[Manual Wheelchair Reviews]: 11 Best Manual Wheelchair For You

Read this Ultimate Manual Wheelchair Reviews and Find out the Best Manual Wheelchair For You.

After a lot of research and comparisons, we are convinced that the Drive Medical Cruiser III  Light Weight Manual Wheelchair is the Best Manual Wheelchair one can get.

But as there is no one best thing in this gigantic market, thus we have also mentioned some of the other best fully manual wheelchair of different categories be it all-terrain manual wheelchair, lightweight manual wheelchair, off-road manual wheelchair, manual wheelchair for stairs, standing manual wheelchair, or the folding manual wheelchair we got you all.

We have also written a blog on How To Motorize A Manual Wheelchair? which you might also like.

Best Manual Wheelchairs Reviews

 So without further ado, we present you the Best Manual Wheelchairs Reviews.

List Of 11 Best Manual Wheelchairs:

#1. Drive Medical Cruiser III  Light Weight Manual Wheelchair

First on the list is also the best on the list of manual wheelchairs here.

The Cruiser III from the Brand Drive Medical is one of the lightest easy to use wheelchairs one can get.

This wheelchair has a carbon steel frame that allows its user for custom use. One can easily adjust seat depth from 16 to 18 inches with the help of the built-in seat rail extensions and extendable upholstery.

It comes in different types of arm styles and front riggings. The attractive look it gets from the silver vein finish. The sealed wheel bearing present in the front and rear part of the wheelchair ensures long-lasting performance and durability.

The front caster wheels of around 8 inches provide a smooth ride over types of surfaces. The dual axle and removable, flip-back arms attached to the chair make transferring very easy.

It also comes with a detachable flip back arm and a swing-away or elevating footrests. The composite Mag-style wheels allow for a push to lock easy brake.

 All these features at such a low price make this wheelchair one of the best manual wheelchairs on the list.

  • Product Weight is only 41 lbs whereas the Weight carrying capacity is up to 350 lbs.
  • Detachable Full Arms and Swing Away Footrests
  • Sealed wheel bearing
  • Easy Push to lock wheelchair brakes.
  • None

#2. Medline Store Heavy Duty Manual Wheelchair

Next on the list is from the Brand, The Medline K1 Strong Wheelchair is known for its long-lasting usage. The wheelchair is made from a sturdy steel frame with a scratch-resistant finish which makes this wheelchair a built-to-last wheelchair.

This wheelchair has a removable desk arm which is great for dining and office work, and it can also be removed as per the requirement.

The swing-away leg rest makes it very easy to get in and out of the chair. And the Comfortable nylon upholstery is breathable and lighter than vinyl.

This wheelchair is also one of the best folding manual wheelchairs as the chair folds up in only a few seconds for easy storage and can be carried anywhere easily.

This wheelchair has a long-lasting, attractive hammer tone finish as it’s made from durable nylon upholstery. The Premium welds stand up to rigorous use. It also has Mag wheels with smooth-rolling, flat-free tires and the foot-powered movement increases mobility easily with 2” seat-height adjustments.

It has a weight carrying capacity of as high as 300-lb with a product weight of only 38-lbs.  With all these features this wheelchair is one of the best heavy-duty foldable manual wheelchair one can get.

  • Removable desk arms, for dining
  • Swing-away leg rests provide easy access
  • Made with Breathable nylon for extra comfort
  • Adjustable seat back moves up or down for maximum comfort
  • Quick-release wheels make transporting this compact chair fast and easy
  • None

#3. Everest & Jennings Reclining Manual Wheelchair

Third on the list is from one of the most famous Brands Everest & Jennings, they are mainly known for their manual and power wheelchairs worldwide/. They are also known for inventing the folding wheelchair.

This wheelchair has what is called an Advantage Recliner, with a removable higher back and a full-support headrest for additional neck support while reclining.

It can adjust easily to fit any person’s need from 16″, 18″, and 20″ seat widths. And supports up to 300 pounds and the 22″ seat width can easily support up to 450 pounds when in use.

