Scooter vs. Power Wheelchair: Which One Is Right For You?

Mobility vehicles tend to fall into two major categories: Scooters and power wheelchairs. But which option is right for you? Let’s take a look at some of the features of scooters and power wheelchairs, and when each might be the best option.

Typical Features of Scooters

Mobility scooters are typically used outdoors, though some are suitable for indoor use, too. They come in a wide variety and are usually designed to accommodate the longer distances you might travel while on vacation or while running errands. Typically, scooters:

  • Have larger turning radiuses
  • Weigh less than power wheelchairs
  • Feature a delta tiller for steering
  • Come in three-wheeled options for improved maneuverability
  • Disassemble or fold up for easy transportation

Scooters come with a variety of accessories and are often designed to be easily portable.

Typical Features of Power Wheelchairs

Power wheelchairs tend to be heavier duty mobility vehicles than scooters are. They are often used in indoor settings because of their excellent maneuverability, and a power wheelchair is likely to be covered by insurance if a doctor deems it medically necessary. Typically, power wheelchairs:

  • Are easily maneuverable
  • Weigh more than scooters
  • Feature a joystick for steering
  • Do not have options for disassembly

Power wheelchairs tend to be more stable than scooters, thanks to their design. They are not as easy to transport as scooters are, and you may need a vehicle lift to transport a power wheelchair.

When a Scooter Might Be the Best Choice

Scooters are usually the best choice if you are looking for a mobility vehicle for mostly outdoor use. Homes with tight corners and turns are difficult to navigate with a scooter. Many users appreciate the fact that scooters are lighter and that some can be folded or disassembled, meaning that you don’t need a vehicle lift to transport them. Scooters are great choices for running errands, traveling, and even going on vacation.

When a Power Wheelchair Might Be the Right Choice

Power wheelchairs are practical options for people who need a mobility vehicle for indoor use, particularly around the house. Power wheelchairs are more stable than scooters, and their seats are designed to keep you as comfortable as possible when you spend many hours a day in the chair. If you’re performing daily activities, like cooking or using the bathroom, a power wheelchair is more agile and can get you closer to the counter or the toilet than a scooter can. Many power wheelchairs are capable of outdoor use, too, and are designed to have long-lasting batteries so that you may move about freely during the day.

Choosing a Power Wheelchair or a Scooter

These are some of the basic differences between power wheelchairs and scooters. We would be happy to talk with you to help you choose the best mobility vehicle for your needs. Please contact us.