Best Electric Wheelchairs
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We evaluated 14 electric wheelchair models, and after a careful review identified the 4 best electric wheelchairs to buy in 2023.
- Good selection
- Electric wheelchairs and mobility scooters
- Broad range of pricing options
Zip’r Electric Wheelchairs offer a broad selection of models with various features and various price ranges. Foldable options are also available. Models Range from $749 to $2,199
Pride Mobility Jazzy Carbon
- Great for Traveling
- Fits into most trunks and closets
- Lightweight, but powerful
Approved for airline travel and folds down to the size of a stroller. The carbon fiber frame keeps it light—just 43.6 pounds, and the batteries are covered by a 13-month warranty.
Pride Jazzy 600 ES Mid-Wheel Power Chair
- Great Maneuverability
- 16-mile battery comes standard
- Tight turning radius of 20.5 inches
The Pride Jazzy ES 600 is a product of Pride Mobility and features advanced med-wheel suspension technology for better comfort and indoor and outdoor performance.
Feather Mobility Ultralight Power Chair
- Great Value
- Comprehensive warranty
- Affordable and lightweight
Feather Mobility’s Ultra Lightweight Power Chair weighs just 33 pounds; The seat shrinks down to just 13 inches, and the back folds down to only 28 inches. Priced under $2,300.
Merits Health FWD/RWD Dualer Power Chair
- Great Power Elevation
- Electric seat recline and elevation
- 5-year frame warranty
Merits Health “Dualer” is for indoor and outdoor use. The chair can rise up to 27 inches, helping you reach higher cabinets or bar counters and has a tight 19.6 turning radius.
Shoprider Streamer Sport RWD Power Chair
- Great Mid-Sized Option
- Adjustable seat
- Good for small spaces
The Streamer Sport by Shoprider is an affordable option for navigating smaller spaces. With a 3-inch ground clearance and rear-wheel technology, riders can comfortably transition between different environments.
Journey Air Elite Folding Power Chair
- Great Folding Feature for Transportation
- Weighs just 29 pounds with battery
The lightest power chair on the market, the Journey Air Elite is suitable for indoor and outdoor use. Features include electric brakes, joystick maneuverability, and a USB charging port.
How to Shop For an Electric Wheelchair
We evaluated 14 electric wheelchair models, and after careful review identified the 4 best electric wheelchairs in 2023. To draw our conclusions, we looked at sales data, analyzed consumer reviews, consulted with seniors & checked with experts in the industry. While many of the electric wheelchairs we reviewed might be good choices, we found four options that also stood out for key buyer needs: Great to Transport (Pride Jazzy Passport), Great for All Sizes (Merits Heavy Duty Power Chair), Great Value (Drive Medical Cirrus Plus), and Great Battery Life (EV Rider Allure). Additionally, we’ve listed Scooters ‘N Chairs as a great place to shop for an electric wheelchair.
This guide provides you with the expert advice needed to choose the essential features for your mobility needs. We’ll also answer the top power chair questions asked by seniors and others looking for an electric wheelchair to improve their quality of life.
- Not all chairs include the most-requested features. Know what you’re getting for the price, including shipping and handling.
- Performance (range, capabilities) vary by user needs. Know how you’ll use the chair before buying.
- Understand the difference between buying in-store and online, especially when it comes to warranty and return policies.
What to Consider When Buying an Electric Wheelchair
If you’ve decided that an electric wheelchair is needed to improve your mobility and help you live a more active lifestyle, it’s best to know the facts before buying. Safety should be your primary concern, but you should also consider some other important features:
Warranties from manufacturers generally last one to two years, says Henley, covering motors, electronics, joysticks, frames, and batteries. Typically, tires, seats, and back cushions are not covered.
Type and Performance
Think about your performance needs carefully, as chairs come in different sizes and capabilities.
- Portable or folding electric wheelchairs are basic, light and can be disassembled for easy travel; however, the product’s overall weight could affect how easy it is for you to transport.
- Heavy-duty electric wheelchairs are built for people who weigh 400 to 600 pounds.
- Front, mid, or rear-wheel chairs can affect the overall performance. Front-wheel wheelchairs have better traction and a smoother ride. Mid-wheel wheelchairs are known for being easy to maneuver in small spaces, while rear-wheel wheelchairs are better over curbs and rough terrain.