The High back fully reclines from an upright 90-degree angle to a near-flat 170-degree angle easily.

Its Supportive headrest cradles the neck and head and is easily removable when not in use. Rear anti-tippers and an anti-fold spreader bar on the back seat are made as per the standard safety features.

Made with embossed black leatherette upholstery which is very durable, comfortable, and can be easily cleaned, including the chart pockets present on the seatback.

The Elevating legrests keep feet safely off the surface while in use and can be easily adjusted or removed without the need for any extra tools.

Everest & Jennings today has a very big wheelchair product line, including all types of wheelchairs, seat cushions, s well as wheelchair accessories.

This wheelchair is one of the best manual wheelchair for adults or large people.

  • Supports up to 450 pounds
  • Foot supports are cast aluminum
  • Comes with extra-large solid front wheels
  • Elevating leg rests
  • Comes in only black color

#4. Drive Medical Ultralight Manual Wheelchair

The Drive Medical’s Blue Streak Wheelchair is one of the lightest manual wheelchairs one can get. It has a cutting-edge design with advanced elevating padded leg rests and detachable desk arms that flip easily.

The 18″ seat is beautifully crafted for comfort to make independent mobility easy and enjoyable. The material this wheelchair is made of is a sleek blue-powdered coated frame and is finished with durable steel to prevent cracks and chipping make it very durable.

The black cross brace attached to this chair and nylon seat upholstery is sturdy, lightweight, and very easy to wipe or clean. The tires are made of solid rubber material and mounted on composite wheels, it helps ensure a consistently smooth ride on all types of surfaces.

It comes with push-to-lock wheels for safety which is very simple to use. The rear wheel tire type is solid.

This wheelchair is one of the best day-to-day use manual wheelchair ones can get.

  • Detachable desk arms
  • Premium elevated leg rests
  • Durable tires feature push-to-lock functionality
  • The leg rests do not come attached, it comes in a separate box and needs to be attached separately.

#5. Karman S-Ergo 305 Outdoor Manual Wheelchair                      

Next on the list is from the famous Brand -Karman Healthcare Store.

S-Ergo 305 Series

The Karman S-Ergo 305 wheelchair weighs only 29 lbs, which is super light and has a weight carrying capacity of 250-lb and it comes in 16″ or 18″ seat width with a color choice of Red or Silver frame.

Some of the other features it comes with include quick-release rear wheels, height-adjustable flip back adjustable armrest, Ergonomic hand rims, different seat heights capable of 18″, 19″, and 20″.

Its advanced design comes with the brand’s globally patented s-shape seating frame which is amazing. It also comes with concave arm pads, a foldable backrest, a removable padded seat, and comfortable back cushions.

The Ergonomic Armrest-Pad is wide and offers comfortable support for the elbow. And New arm tube design allows for easier movement.

The new ergonomic hand-rims of this wheelchair enhance comfort, flexibility, and mobility, making it very smooth effortless to propel the wheelchair on any type of surface.

Traditional push rims attached to most of the wheelchairs do not have this. This chair can easily adjust the height of the ergonomic armpads using a one-touch release lever system.

This is the best manual wheelchair for outdoor use one can get.

  • Folding Backrest
  • Flip back height adjustable armrest
  • Removable footrest
  • Ergonomic “S” shaped seat
  • Ergonomic Handrims
  • Weight carrying capacity is 250lbs, could have been more.

#6. Medline – User-Friendly Standard Manual Wheelchair

Medline Lightweight and User-Friendly Wheelchair

This smartly designed, a lightweight wheelchair is not just a good-looking chair but it can support people weighing up to 300 pounds.

It’s a great choice for someone who is always on the go and wants an easy access to flip-back desk arms and enhanced comfort of the elevating leg rests of the chair.

The adjustable backrest is built in a way that it moves up and down for customized support. This wheelchair comes in multiple seat widths – 16, 18, or 20 inches.

It is very easy to navigate under tables with the helo of the flip-back, desk-length arm present. This chair is built with the help of breathable nylon upholstery which is very soft and comfortable, on top of that the premium welds ensure reliability and durability.

