There are currently 300,000 people in the UK using electric mobility scooters.
Some choose a walker, cane, crutches, or a wheelchair to help them get around. Others are partial to the safety, comfort, and freedom that a mobility scooter provides.
Those who suffer from bone, ankle, or ligament damage in their knees will appreciate the use of a mobility scooter. It also provides independence for those with joint pain and rheumatoid arthritis. Individuals who suffer from oxygen loss and need to conserve their energy will also be grateful for the freedom provided by a convenient, portable personal vehicle.
How can you find the right mobility scooter for you? Let’s take a look.
Where Can I Find an Electric Mobility Scooter?
A simple search-engine lookup can help you find a mobility scooter retailer near you plus you can check on the full range in our own showroom. Many can also be purchased directly from manufacturers and resellers.
Be sure to take your scooter for a test-drive before purchasing it. Consider how it looks and feels.
You will want to take into account such factors as speed, battery life, adjustability, and weight. If you feel uncomfortable on your scooter’s seat, it is probably not the one for you.
Many scooter-sellers will take insurance if you can produce a signed note from your physician stating that you need a scooter for mobility because of a disabling physical condition.
Some resellers have financing programs, and others will offer nice-sized discounts on older models.
Scooters range from base models, which cost around £649, to four-wheel, all-terrain, heavy vehicles at around £2,000. Check with your insurance company to see what is covered.
What Kind of Scooter Do I Need?
The type of scooter you will invest in will depend largely on your mobility needs and budget.
Two-wheeled scooters, which are also known as electric bicycles or mopeds, have low noise and zero emissions. They can travel for 20 to 25 miles on a single charge and can go 2-3 times faster than a four-wheeled mobility vehicle.
Standing scooters or knee scooters are great for those with only one immobile leg. They are inexpensive, steerable, and easy to put together. Knee scooters are often used by those recovering from foot or knee surgeries, amputations, breaks, or strains.
Three-wheeled scooters are lightweight models that do well both indoors and on pavements. With prices from £300-700, these scooters are easy to maneuver. They are also faster than four-wheeled models.
Four-wheeled indoor electric scooters are built for comfort and speed. They get a great battery range but don’t corner as well as three-wheeled scooters. These models run from about £300 to £3,200.
Four-wheel travel scooters can be used to run errands around town. They are easy to take apart and put back together. The price can run anywhere from £700 to £2,700.
Four-wheel heavy-duty scooters are durable and can be driven on the streets or grass. They can roll across gravel paths, and are easy to maneuver around public buildings. These models are “road-ready,” and come equipped with turn signals and lights.
Heavy-duty scooters can run anywhere from £621 to £3,000. They have higher ground clearances, a wide range, and higher weight capacities.
Think About How You Will Use It
If you are planning to use your scooter at home and indoors when you visit your friends, you may want to consider a smaller folding model with easy portability. These will fold and fit easily into the boot of your car like some of those models from Pride.
If you will be driving your scooter outside to get to the shops, you will probably want to consider a four-wheel model that can be used on the street. Many come equipped with sizeable baskets.
You will also want to consider speed when making your purchase. Most mobility scooters come in two speeds: 4 miles per hour for indoor driving and 8mph for outdoor use.
Scooters need to be charged frequently, and larger models will need more electrical power. You will need to plan to charge your four-wheeled scooter fully before heading out to perform your errands and have a way to charge it again once you return.
All scooters can be purchased along with a variety of accessories that can customise them to your needs. Most are hand-operated, with brakes and a steering column that allows drivers to move them forward or backward.
Some scooters can serve as a chair in restaurants or homes. You will want yours to be narrow enough to fit through the doorways you will be using. Door widths in new homes are now subject to building regulations to accommodate wheelchairs.
Some safety accessories people look for include an oxygen tank holder or a holder for their walking stick or crutches. Street add-ons include a horn, lights, turn signals, and side mirrors.
You may also choose such comfort features such as a cup holder, a cover for your scooter in the rain, and storage compartments. There are also phone holders, armrest bags, and trailers to hook to the back of your bike if you are shopping for more than a few things.
A scooter is an investment that you will want to last for a while. Don’t waste your money on things that will look nice, but will only be used infrequently. Instead, think carefully about where you will be going in your scooter, and which accessories will make your life the most comfortable and free.
The Best Mobility Scooter
The best mobility scooter for you may not be the right one for someone else. Consider your budget, mobility needs, and personal preferences when test-driving, and purchasing your vehicle.
For more information, contact us today.