If you are looking to buy an electric wheelchair in Canada, you would probably be doing as much research as you would while buying a car. Sure enough, your wheelchair will be as special to you as your car. With only one difference – it will create a much bigger difference to your life. It will literally take you places!
This article will talk about a few things that you need to consider before buying your wheelchair. So let us get into that and our reviews of some of the best electric wheelchairs in Canada.
Buying an Electric Wheelchair in Canada
Following are some of the factors to keep in mind while buying your wheelchair – in Canada or anywhere else in the world. The order in which you will consider these factors is very specific to your usage pattern and requirements. Needless to say, you will have to balance out certain factors, but try to buy one as closely aligned to your needs as possible.
Factors to Consider Before Buying an Electric Wheelchair in Canada
Before you start looking at the best electric wheelchairs out there, do consider the following factors.
Adherence to Safety Standards
Power wheelchairs in Canada have to go through a rigorous approval process, regulated by the Medical Devices Directorate (MDD) within the Therapeutic Products Directorate (TPD) of Health Canada. It should be your top priority to check if your potential buy adheres to the safety standards set by the above regulatory authorities.
Total Width of Wheelchair
The total width of your wheelchair will decide whether you will have access to all rooms in your house. Standard doorways in our home are about 30 inches wide and your wheelchair needs to have a total width of less than 28 inches for you to comfortably pass through these doorways.
Range on Full Charge
You may be going long distances on your wheelchair. Keep an eye on the battery range on full charge. It should comfortably cover the to and from distance that you frequently travel to.
Weight of your Wheelchair
The weight of your wheelchair dictates a lot of things like ease of maneuver, how far will it go on full charge, pickup in speed and ease and comfort of riding on it. It is best to buy a wheelchair with optimal weight – not too heavy and not too light
Convenience of Air Travel
If you are a regular air traveler it is important that your wheelchair is easy to fold and carry along during your travels.
Battery Charging Time
Most wheelchair batteries take about 6-8 hours to charge fully and yours should not be any different. Except the first time, when you will have to charge your batteries till the time they are fully charged (12-14 hours). Sometimes new wheelchairs come with moderately charged batteries, sometimes they come with close to full charge. But it is a good practice to fully charge your wheelchair batteries before starting to use it.
Customer Service Centers
Your wheelchair, whether you buy it online or from a physical store will have undergo professional maintenance from time to time at the customer service centers. So, it is important to have service centers nearby to where you stay, for convenience of travel to and from.
Now let us have a quick look at some of the best electric wheelchairs in Canada.
#1 Porto Mobility Ranger Quattro
The model with 21.5 inch seating width weighs about 60 pounds in total and has a maximum carrying capacity of 350 pounds. The chair is powered by 2 x 500 watt motors and is equipped to carry heavier users.
- Overall width of 25 inches for a seating width of 21.5 inches. One of the most narrow-width wheelchairs for maximum access
- Comes with travel case (cover for wheelchair) and cup holder
- High on durability and ride comfort
- Total range of about 20 miles on full charge. Wheelchair comes with 2 x 10 Ah lithium ion batteries
- Comprehensive warranty scheme with 4 years for metal alloy frame, 1 year for batteries and 2 years for the motors
- Lack of much cushioning on back rest. You have to budget extra for the cushion
#2 EBEI Foldable Compact Electric Wheelchair
This is a lightweight basic power wheelchair with total weight of 48 pounds with maximum capacity of 300 pounds. It is powered by 2 x 180 watt motors and runs on two 6 Ah lithium ion batteries connected in series.
- Joystick can be mounted on both arm rest, depending on your convenience
- Comprehensive 2 year warranty scheme
- Easy accessibility to seat from both sides – adjustable arm rests which can be lifted up
- Suspension mechanism may not be best in class, leading to uncomfortable rides on rough terrains
- Comes with only one battery; you will have to budget for an extra back up battery
#3 Travel Buggy Foldable Electric Wheelchair (City Plus)
This electric wheelchair has a good set of comprehensive features. It has an aluminum alloy frame and solid polyurethane tires, with a total weight of about 60 pounds including batteries. The wheelchair is made to carry up to a maximum weight of 400 pounds. A version with larger seating capacity of 21 inches is also available for plus size users. It is powered by 2 noiseless motors and can easily travel on most terrains as well as bumps of up to heights of 1.5 inches.
