If you recently started using a power wheelchair, it will take some time to become familiar with your new mobility solution. Fortunately, operating these devices is generally simple and straightforward. There are also a few do’s and don’ts to keep in mind so you stay safe and help protect your chair.
Maneuver your power chair safely.
It may take some time to figure out what your chair is and isn’t capable of in terms of getting around, but always err on the side of caution when maneuvering it. Avoid any steep inclines to prevent tipping, and steer clear of narrow passages or uneven terrain where you could get stuck. Consult your owner’s manual for any additional recommendations for your specific model.
Turn your chair off when not in use.
Keeping your power chair off when you’re not using it will help preserve the battery, ensuring you have enough power for an entire day’s worth of use. This step is also important for safety reasons. Turning your chair off and removing any startup keys before you get out of it reduces the risk of falling and being injured.
Let the battery run low.
Many manufacturers recommend maintaining a full battery for optimal chair performance. Batteries work best when you recharge them after they reach 50%, but you can still use them until they reach 20%. However, continuously letting the charge get this low can shorten the battery’s life span. Set a recurring alarm on your phone so you remember to charge the battery at the same time every day, and only use the charger that came with the unit.
Overlook preventive maintenance.
As with any machine, your power wheelchair will last the longest and operate its best when you care for it regularly. In addition to addressing any issues through timely repairs as needed, you should also follow a preventive maintenance schedule.
Wipe down the seat each night before you go to bed; if you use a removable cloth cover, add it to a regular load of laundry. Clean the wheels and frame once a week and check these areas for any signs of wear. Inspect the chair each month for loose nuts and screws at least once a month. At this time, you should also make sure the wheels are properly aligned.
If you’re seeking a power wheelchair in Honolulu, HI, turn to Dauterman Healthcare & Mobility. We have a large showroom where you can compare quality mobility aids and medical supplies, along with financing options to fit a broad range of budgets. Explore our devices online now, or call (808) 591-8860 to ask about a specific product.