The smooth-rolling Mag wheels attached to this chair and the low-maintenance flat-free tires are a perfect combination.

  • Removable, flip back desk arm
  • Elevating leg rest
  • Made with nylon upholstery
  • Fully adjustable seat back and arms
  • None

#7. Drive Medical Cruiser III Folding Manual Wheelchair

Another one on the list from the brand Drive Medical, it has some differences from the other cruiser III mentioned above in the list.

This wheelchair has a carbon steel frame that allows for custom inserts and is Built-in seat rail extensions and extendable upholstery can easily adjust its seat depth from 16 to 18 inches as per the user’s instructions.

The Legrest of this wheelchair is sold separately and the overall Product Width is 11″. The Primary Product Color is Black and the primary Product Material used in this chair is Steel.

It comes with an actual Product Weight of 4.5 lbs and the overall Product Height of 4″, whereas the overall Product Length is 16″. The basic assembly of the product is required, whereas no production Installation is Required.

  • Product weight carrying capacity is 300 lbs
  • Comes with easy Push-To-Lock Brakes
  • Easily Foldable for storage and Transfer
  • Dual axle
  • Removable, flip back arms
  • Comes in only Black color

#8. Invacare Tracer IV Best Manual Wheelchair for Adults and Old People

Next on this list is from the famous Brand Invacare.

The Tracer IV is one of the best wheelchairs for adults as it has all the necessary features like superior durability, Dual axle position which allows variation of seat-to-floor heights, Reinforced frame which includes gusseted sides, caster journals, and dual cross braces, with the corded urethane rear tires weighing 350 lb. and pneumatic flat-free tires 450 lb.

On top of that this wheelchair is very low-maintenance with dual-sealed precision bearings and can easily roll on any type of surface.

This wheelchair is mainly designed for individuals who like to be active and need the strength of a reinforced heavy-duty frame easily. This wheelchair is one of the strongest manual wheelchairs in the market and is very long-lasting.

In addition, the super-durable wheelchair’s seat and back are reinforced with inner liners and have 8″ Semi-pneumatic, rear wheels are 24″ composite pneumatic wheels with flat-free inserts.

You may think what makes this wheelchair so strong, is the reinforced frame which includes gusseted sides and 14 gauge steel cross braces, which is designed for users who need the strength to operate a  heavy-duty chair.

Also, the dual embossed black vinyl with heavy-duty inner liners keeps the seat and back from tearing and stretching.

As this is one of the strongest manual wheelchairs it can carry an individual with a weight capacity of 450 lbs.

  • Heavy-duty inner liners
  • Dual-sealed precision bearings
  • The weight carrying capacity of 450lbs
  • Leg rests and Footrests do not come with the package.

#9. Everest & Jennings Traveler L4 Wheelchair Ultra Lightweight Manual Wheelchair

Another one is from the Everest and Jennings Wheelchair Manual. The Traveler L4 is the best lightest manual wheelchair one can get, with a weight of only 32 pounds and a capacity of up to 250 pounds.

It comes in mainly two sizes (18″ or 20″)  though its premium adjustable for a custom fit, the seatback comes in two sizes (16. 5″ or 18. 5″) and can be raised or lowered to two positions as per the requirement of the user. Whereas the seat comes in three widths (16″, 18″, or 20″)

The material used to build this wheelchair is the Black nylon upholstery which is very durable and comfortable and has a chart pocket on the seatback like other E & J’s wheelchairs.

The Carbon steel frame in the chair provides strength and hammertone paint provides a long-lasting and durable finish.

Also, the Elevating leg rests help its user to keep the feet safe, off the ground while on the move, and are easily adjusted or removed without any tools.

  • Very lightweight
  • Weighing less than 32 pounds
  • Adjustable-height seat
  • Flip-back or adjustable-height padded arms
  • The brake Mechanism is not that strong

#10. Invacare Tracer SX5 Wheelchair for Adults

Next on the list is this SX5 from the Brand Invacare, this manual chair has a lot to offer like it has a lightweight frame, weighing less than 36 lbs, making this wheelchair one of the best chair for a manual wheelchair lift, perfect for rental and for long term as well as short-term use.

