If you’ve just begun shopping for a wheelchair, you might wonder about the difference between a standard wheelchair and a transport chair. They look similar, and at first glance, you might be inclined to use the smaller and less-expensive transport chair. But before you make your decision, it’s important to consider how you plan to use the chair and what you need it to do.
A transport chair is often ideal for those who need mobility assistance only temporarily or just some of the time. You’ve probably seen these chairs at the airport, transporting passengers who have difficulty walking long distances. Typically, transport chairs:
- Have narrow frames, which allow them to pass easily through most doors, bathroom stalls and even airplane aisles. If you use a transport chair, you might not have to retrofit the doors in your home for accessibility.
- Are designed to be extremely lightweight and easy to store, which makes them ideal for short outings.
- Have solid rubber tires that require minimal maintenance.
The big disadvantage of transport chairs is that you can’t propel them yourself.
A standard wheelchair is generally a better choice if you need mobility assistance most of the time, or you will be in the chair for a prolonged period. You can propel the chair yourself, without any assistance. This helps to ensure your freedom to tend to your daily activities without requiring the help of anyone else.
Most manual chairs are designed for prolonged use, with inflatable or pneumatic tires. Therefore, they offer a smoother, more gentle ride. Many options are available, as well, allowing you to have a chair that’s more or less customized to your specific needs. Your health-care providers and vendor will provide assistance in this important process of finding the chair that will serve you right for the length of time that you need it.
At Power and Mobility Lifts, we specialize in the sale and service of all types of mobility equipment. Our highly trained technicians are available for in-home consultations and repairs in Phoenix and throughout the state of Arizona. Contact us, and we’ll be happy to answer all of your questions.