ask Before Buying

When deciding to purchase a power wheelchair or mobility scooter, the following questions are a great jumping off point:

  • What is the level of mobility of the person in need of a mobility device?
  • How often will the mobility scooter or power wheelchair be used? All day, every day, or only every so often?
  • Does the potential user have sufficient arm/torso strength to operate a standard scooter steering column (tiller).
  • Will the user be traveling a lot?
  • How critical is portability of the device in relation to their lifestyle?
  • Where will the device mainly be used? 

 Are Electric Wheelchairs Better than Mobility Scooters?

There really is no right or wrong answer here as it depends on your specific needs and wants from your new mobility device. A mobility scooter is for a potential user with some upper body strength and enough dexterity to control and maneuver the mobility scooter. On the other hand, a power wheelchair is a better option for someone who lacks overall mobility and would most likely use the power wheelchair daily. Both mobility scooters and power wheelchairs have their pros and cons, but it is completely up to you on what you think will fit your daily needs the best. Our highly trained mobility experts are ready to assist you with your research, feel free to contact us via phone or email at anytime. Don't forget to ask the mobility expert about your special pricing.


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