This electric wheelchair also has a freewheel mode for pushing the chair manually. The device takes about 6 – 8 hours to fully charge its 2 rechargeable lithium ion batteries. The safety standards that Travel Buggy electric wheelchair adheres to in its manufacturing processes are one of the best in the industry. Consequently the product is one of the safest wheelchairs available in the market.
- Good support network for servicing throughout Canada
- Long battery life of up to 15 miles or around 8 hours of constant use
- The wheelchair is 24 inches in total width and you may find it easily going through narrow doorways. Standard doorways are about 30 inches wide
- Good ride quality
- The wheelchair arrives assembled. One just needs to install the joystick to be able to start using it.
- Dual motor system provides for better power and stability
- Seat depth of 17 inches makes enough room for taller users
- Relatively less options in reclining the back rest, which may be uncomfortable for long periods of use
- No remote access through blue-tooth, given product is priced at top end
#4 Folding Electric Powered Wheelchair by WISGING
This dual motor powered (250 watt x 2) wheelchair works on 24 volt with 2 x 6 Ah 12 volt batteries connected in series. The full weight of the 18 inch model wheelchair, including batteries, is 58 pounds and maximum carrying capacity is 300 pounds.
- Joystick may be mounted on both arm rests based on your convenience
- Easy access to seat provided by adjustable arm rests
- Solid poly urethane tires; does not require regular air pressure checks
- Total width of 25 inches – easily goes through most doorways
- Low range of 12 miles on full charge; compared to other models. Ensure that this distance is sufficient for your needs, that is, you would rarely go further than 6 miles from your home
#5 Culver Mobility Electric Power Wheelchair
This wheelchair comes with dual motor technology and uses 2 x 250 W motors to power itself. The warranties for the battery is 6 months, for joystick and motor is 1 year and for metal alloy body is 3 years. The wheelchair has total weight of 64 pounds and total carrying capacity of 365 pounds.
- Model with 19 inch seating capacity has total width of 24 inches, increasing your accessibility through all kinds of narrow doorways
- Remote control access to wheelchair
- Comfortable seat cushion and ride quality
- Easy speed adjustment through joystick. Joystick can be mounted on both arm rests, depending on your needs
- Extra to be budgeted for buying back up battery; comes with only one battery
- Warranty coverage is thinner than some other models
#6 Bangeran Electric Wheelchair (BEAD09)
This electric wheelchair is dual motor powered and comes with a blue-tooth enabled remote control. It has a single 13 Ah (bigger size) lithium ion battery with a maximum range of 13 miles on one full charge at top speed of 4 miles per hour.
The total weight of the wheelchair is 69 pounds with battery. The XL version of the wheelchair has a 19.5 inch wide seat. The product is easy to fold with a one-step action and can stand upright by itself when folded. Maximum weight that can be supported by the wheelchair is 360 pounds.
- Larger rear wheels (13 inches diameter) adding to ride comfort
- Bluetooth remote controller for remote access
- Reasonably priced at the mid two thousand range
- Total width of 24 inches makes it easy for you to drive through doorways with ease
- Shock absorbing mechanism on front wheels need improvement as it ride quality becomes bumpy on uneven surfaces
- Rear wheels are inflatable and requires regular checking for optimal air pressure
Best Electric Wheelchairs in Canada – Conclusion
Finally, the choice of an electric wheelchair is extremely personal, depends on your budget and type of disability, as well as your travel requirements. No two users are alike. However, one thing you should be careful not to compromise on is safety standards and the safety features of your wheelchair. So, take your time and choose your car. And sit back and relax for the comfortable rides up ahead!
If you want to know more about electric wheelchairs, you can read our articles on best power wheelchairs for air travel or best power wheelchairs for outdoor use. We also cover more information about manual wheelchairs. You can read our articles on width of a standard wheelchair and best lightweight transport wheelchairs.