12 Best Mobility Scooters in 2017
Mobility is a funny thing. When we are babies, we struggle to obtain it and then we are off to the races once our legs are stable. As you get older, you can lose your mobility whether it’s from a disability, bad knees or just a rotten back. There are many reasons your movement can begin to suffer, but scooters are a way to keep you mobile while still keep you off your feet.
When searching for the best mobility scooter, you need to consider areas you might otherwise skip over on another type of product. There isn’t going to be much variation in the design department or even when it comes to features as those generally depend on how much you are willing to spend. Instead, we are going to focus on three key areas we feel are the most important, and it isn’t the top speed or colors.
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Do You Need a Travel Scooter or Something for Home Use?
As their name implies, mobility scooters are meant to be mobile, making them a great option to pop in the trunk. If you are buying a scooter for just that purpose, you can go ahead and skip ahead to our next section. If you are more in the market for an all-around machine that can serve your needs at home, there are several special things to consider.
Mobility scooters that work best in the home need to be to be able to pass through doorways. The ADA accessibility standard is 32-inches, which means you will want to be under that mark in most cases. Turning radius is important as well while top-speed and range can take a backseat to things like comfort and non-skid wheels. On that note, pay close attention to the type of tire and think about your type of flooring or any surfaces you plan to traverse.
Size & Range
Are you looking for the best mobility scooter to use on vacation or for long shopping trips? Even if you just plan on taking your scooter to the market instead of your car, you need to consider range first and foremost. We have never seen a tow truck come to scoop one up, so always keep the distance you need to travel in mind when looking at range ratings. Due to their design, most aren’t made to go over 15 miles or so which is quite the journey when you are only going 4 miles per hour.
The size of your scooter also plays a part in your decision to go outdoors. Any stores or shops should have wide enough entrances to get through, but you will still want to think about the isles, escalators, and ramps. If you have to scoot a longer distance to hit wheelchair accessible ramp, it can put a drain on your battery. You also have to consider the fact that not all places will scooter-friendly due to their layout, it just depends on your locale and where you need to go.
Every scooter worth its salt comes with a big basket on the front. Some will come with two however or kick in a cup holder. You can find many types of “extras” on any given model of scooter, but that’s the last thing you need to focus on. Instead, you should consider additional features that only come on select models or variants.
Delta steering wheels, adjustable armrests, and non-marking wheels are all things to look for depending on your needs. Some scooters make battery stacking easier, while others actually come with additional batteries o of the box. These are all things you may not need, but will certainly want to consider when looking for your new scooter.
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The minds behind Pride Mobility have produced plenty of scooters over the years including their Go-Go Sport Electric Travel Scooter. Despite its size, this one can be disassembled and broken down into five parts if you want to transport it and take it to the store or mall for some shopping. If that’s the case, you will be thrilled with the battery life as it is rated up to 12 miles.
The mileage also allows you to leave the vehicle at home if you want to get out and about and it’s sturdy enough to handle a few bumps in the terrain. The scooter comes with two sets of panels in case you do encounter some wear and tear and has LED lighting in the front for nighttime use. If you plan on using the unit around your home, it’s 43-inches long and 20-inches tall in case you want to get an idea about your door frames. It’s of average weight at 99 pounds with the heaviest piece clocking in at 52 pounds. The seat-to-ground range for this one is listed at 20-22-inches.
The Go-Go Sport has a top speed of 4.7 mph, which is a little slow compared to others on our list, but it’s not meant to burn up the streets. It can hold a total of 325 pounds and comes with several accessories including a pouch, basket and drink holder.
Our first three-wheeled scooter comes from Golden Technologies. It’s the popular Buzzaround but is the EX model which is a Long Range Travel Scooter. In other words, it’s for people that need to go long distances and go you will as this one has a whopping 18-mile range.
This comfy little wonder sits on 9-inch wheels, and while it may not be as large as a four-wheeled scooter, it still offers up the same type of features and has spring suspension to boot. It has a taillight on the rear and headlight on the front for safety and can easily be broken down and tossed into a large trunk or vehicle. It’s rated for 330 pounds and has a 4-inch ground clearance. The heaviest piece on this one is 46 pounds, and it measures around 45-inches long by 22-inches wide. The distance from the ground to the top of the seat is between 22 – 24-inches.
From the reliable braking system to the anti-tip wheels, the Buzzaround EX brings a lot to the table. Despite its smaller stature, it’s heavy at close to 150 pounds. That may put it out of the running for some consumers that need a lightweight solution, but if weight isn’t a concern, you’ll want to consider the EX seriously.
The Active Care Medical Spitfire Scooter is arguably the best option for consumers that need something smaller. Due to its size, it can easily maneuver through places other scooters cannot, and the fact that it has three wheels allows for a nice, tight turning radius.
The Spitfire is one of the lighter scooters on our list if you are looking for something you can easily handle alone. That’s due to the fact the heaviest piece weighs 28 pounds, a far cry from 40 and 50-pound sections on similar scooters. It breaks down into five pieces without any tools and measures 42-inches long by 19” wide. It’s narrow, which makes it ideal for home use as it’s well below the ADA standards for doorways. It can still handle up to 300 pounds however and comes complete with anti-tip wheels for additional safety.
Other tech specs of interest for the Spitfire include a top speed of 4 mph, foam-filled 8-inch tires, and a ground clearance of 2-inches which is standard. We also like the fact the tiller is adjustable along with the armrests which tilt for an additional measure of comfort. On the downside, the range is only half of what you’ll find on larger scooters – something to keep in mind.
The best mobility scooter from Drive Medical is the Scout DST, which is a 4-wheeled machine. The DST label stands for Dynamic Suspension Technology, which in a nutshell means you will get a smooth and comfy ride thanks to suspension coils. That’s far from the only feature this one has going for it.
This is a larger scooter with a maximum weight capacity of 325 pounds. It remains nimble with a turning radius of 55-inches and a top speed of 4.5 pounds. It’s a little faster than other models and can carry a bit more weight as well. Overall, the Scout DST measures 42-inches long by 36-inches wide with a height right around 21-inches. Unfortunately, this one will not fit through most doorways unless you have wide or custom entry ways already in your home. It’s more for the outdoors and has a substantial range of 15 miles which should be sufficient enough for most consumers needs.
This scooter is extremely comfortable for long journeys and has all the features you could as for with adjustable armrests, a Delta tiller and a big sturdy basket on the front. You won’t get any choice when it comes to colors unless you want to swap panels out although it looks quite nice in Dark Red.
Brand names mean a lot to consumers. The trust factor increases when it comes to medical equipment, including the types of mobility scooters we’ve covered today. While we love what the Scout DST brings to the table, their Compact Scout Scooter is an excellent alternative if you need something a wee bit smaller.
The Scout Compact will zip through the doorways of your home or down the road to the store. It has the same top speed of 4.5 mph as the DST model but is sans the unique suspension. That cuts down on the weight, and at 42-inches long and 21.5-inches wide, it is a little powerhouse. The only drawback would be with the range as it can only get you 9 miles down the road before you need to recharge. Well, that and the way it breaks down. While it comes apart into the standard 5-piece configuration, the heaviest piece is almost 40 pounds on this model.
The 24V motor makes this a peppy scooter best suited for consumers that are looking for a machine to get them a few blocks or give them some freedom at home. It is not the best option for long distances, and while it is very narrow, it may be a little too heavy for some to break down and transport alone.