Battery life is an important requirement for those using the chair day in and day out, while those who hope to keep it in the car only for travel may need no more than a few hours of power. Making a list of your top performance needs prior to purchase is recommended.
Electric Wheelchair Costs
Prices for electric wheelchairs can range from $2,000 for a standard, portable power wheelchair to $6,000 for a fully adjustable and highly maneuverable model. When comparing costs, make sure to ask what accessories are included. Items such as battery chargers, spare batteries, footrest extensions, and headrest cushions may cost extra.
Like scooters, it can be tough to get Medicare and private insurance companies to cover some or all of the cost of an electric wheelchair. A certified occupational therapist or physical therapist and your doctor must evaluate your needs and deem the chair medically necessary. Unfortunately, insurance experts tell us that this approval process can take months and often prove difficult and unsuccessful.
Ask the retailer if more affordable financing options are available.
Should You Buy an Electric Wheelchair or Mobility Scooter?
Mobility scooters and powered wheelchairs are both helpful for people with mobility issues. Mobility scooters have three or four wheels, and their customization features are limited. If you can still transfer in and out of most chairs and sitting positions, you may benefit from a scooter.
Electric wheelchairs have four to six wheels and can be designed to your needs. An electric wheelchair can be a helpful alternative or necessity for anyone unable to operate a wheelchair manually or for those with a disability or progressive illness that makes walking impossible.
Our Search for the Best Electric Wheelchairs
Searching for the right electric wheelchair just might be toughest part of making a purchase. To bring recommendations to you, we reviewed sales data, analyzed consumer reviews, consulted with seniors and talked to experts in the industry. Our search started with 14 of the most widely considered electric wheelchairs and ended with 4 recommendations. The approach we took to narrow down the top power chairs was as follows:
- We considered multiple electric wheelchairs
We began our search with 14 popular electric wheelchair models. We looked at consumer reviews and read the user’s comments. Companies with an average rating of less than 3 of 5 stars were disqualified. The models with favorable reviews were noted favorably. Models with suspect positive reviews or those with only a handful of reviews were excluded from the list.
- We checked availability
We looked at the top electric wheelchair options available to purchase online to be shipped to anywhere in the country. Chairs ranged in price from just over $1,000 to $6,000 or more with added accessories. If it wasn’t available to ship across the country, it was cut from the list.
- We shopped for electric wheelchairs & followed our buying tips
We narrowed our scope to companies that met our wise buyer criteria. Based on different buyer needs, we presented the top choice for power chairs in each category. Not all chairs offer every feature. Our top chairs represent a variety of the best of what’s available on the market today.
Best Electric Wheelchairs (Reviewed in 2023)
After our evaluation, we selected the four best electric wheelchair models: Pride Mobility Jazzy Carbon, Feather Mobility: Ultra Lightweight Power Chair, Merits Heavy Duty Power Chair, and Merits FWD/RWD Dualer Power Chair.
Pride Mobility: Jazzy Carbon Review
Great For Transport |
We like the Pride Mobility Jazzy Carbon because it is designed specifically for taking in the car, on planes, and even on cruises. (It’s approved for airline travel.) The carbon fiber frame keeps it light—just 43.6 pounds, including the battery. It takes up about the same space as a large stroller when folded, and can easily fit into your car trunk or closet. It is designed to accommodate up to 300 pounds.
The Jazzy Carbon can reach speeds of up to 3.7 miles per hour and go 9.3 miles in a single charge. The seat backs are padded and you can plug in your smartphone or tablet using the USB charging port.The batteries are covered by a 13-month warranty.
Pride Mobility: Jazzy 600 ES Mid-Wheel Power Chair Review
Great Maneuverability |
The Jassy 600 ES from Pride Mobility’s most beneficial feature is its advanced suspension technology. The power chair uses mid-wheel drive power and two spring suspensions to absorb bumps and navigate different terrains. In addition to comfort, the chair has a tight turning radius of 20.5 inches, which is beneficial for indoor use.
For storage, recliner the chair to use compartmental space. The Pride Jazzy 600 ES comes with a 16-mile battery range, one of the longest in the industry, and a top speed of 4 mph. The chair can support weights up to 300 pounds.
