Wheelchairs

Wheelchairs, Folding Electric Wheelchairs, Powerchairs and portable powerchairs can be a great alternative to mobility scooters. They provide the same options as scooters, but often offer additional comfort features, not to mention their fantastic turning circle. Making them the preferred choice for any in-home use.

About Wheelchairs

Unfortunately “the wheelchair” used to have a stigma attached to it and many people prefer to use a mobility-scooter of it’s “wheelchair” counterpart. This is surprising, especially when it comes to portable mobility devices. A folding electric wheelchair will outperform a folding mobility scooter on many levels, is priced around the same and often offers a more comfortable alternative. We always recommend that you try both options so you can make an informed decision.

Mid-wheel drive vs Rear-wheel drive

Most larger powerchairs tend to be mid-wheel drive, while electric folding wheelchairs are rear-wheel-drive as a rule. You can read about the different advantages below.

  Rear-wheel drive Mid-wheel drive
Turning Circle
  • Larger turning circle
  • Can be more challenging to maneuver in tight spaces
  • Smallest turning circle
  • Tightest turning radius
Handling obstacles and inclines
  • Less stable for tipping as most of the weight is located at the back of the chair, large rear wheels and anti-tip wheels ensure additional safety
  • Well suited to use on slopes, as front and back casters will prevent tipping forward or backward
Handling at speed
  • Most stable at higher speeds, due to most of the weight being located at the back near the drive wheels
  • More sensitive to the change of direction
Smoothness of ride
  • Dependent on the size of the casters, as a general rule rear-wheel drive chairs have larger casters, hence provide a smoother ride
  • Six wheels are going over the bumps and sending more shocks into the frame and sear
  • The addition of suspension assists in absorbing the impact and deflecting the bumps and conform to the surface, therefore, the seat will remain straight even if wheels are at different heights
Reversing
  • Less sensitive, the larger casters have more contact with the ground. Hence the weight is distributed over larger areas. This leads to the chair moving in the desired direction even before the casters swivel
  • More sensitive to change direction, due to the size of the casters, smaller casters result in an instant change of direction
Ease of attendant operation
  • The easiest option for an attendant to use
  • The operation can be quite tricky for an attendant
Other Advantages
  • Maybe the right balance between indoor maneuverability and outdoor or uneven ground ride quality
  • Manoeuvring is more intuitive, as the drive-wheel is in line with the user’s centre of gravity.

Did you know

Most electric wheelchairs come with Plane-safe Lithium batteries, making them an excellent option for overseas travel, interstate travel and Cruises.

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