It has multiple sectional backs, seat widths, arm styles, and seat-to-floor heights by fully utilizing the dual axle position of the frame base.

The SX5 with a seat width of 20″ and 22″ includes a semi-pneumatic caster to accommodate a weight capacity of as high as 300 lbs.

With the combination of the technology and the design of Invacare, the Invacare 9000 series wheelchairs make it possible for its user to interchange components with the Tracer SX5 wheelchair very easily without the need for any additional pieces of equipment.

The SX5 also has a Recliner Manual Wheelchair that offers the durability of a lightweight manual wheelchair with the added versatility and comfort of a full reclining wheelchair.

The Tracer SX5 Recliner wheelchair has a recline range from 90˚ to 180˚.

As per the armrest is concerned the desk length arms allow its user to sit comfortably at a table or desk while still offering comfortable arm support. And the full-length arms offer more arm support but are not as versatile.

The Front Rigging T94 legrests or footrests offer comfortable leg support to its user. The T94 leg rests offer calf support and can elevate the legs easily while the T93 is built to support the feet only.

  • Interchange components with any wheelchair of the series Tracer SX5.
  • Made with a strong carbon steel frame
  • Seat and back made with heavy-duty inner liner
  • 300 lbs weight capacity
  • Easily Foldable
  • Can be used for rental, short-term, or long-term use
  • None

#11. Drive Medical Bariatric Manual wheelchair

Last on the list is one of the best transport wheelchairs mainly used as a pediatric manual wheelchair.

This 22 inches Bariatric Transport Chair with 12 inches Rear Wheels which are said to be flat-free, can support users with a weight of up to 450 pounds. The push bar attached to his wheelchair is made with a padded foam grip and is very easy to push from behind when used as a wheelchair carrier or for lift.

The back folds down very easily for convenient and easy storage and transfer with an easily accessible lever on the chair’s back. This transport chair comes with swing-away footrests and fixed, padded, full-length desk arms for additional comfort to its user.

It is made with heavy-duty, nylon reinforced upholstery and has two carry handles that can be used to fold, store and transfer the wheelchair. It also comes with a lever and companion-activated wheelchair locks, for users’ safety while being operated.

It can also be used for daily use for large people as the bariatric transport chair provides extra support.

As this is one of the widely used and best manual wheelchair for lifts and transport it comes with a set of seat belts attached to it.

  • Comes with a seat belt
  • Comes with swing-away footrests and anti-tippers
  • Padded armrests provide additional comfort
  • Product Weight Capacity up to 450 lbs
  • Great for daily use
  • Best for kids as well as adults
  • None

How To Choose The Best Manual Wheelchair?

4 points to help you choose the best manual wheelchair as per your requirement:

Weight Factor– Heavier weight wheelchairs are great for at-home use. Lighter-weight chairs are more transport-friendly, and easier to fold up as well as can be easily lifted into a car and taken on the go.

Legrest and Footrests– A wheelchair with Swing away foot and leg rest make it easy to get in and out of the wheelchair, whereas wheelchairs with Elevating leg rests let the user raise and extend the leg position to help prevent swelling, relieve pressure, and enhance comfort.

Material uses– One of the most comfortable and supportive wheelchairs is made with nylon upholstery as they are very light in weight and more breathable than the chairs made from vinyl.  Whereas Vinyle upholstery-made wheelchairs are very easy to clean as they can be wiped clean with little effort and are durable too.

Fitting–  To find your perfect size, match the width of the seat to the weight and general size. The best size is a 16-inch seat for a smaller adult or kids, the 18-inch seat for an average-size adult (most widely used size), and 20-inch + larger options for a very larger adult.

Who Should Buy A Manual Wheelchair?

best manual wheelchair

If you are someone who has walked but not comfortably and needs to sit down from time to time while walking then a manual wheelchair would be a good option for you.