This electric wheelchair is priced mid-range compared to other Pride Mobility chairs, just under $3,700 at the time of publishing. However, there is a 5-year warranty on the frame, a 3-year warranty on various parts, and a 13-month warranty on the battery.
Feather Mobility: Ultra Lightweight Power Chair Review
Great Value |
Feather Mobility offers an Ultra Lightweight Power Chair for slightly less than Pride Mobility Jazzy Carbon. At just 33 pounds, this is one of the lightest electric wheelchairs on the market. It’s also airline-approved, and the seat shrinks down to just 13 inches and the back folds down to only 28 inches.
We like the Drive Medical Cirrus Plus Folding Power Wheelchair because it is a foldable chair with just the right amount of upgrades to make it feel like high-end transportation without the shocking price tag. Priced under $2,300, it has high marks from consumers for being safe, comfortable, and having all the features you want without an additional upgrade cost. It looks more like a traditional wheelchair, and it accommodates weights up to 240 pounds.
The warranty is also more comprehensive than the Jazzy Carbon:
- Warranty on frame: Lifetime limited
- Warranty on wearable parts: 6 months limited
- Warranty on electronics: 1 year limited
- Warranty on batteries: 6 months limited
Merits Health: Heavy Duty Power Chair Review
Great For All Sizes |
Merits Heavy Duty Power Chair
Sometimes, you need a chair that’s up to the task of handling more weight or a variety of surfaces. Many chairs on the market only accommodate up to 300 pounds, and even those that can handle more weight may be too narrow by design to be comfortable for those with a larger body frame. Be sure you know the size of the seating area before purchase to ensure a good fit.
We like the Merits Heavy Duty Power Chair because it weighs just 57 pounds and folds/unfolds in just 2 seconds. Consumers praise its durability; it comfortably seats adults weighing 330 pounds or more. It’s designed to accommodate heavier frames, but it also takes up minimal trunk space. This chair gets rave reviews for working at up to 5 miles an hour on a variety of surfaces, including cobblestone and turf. It handles inclines well, and the battery life is good for a minimum of 6 miles under normal use.
Merits Health: FWD/RWD Dualer Power Chair Review
Great Power Elevating Wheelchair |
Merits Health “Dualer” is for indoor and outdoor use. It has a lower seat to increase stability, and the power-elevating seat comes standard. Rise up to 27 inches, helping you reach higher cabinets or bar counters.
Toggle between front-wheel drive for high obstacle terrain, or rear-wheel drive for smooth, paved areas. The seat also reclines, and you can navigate smaller spaces thanks to a tight 19.6 turning radius.
Merit Health products are also backed by a limited lifetime warranty and a frame warranty of 5 years.
Shoprider: Streamer Sport Rear-Wheel Drive Power Chair Review
Great Mid-Sized Option |
The Streamer Sport electric wheelchair by Shoprider is a rear-wheel drive power chair, which helps with speed, agility, and comfort. This chair’s battery life is shorter, about 8 miles on one charge, but it’s a smaller-sized chair—perfect for navigating tight spaces.
The Streamer also has a 3-inch ground clearance—perfect for hopping curbs and transitioning between environments. Its weight capacity is 300 pounds. Compared to other models, this comes with fewer advanced features, but it’s price is affordable at under $2,800.
Customers receive a 1-year warranty on the frame and certain parts, and a 6-month warranty on the battery.
Journey Air Elite Lightweight Folding Power Chair Review
Great Folding Option |
The Journey Air Elite is one of the few power chairs on the market that also folds for easy transportation and storage. Just pull on the seat handle to collapse and load it into your vehicle.
This chair is designed to fit through doorways and under tables and desks. To operate the chair, riders can use a joystick and the electric brakes. Keep in mind that this chair has a less powerful battery than other products—it’s only recommended for inclines up to 3 degrees. Still, its battery range is up to 10 miles, and the chair weighs only 29 pounds, battery included.
Journey offers a 12-month warranty on some parts and pieces.
