Home / ILS Blog / The Independent Living Specialists Wheelchair Buying Guide

For a person who is experiencing limited mobility, a wheelchair can be a valuable investment to get your freedom to go about your day. There are many types of wheelchairs available to you in the market, however at Independent Living Specialists we believe in offering our customers only the very best with options and models based on their lifestyle, budget and preferences. With a great range of manual wheelchairs available for purchase and hire, at ILS you are assured of variety and being able to find a mobility solution that will be what you are looking for. With the different types of wheelchairs options available to you, we are here to help advise you in making a buying decision based on the options and functionalities available to you.

When looking to buy or even hire a wheelchair; the type and use, the budget and even the weight capacity are factors you need to put into consideration. When browsing the ILS website, you will come across the “Shop Wheelchairs” section that allows you to browse the various options and models for sale (some are also available for hire). One of the first things you should look at doing is knowing how much you are willing to spend on the wheelchair purchase. By setting a budget, you are setting a price limit. It’s also a good idea to also think about the features you want to have in your wheelchair that are absolutely necessary to have.

By setting these specifications, you are able to define the scope of the features you are after and narrow down your options when shopping for wheelchairs. These priority or core necessary features should be documented so you are able to refer back to them.

Essentially, one of the things you should understand is that there are two types of wheelchairs available in the mobility solutions market; transit wheelchairs and self-propelled wheelchairs. The decision you make is also reliant on how you plan on using the wheelchair and you should ask yourself a few questions that will make it easier to decide on whether you need a transit or self-propelled wheelchair. These include the likes of the following;

  1. a) Will you be using the wheelchair independently (on your own) or will you require assistance?
  2. b) Will you be using the wheelchair to go out alone often?
  3. c) Do you possess the upper body/arm strength to self-propel the wheelchair to get places?
  4. d) How often do you plan on using the wheelchair?
  5. e) Will you need both features of both self-propel/transit wheelchairs?

The objective of answering the following questions is to determine whether you will be needing a Transit or Self-Propelled Wheelchair.

Transit Wheelchair

Independent Living Specialists Transit Wheelchairs

A transit wheelchair, also known as a transport wheelchair, is one that requires another person to push and guide the wheelchair to its route/destination. The rear wheels are often either the same size or slightly larger than the front wheels. A person sitting in the wheelchair cannot use it without the assistance of another.

Self-Propelled Wheelchair

Independent Living Specialists Self Propelled Wheelchairs

A self-propelled wheelchair comes with big rear wheels so that the person sitting in the wheelchair is able to reach and makeover. They must possess enough upper body/arm strength to be able to propel the wheelchair to its travel course.

Based on the above, you will be able to understand which of these will suit you best. After which you can look into other features such as will they require a headrest or a foot rest. Often a headrest or foot rest are good choices when sitting in a wheelchair for long periods of time. In addition, the dimensions of the wheelchair will also be a factor to make sure you are comfortable. Knowing the dimensions will also help in understanding how much space is required for storage.

There are many more factors when considering buying a wheelchair (or even hiring one),speak to our friendly customer service team by dialling 1300 008 267,

Buying Guide Wheelchairs
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