3 Wheels or 4?
This is your first decision when you look for a scooter.
There are 4 main considerations: Stability, Manoeuvrability, Ease of Steering and Comfort.
How stable are scooters? Some people worry about stability but scooters are hard to tip over. 4-wheelers are more stable, but with a careful driver there should be no stability issues with 3-wheelers. The vast majority of 3-wheel owners never tip them over. Just as car drivers have a feel for where they can take their car, scooter drivers soon get a feel for where they can take their scooter safely, whether it is 3 or 4 wheel.
Three-wheelers are more manoeuvrable than 4-wheelers because they have a much smaller turning circle. 4-wheelers are generally not suitable for indoor use (home, shops etc) except for the very small ones.
3. EASE OF STEERING
3-wheelers are a little easier to steer because there is only one wheel to turn.
This is a very important consideration. On a 4-wheeler the front mudguard extends right across the scooter. On 3-wheelers the floor extends forward each side of the steering column so you can stretch your legs forward.
Here’s a simple test to see how much leg-room you’ll need: Sitting on a 3-wheeler is like sitting in the front seat of a car. Sitting on a 4-wheeler is like sitting in the back seat. If you can’t travel in the back seat of a car because your legs are too cramped up, you will probably need to consider a 3-wheel scooter.
Choosing a Scooter
3 OR 4 WHEEL?
This is your first decision, and it’s a major one. See our detailed “3 or 4 Wheel?” section in the previous list.
YOUR WEIGHT AND HEIGHT?
Generally, larger people need larger scooters because they have more room and larger motors. Larger motors are more powerful for hill climbing. Taller people often prefer 3 wheelers because they have much more leg room. All scooters have a specified Maximum Weight Capacity which cannot be exceeded without voiding the warranty, but we have scooters rated up to over 200kg (31stone)!
HOW FAR WILL YOU WANT TO GO?
The further you’ll want to go, the larger the batteries you’ll need. Some scooters can take large batteries, but small ones can only take small batteries. So basically, the bigger the scooter, the further it will go on a charge.
HOW HILLY IS YOUR AREA?
The steeper the hills in your area, the larger the motor you’ll need because power depends on motor size (not battery size). Small scooters have small motors and large scooters have large motors. So larger scooters are better on steep hills.
HOW BUMPY ARE THE FOOTPATHS AND ROADS IN YOUR AREA?
If your footpaths and roads are fairly bumpy then you should have a scooter with suspension, and pneumatic (pump-up) tyres. Solid tyres have the advantage of being puncture proof, but they can give an uncomfortable ride on rough surfaces.
HOW FAST (OR SLOW) WILL YOU WANT TO GO?
Smaller scooters are generally slower than Medium and Larger scooters.
WILL YOU CARRY IT IN A CAR?
Most small and medium scooters can be easily dismantled and placed in the boot of most cars. Most small and medium scooters will fit into station wagons and some hatchbacks without dismantling, except that the seat usually has to be removed. Many people carry a ramp to load their scooter into a station wagon or hatchback. All scooters will fit into vans without removing the seat provided any van seats don’t get in the way. Scooters & Mobility offers a scooter lifter that will lift smaller scooters into a boot, station wagon or van.
WHERE WILL YOU BE KEEPING IT?
It’s best to keep your scooter inside or in a garage to keep it away from the weather. If you can’t do this, it’s OK to keep it in a carport or other sheltered area, but you should cover it with an all-weather scooter cover.
DO YOU HAVE A MEDICAL PROBLEM?
If you can’t sit for long with your legs bent (like in the back seat of a car), you’ll need a 3-wheeler. If you have back problems, you may need one with very soft suspension. If only one hand works, we will modify the drive controls to suit your problem. If you need to take oxygen with you we can fit an oxy-bottle carrier. No matter what your medical problem we can usually set up a scooter for you.
COST AND PEACE OF MIND
Scooters & Mobility stock many scooters from budget to top-of-the-range and state-of-art and you are unlikely to find better prices than ours. We stock only leading brands and quality products that will be of great benefit to you not only for today, but for many tomorrows as well.
At Scooters & Mobility we don’t just have customers we have friends for life.