Choosing the best folding electric wheelchair can be a daunting task. There are many different models on the market and the quality can vary quite a bit.
Folding electric wheelchairs can range in price from £1000 all the way up to £3000+. They also come with a variety of different features depending on the model.
Just a few years ago the choice was much more limited, but in recent years many companies have come out with different wheelchairs. As a result, quality has improved quite a bit.
Over the years we have tested many different wheelchairs here at Folding Mobility. In this article we are going to be revealing our favourite folding electric wheelchair in 2020. We have based this on a variety of different factors. These include:
Ease of use
How easy it is to transport
Is it easy to store?
Can it be taken on planes?
How it looks
Versatility – Where can it be used
We have considered all the above to decide on the best folding electric wheelchair. Whilst there were several wheelchairs that were very close at the top, there was one that stood out from the rest.
Our favourite folding electric wheelchair “The 1”
Our top choice for the best folding electric wheelchair is “The 1” from Better Products for Disabled. This chair stood out to us for several reasons. Firstly, the price is lower than we would expect for a wheelchair of this quality. In fact we actually believe that this wheelchair is under-priced.
Throughout 2019 and 2020 we have tested lots of different wheelchairs, and these have ranged in price from £1000, to over £3000. What we really like about “The 1”, is it feels much more premium than other chairs in the same price bracket.
Pros of “The 1”
Price – As we mentioned the price is nearer the lower end for a folding electric wheelchair. In our testing we did not find anything close to this price that compared on quality.
Ease of use – Like many folding electric wheelchairs, “The 1” is very easy to use. It folds and unfolds in a matter of seconds and the controls are easy to operate. The hand control has a joystick that provides excellent control and makes the wheelchair extremely easy to manoeuvre.
Transport – This is a big factor for many people when choosing a folding electric wheelchair. One of the main considerations, is whether it fits in the boot of a car. The good news is, that once folded “The 1” is quite compact, this means it will fit in most car boots with plenty of room to spare.
Storage – As we have already mentioned, this wheelchair is lightweight and compact when folded, this means it is ideal for storage. Once it is folded down it can easily be tucked away in a corner or a small cupboard.
Air travel – As standard this wheelchair comes with 12Ah lithium batteries, these cannot be taken on planes. However, you can upgrade to a 10 Ah battery which can be taken on flights.
Versatility – Due to its lightweight and powerful motor ”The 1” is surprisingly versatile. It can be used on a variety of different terrains, including uneven and lose ground. It also performs quite well on grass. However, we would not recommend driving on wet grass.
Battery Life – This is mid-range for the chairs we tested. We did test some chairs that had a battery life of up to 25 miles. “The 1” will last for around 10 miles, so still not bad and unless you plan on long trips, this is more than adequate for most people’s daily use.
Cons – Reasons this might not be the best chair for you
Whilst there are plenty of pros to this wheelchair, it is also important that we mention any potential negatives. These are reasons you might decide this is not the best folding electric wheelchair for your own personal needs.
Max weight capacity – This wheelchair has a maximum user weight of 20 stone. We also found that the performance did drop slightly on steep inclines once the user weight surpassed 18 stone. This was not a huge drop in performance, but it was noticeable.
It is important to note, that up to 18 stone we did not notice any difference in performance.
You must buy airline approved batteries separately. This is only a small negative and airline approved batteries are not that expensive. Once you add this additional cost, the chair is still very affordable compared with similar models.
The horn noise – Really this is just nit-picking, but we weren’t keen on the horn noise. It was more of a beep than a horn. With that said, it is very loud and certainly alerts people of your presence.
These were the only real issues we found with the chair, and in our opinion the only one that could be a deal breaker is the weight limit.
Obviously if you are over 20 stone, then this is not going to be the best chair for you.
Main Features of “The 1”
Currently just comes in white. However, we are told new colours are coming. Including: blue, black, red, yellow, and pink
Easy to fold and unfold
Due to being a narrow chair it easily fits through doorways
Perfect for outdoor use
Works great on uneven terrain
Anti-tip wheels to the rear
1 X 12 Ah battery (not airline approved)
Affordable 10 Ah batteries available for upgrade
Battery range on single charge – 11 miles
Max user weight capacity – 20 stone
Wheelchair weight including batteries 4.2 stone
In conclusion, if you are under 20 stone, we would recommend this wheelchair. For the price nothing else really came close.
In the next section we will be looking at the best folding electric wheelchairs for people who are over 20 stone.
3 Best Folding Electric Wheelchair for over 20st
There are lots of folding electric wheelchairs available with a higher weight capacity. Generally, these will always be slightly more expensive than lower weight capacity models. This is mainly due to the chair materials needing to be slightly more robust.
Below you can see our 3 Best folding electric wheelchairs for people over 20st.
Foldalite Pro – Max weight up to 23 stone
There are several reasons that we like the Foldalite Pro. Firstly it is still under £2,000, so it is quite a reasonable price for the quality it provides.
It is also very nice to drive. It has a top speed of 4mph, and the ride is very smooth. This is due to the chairs advanced suspension system and is very effective when you are travelling on rougher terrain.
Below are some of the main features of the Foldalite Pro:
Price – £1994.95
2 different colours to choose from (Blue and silver)
Our last option with a higher weight capacity of up to 31.5 stone is the F19 from Better products For Disabled. This is the same company that makes “The 1” which was voted our best folding electric wheelchair at the top of this article.
Just like “The 1” the quality of this chair is very high. It can carry up to 31.5 stone and despite this, it is still extremely light at just 4.6 stone in weight.
The ride on the F19 is very smooth and it can easily manage most everyday terrain.
Below are some of the main features of the F19:
Price – £2100 (still a great price for this quality of wheelchair)
Available in Black and white
Very easy to fold and unfold
Good on all types of terrain
2 X 6Ah lithium batteries (airline approved)
Battery range on a single charge 20 miles
Wheelchair weight 4.6 stone
Finding the best folding electric wheelchair can sometimes seem like a challenge. There are plenty of choices, and there are various things to consider before you purchase.
With that said if you are under 20 stone and are just looking for a compact folding electric wheelchair, then we 100% recommend “The 1” from BPFD.
Based on our own testing, it cannot be beaten on price. It has all the features of a £2500 wheelchair but is £1000 cheaper. Whats more Better Products for Disabled offer fantastic customer service. This includes after care, such as service and repairs in your own home.
Also, if you have any questions please leave them in the comments below.
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