Scooter vs Wheelchair Power


On the process of deciding the best apparatus for a paralyzed loved one to improve his indoor/outdoor mobility and independence? There are two good choices you could consider: getting a scooter or a power wheelchair.

In choosing which is which, you may have to consider several factors: control and maneuverability, weight capacity, speed, power, user safety, durability, and of course, the price. Here, we give you several comparisons of scooter and power wheelchair related to these factors:

With regards to control methods, scooters are steered with a tiller, functioning like a bicycle’s handlebar. Scooters have 2 different drive types, the rear and front wheel drive. In power wheelchairs, the most common controller is a programmable joystick. In general power wheelchairs are maneuverable in small and tight spaces because of sophisticated electronic control methods.

The weight capacity of a rear wheel drive scooter is from 250 to 350 lbs. Heavy duty models can carry up to 500 lbs. Meanwhile, power wheelchairs can carry the same weight and because of features like power stand, power recline, power tilt and power elevation on some models, they can accommodate more kinds of seating and postural support.

On the speed of a scooter, most models have a variable type speed control knob so you can set the speed from 1 to 5 mph. while, power wheelchairs have a variable type speed control knob so you can set the speed from 1 to 5+ mph. With regards to their power capacities, front wheel drive scooters usually have a single 12 volt battery capable of traveling 5 – 10 miles before recharging. Rear-wheel drives have 2-12 volt battery capable of 15 – 20 miles before recharging. Most electric wheelchairs are equipped with 12 volt batteries capable of going 15 to 20 miles on a full charge over level terrain. Both use gel cell sealed batteries which are approved for transport.

On the issue of durability and sturdiness of these apparatuses, Scooters can usually break down into parts for placement in the trunk of a car and can be handled by vehicles with power or hydraulic lift. Power wheelchairs models don’t break down and are too heavy to be lifted easily.

Scooters are also less safe for use as a seat in a motor vehicle and more difficult to tie down, while power wheelchairs tend to be safer as a seat in a motor vehicle since they can accept a 4 point tie-down.

Have you decided already? With regards to price, scooters are less expensive than power wheelchairs. The range of features available in power wheelchairs tends to affect their prices. Whatever you choose to acquire, remember that it will have to depend on the condition of the disabled who’s going to use the mechanism and what are her/his limitations as far as mobility on a certain mechanism is concerned. That limitation will have to come from a doctor’s or a health care professional’s assessment.

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Author: Piyawut Sutthiruk

Losing weight will keep you healthy and have a long life. Cheer Up!

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