Wheelchairs are not only made of someone with disabilities, as we age we need assistance with our work and it includes movement from one place to another, with the help of a manual wheelchair you can get your freedoms back, increase your mobility and maximize your comfort.

As you know manual wheelchairs are also of two types self-propelled manual wheelchairs and electric manual wheelchairs, with the help of a self-propelled one you require a decent amount of upper body strength to operate the chair forward and backward, though you can also have an assistant with you at all time, which a lot of people have nowadays.

Most of the manual wheelchairs are portable. If it’s not an electric or a power wheelchair, then it will be very lightweight for you to operate.

If you have read our article Folding Wheelchair v/s Rigid Wheelchair, here we have clearly written about what are the different materials used in a wheelchair, and the types of frames used in it.

You will find that most of the manual wheelchairs are either made with aluminum, titanium, or carbon fiber making them lightweight. Manual wheelchairs also have frames that fold easily making them easier to store and transport.

Features to look for to get the Best Manual Wheelchair

best outdoor manual wheelchair

#1. Manual vs Electric

This is the most first and the most important thing you need to decide. Do you need a manual wheelchair or an electric one? This you can decide by your capability of operating the wheelchair and how long can you operate it without the help of assistance.

When it comes to the manual wheelchairs, they mainly have large wheels which help stabilize the chair when traveling through surfaces that are not smooth also in the back of the wheelchair there will be a bar or a handle which the assistant can hold to operate the chair from the back.

Whereas the electric wheelchairs use a motor to propel the chair, with the help of a joystick which the user can easily operate and move in any direction. They are generally more expensive because of all the features they provide.

To help you choose if you are someone who can walk sometimes and will need some assistance from time to time then go for a manual wheelchair, whereas if you are having a lot of difficulty with the movement and you are someone who needs to move around more often then an electric wheelchair might be the best fit for you.

#2. Wheelchair Size and Weight

This is one of the important factors that a wheelchair buyer must look into as the size and the weight of the wheelchair will determine how easily the wheelchair will be transported and stored.

Though most of the wheelchairs are foldable nowadays which helps with the storage part, choosing the right weight as per the user’s capabilities is very important. And it becomes even more important when the wheelchair is a manual one, as the heavier the wheelchair the more effort the user or its assistance will have to put to operate the wheelchair.

It is advisable to choose a wheelchair made from materials like aluminum or carbon steel, as they are very lightweight and easy to handle.

Also make sure the additional parts of the wheelchair that are not always in use can be removed, like the leg raise this makes the wheelchair even lighter and easy to transfer and store.

#3. Strength of the user

Every individual knows his/her strength and ability they can be comfortable with, Most of the manual wheelchairs will have to be operated by you and you will have to push your own weight with it.

If you don’t have the strength to move your own weight, then consider an electric or a power wheelchair, as they are very easy to operate and don’t need any strength to control it. They can be a little costlier but will completely change your lifestyle and health with the comfort it provides.

Also, the surface on which the wheelchair is used plays an important role here, as plane surfaces like in your home, require less effort and strength to control the wheelchair whereas if you plan to use the wheelchair outdoor where the surfaces can be uneven sometimes, you may need a totally different type of wheelchair for that.

We have written a separate blog post on wheelchairs for travel, which might help you.

#4. Body Type of the User

The user’s body type is also an important factor to consider in choosing the best wheelchair.

The Shape, Weight, Height of the user should be checked and compared with the capacity of the wheelchair to get the perfect match.

In simple terms, you should consider your physical build and compare it with the wheelchairs specifications to get the right fit for you.

Also, consult with your doctor or physiotherapist if you are confused with the right kind of wheelchair you should choose.

#5. Users Needs and Requirements

Everyone has different needs with a wheelchair.

A disabled person may need a more equipped wheelchair like a power assist manual wheelchair, with a lot of features in it, whereas an old person who just needs a wheelchair for outdoor use may be okay with a simple manual wheelchair with handrail projections.

If you are confused with the best types of wheelchair for you, don’t hesitate to call a medical professional to know the specifics you require in a wheelchair as per your condition.

