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Electric wheelchairs are heavier compared to regular wheelchairs because if the added wright of batteries, motors and sturdier frames. The degree of complexity in electric powered wheelchairs also ranges greatly, from simply employing regular batteries along with a joy stick controller, all the way up to utilizing microprocessor operated gyroscopic circuitry which allows the chair to go up on 2 wheels!
The price also varies with the complexity and they can range from $3,000 – $30,000. The newest wheelchairs can go upstairs, curbs, go through gravel and even elevate to reach things on a higher level.
For this type of chair you are looking at a starting price of around $21,000. The average electric wheelchair will cost around $12,000.
Always buy your electric wheelchair from a trusted and licenced supplier. That way you will get full service if your electric chair needs repairs. If going the second hand route, be aware of faulty battery packs, cracked frames or bad motors.
Electric wheelchairs are propelled by one of 3 basic methods:
Back Wheel Driven Electric Wheelchairs
This kind is the most popular for electric wheelchairs. Although this type is fast, it turning ability is poor compared to the other types of electric wheelchairs.
Mid Wheel Driven Electric Wheelchairs
This type has the best turning ability of all the electric wheelchairs. It can be a bit unstable when moving off or stopping; they are not a good choice for uneven terrain.
Front Wheel Driven Electric Wheelchairs
While slower than the back wheel driven wheelchairs, they provide good turning ability.
Kinds Of Batteries For Electric Wheelchairs
Batteries also come in 3 varieties for electric wheelchairs. They come in Wet, Gel and the latest Absorbed Glass Mat (AMG) varieties.
Energy is generated by a chemical reaction between the lead and sulphuric acid. They do require some maintenance because they have to be topped up with distilled water, but they are lighter compared to Gel and AGM batteries. Wet batteries can leak sometimes, so you have to keep this in mind if travelling on a plane.
Less susceptible to overcharging.
Impressive functionality when properly maintained.
Lighter per Ah versus many Gel or AGM’s.
Needs routine maintenance.
Battery acid solution might seep out, resulting in corrosion and destruction to chair and electrical wiring.
Unauthorized for airline trip.
Increased rate of self-discharge if idle (6-7% monthly).
When choosing a new battery supply, research prices. Purchasing a new battery supply from a wheelchair vendor or medical retailer costs more compared to an electrical retailer. Don’t be misled by false reports that the batteries can only be brought from wheelchair vendors.
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