Electric Wheelchairs USA Review
Electric Wheelchairs USA is an online retailer that offers power chairs from top manufacturers like Pride Mobility, Merits Health, Drive Medical, and more. We especially like how easy it is to shop and compare various products on its website. The company is transparent about pricing, and many product pages have videos showcasing specific features of each chair. Electric Wheelchairs USA abides by a low-price guarantee: If you see another website with a lower price within six months of purchase, they’ll happily refund you the difference.
All products come with free shipping, usually within one to three business days, and the return policy is generous. Electric wheelchairs can be a big investment, so the company offers two financing options. Currently, the company is offering a free one-year home service contract with the purchase of a power chair.
To learn more about Electric Wheelchairs USA, read our full review.
Scooters ‘N Chairs Review
Great Online Reseller
If you’re in the market for an electric chair, start by researching the models featured above. When you’re ready to buy, Scooters ‘N Chairs has a wide selection of electric wheelchairs (and motorized scooters) to choose from.
What sets the company apart is the ease of shopping. You can quickly compare products and find options that work for you. The electric wheelchair options are grouped into outdoor chairs, heavy-duty chairs, and portable chairs. Scooters ‘N Chairs only sells models with manufacturers’ warranties and ships to your door.
Related Electric Wheelchair Resources
Readers of this electric wheelchair guide also found these related articles helpful.
Frequently Asked Questions about Electric Wheelchairs
Am I better off with a lighter chair or a more durable one?
The weight of a chair doesn’t always indicate how sturdy it is. In fact, there are many portable and lightweight chairs on the market that are designed to hold extra weight or work on rough terrain. While a battery will have to work harder for a heavier chair, it is typically designed with that fact in mind. Don’t feel that you have to choose between portability and quality.
My house is small. Can a motorized wheelchair fit?
Most electric wheelchairs are designed with portability in mind, and this includes fitting in small spaces. You should always measure the doorways, hall spaces, entrances, and exits of your home, office, or other frequented areas to be sure, however. It is also wise to consider how small a folding chair will actually become and the space requirements you’ll have in your transport vehicle before buying.
What is the difference between indoor and outdoor chairs?
Most chairs are made to do some travel in smooth, flat terrain at any location. Others are specially designed to handle outdoor surfaces such as grass, gravel, and inclined slopes. Know the pros and cons of each chair, regardless of how it is marketed. Some wheelchairs that are advertised as suitable for outdoors don’t make the grade when it comes to keeping traction and pushing over rough surfaces.
Will Medicare or my insurance cover my electric wheelchair?
Most insurance companies, including Medicare, won’t cover an electric wheelchair until you’ve seen the doctor and it was determined that you need one to perform daily activities inside your home. If the device is considered a medical necessity, you may be eligible for coverage. Check the Medicare mobility device guidelines for more facts. If you’re seeking a chair for outdoor, leisure, or travel activities, it likely won’t be covered. Expect the process of getting approved to take months, and you may have to pay out of pocket before being reimbursed – even if approved.
Can I use my electric wheelchair on public transportation?
In order to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, bus and rail service is required to accommodate electric wheelchairs and their operators, provided the total weight of the occupied chair is less than 600 pounds.
What is the difference between an electric wheelchair and a mobility scooter?
Electric wheelchairs are generally foldable, where a mobility scooter is not. Electric wheelchairs, therefore are generally easier to transport and store. Mobility scooters often move faster but may be less stable. A quick reference tip for the difference – if you see handlebars, it’s a scooter.
Concluding Thoughts on Electric Wheelchairs
Bottom line: The right electric wheelchair can dramatically improve your quality of life, provided you choose the features that are best suited to your personal needs.
There is no perfect product for everyone, and that’s why it is highly recommended that you take an honest assessment of how you will use your power chair in your daily life – not just when traveling. While finding the perfect match of features can be time-consuming, the value you’ll receive by buying the proper chair for your needs – and wants – will be worth it.
Pick the right chair from the start and avoid frustration, expensive returns, and the hassle of dealing with customer service and sales teams.
|Great to Transport||Pride Jazzy Passport||$$|
|Great for All Sizes||Merits Heavy Duty Power Chair||$$|
|Great Value||Drive Medical Cirrus Plus||$|
|Easiest to Operate||Merits Dualer Elevating Seat Power Wheelchair||$$|