#6. User’s Lifestyle

One needs to also consider his/her lifestyle and what they do in a usual day when purchasing the right kind of wheelchair.

If you are someone who usually goes to work and then like to travel a little outdoor, then a manual wheelchair with a power add-on may be a good choice for you as it will also help you move along rough surfaces with the help of a powerful motor.                             

And if you are someone who likes to be home most of the time and just needs a device to help you move from one place to other from time to time then a manual wheelchair with friction surface handrails should be the best choice for you.

#7. Taste and Preferences

It ultimately comes down to the user’s taste and preferences, there are very few bad wheelchairs out there in the market in todays time, you really don’t have to worry about the quality of wheelchairs present in this list.

Ultimately you have to decide which type of wheelchair best suits you.

The color of the wheelchair is also a factor in the taste and preferences, keep all these in mind and get the wheelchair you will be most comfortable with. You can also get the help of your close ones to check all the necessary boxes related to a wheelchair.

Also once you finalize some of the top quality wheelchairs for you that meets all your requirement, read the reviews that the wheelchair has got on amazon, to truly know about the wheelchair.

#8. Easy Transport and Storage

Most of the wheelchairs in the market nowadays provide compact designs or fast and easy folding features that help with the transport and storage of the wheelchair. Having a folding wheelchair is a great advantage and can be really helpful at times.

#9. Usage Time

Every wheelchair has its own advantages and disadvantages when it comes to usage of the wheelchair.

A Manual wheelchair can be used nonstop as it requires no battery to work but operating it for a longer period of time is very difficult as one also has to manually control the wheelchair, they are best for short-term use.

Whereas electric wheelchair or a power chair can be operated nonstop for like 7-8hrs but will need to charge from time to time best for travel or long term use

#10. Support Levels

A wheelchair with many safety features is an added advantage. Having a high back wheelchair with safety belts and headrests can be really comfortable if you have a problem with your upper body strength and cannot easily control the wheelchair properly.

A lightweight ergonomic wheelchair is something one should consider in this case as they have a lot of safety and comfort features that help its user in many possible ways.

#11. Fit

All the manual wheelchairs nowadays are designed for every body type from pediatric to bariatric. Before looking at any other feature in a wheelchair, first look at the size and diameter of the wheelchair and how does it match your fit.

A matching  Seat width, back height, seat depth, seat height, armrest height, a matching footrest height should help your buy the best fitting wheelchair for you.

Here’s a Helpful Video on How to fold and transport a manual wheelchair which you might like.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. How Heavy is a Manual Wheelchair?

A normal manual wheelchair weighs anywhere between 20 lbs. and 100lbs depending on the features it provides and the material used in the wheelchair.

Q2. How Much Does a Manual Wheelchair Cost?

A manual wheelchair can cost anywhere between $150 up to $4000, depending on the different features it provides and the comfort it provides to its user.

Q3. What Type of Wheelchair is the Easiest to Push or Operate?

Transport wheelchairs are the easiest to operate wheelchair there is. They are easy to operate as they come with significant small wheels, which are very lightweight and very easy for the caregiver to push.

Q4. What is a Bariatric Wheelchair?

A bariatric wheelchair comes into the category of heavy-duty wheelchairs, they are wider than a normal manual wheelchair which helps people of all sizes. They are designed in a way that can support the extra weight, they can easily carry people weighing over 250 pounds.

Q5. How To get a Free wheelchair?

There are a lot of government programs that help people in need to get a free wheelchair also there are Wheelchair charities in a lot of states that also provide free wheelchair services to the people in need.

Q6. How to Stop a Manual Wheelchair from going down a Ramp?

If the ramp is not steep enough then good quality brakes will definitely help stop the wheelchair from going down the ramp. Do make sure the user is properly guarded with the safety belts before helping the wheelchair do down the ramp.

The Bottom Line

We hope that with the help of this Ultimate Review on Manual Wheelchairs and the list of Best Manual Wheelchair, we have helped you understand all you need to know about a Manual wheelchair.

Feel free to let us know how did you like our Manual wheelchairs buying guide.