There are several things to consider before buying a mobility scooter. For example, its weight capacity, turning radius, ground clearance, and also battery capacity.
Most times, we care more about how long mobility scooter batteries last, and this is why this article was written to answer the question and also lead you to the best in the market. Another thing to consider before getting a mobility scooter is what you will be using it for.
Some are designed for indoor use, while some are for outdoor use. Statistics generally shows that indoor scooters have a lower battery range than outdoor ones. A mobility scooter is an electric vehicle though there are some made otherwise but less common. Several factors determine how long any battery will last. Therefore, we will discuss every detail of these factors.
There are different kinds of scooter battery models. Some allow you to charge the battery directly, while others may require you to remove the battery to charge. You should go for the more comfortable battery package for you and the one that meets your budget.
You must understand that the way the battery works in scooters is quite different from how it works in cars. In cars or other gasoline vehicles, the function of the battery is to start the car, and it keeps running on fuel. In the case of scooters, its batteries power it all through. The batteries in scooters are expected to give a constant supply of power to keep the scooter running unlike in most cars where they run on fuel.
Mobility scooters have three different kinds of batteries, and each of these batteries has its peculiarities. They have their strengths and their weaknesses. Therefore, your choice of mobility scooter or battery replacement should mirror all their pros and cons.
This kind of battery is made from lead-acid. Lead-acid is a very corrosive chemical that helps in the transfer of electrons. This property makes it suitable for making batteries. Among other batteries, Lead-acid batteries are the cheapest. They are light and also last longer.
The only problem with this kind of battery is that they need a lot of maintenance. Since it is a mixture of electrolyte and water, most of its maintenance is about refilling. You must know that they spill, and if not careful, it can burn you. You must be careful when handling this kind of batteries
Gel cell is an upgrade of Lead-acid cell batteries. Most mobility scooters run on this kind of battery because it does not spill. The component of most gel batteries is almost the same as lead-acid or other wet batteries but with the addition of jelling agents (e.g., gel). The work of the gel is to make the electrolyte spill-proof.
This means it hardens the electrolyte and prevents spilling. At first, when gel batteries were introduced to the industry, their cost was about 400% higher than their corresponding wet batteries.
Therefore, you should know that gel mobility scooter batteries are more expensive than lead-acid batteries, but they require no maintenance after purchase. Moreover, they have a low self-discharge rate, and importantly, they are approved to be taken on planes. This secures your old one’s independence even when traveling.
Often, people mistake Gel batteries with AGM batteries. Though they are both under Sealed Lead-Acid Batteries, they are different from each other. AGM batteries use a special kind of glass mat comprising of thin glass fibers. These fibers do the work of Gel in Gel batteries.
The work of the glass fibers is to absorb the electrolytes between the battery plates. They are modern technology battery and just like Gel batteries, they do not spill nor require any special maintenance. They have shock resistance, and you can bring them on planes.
Comparably, AGM batteries are cheaper than Gel batteries with a longer life span and are suitable for vehicles requiring a high amount of energy. The charging of AGM batteries is also top-notch and beats Gel or Lead-acid. These and more make it the best choice of battery for your mobility scooters.
Just like any other chargeable device or electronics, charging your mobility scooter is not anything special, which means it is something you already can do. However, here we will discuss some of the best practices you should follow when charging and using your scooter.
You must understand that all batteries have a life span which means if a battery has already lost its charge, these procedures can never get it to charge. However, if you follow this process hands-on, you will maintain your battery for a long time and enjoy its usage.
Before charging your mobility scooter, make sure it is turned off. There are different ways each manufacturer designed the machine, but for most, you will either have to turn it off using a key, a switch, or a button. When you have done this, you are ready to charge safely
The next step is to connect your charger. Different models of mobility scooters have varying ports and are located at different parts of the machine. However, most are located around the knee height for medium and large scooters but at the feet or back for a small-sized scooter.
Once you have plugged your charger into the charging port of your mobility scooter, the next thing is to plug it into your socket or put it on if already plugged in. If you follow the whole process above, your battery should start charging. Make sure you do not try to on the mobility scooter while charging. This is to make it last longer.
One of the best practices you should have is to charge your mobility scooter overnight, even if you just used it for short rides. Also, if you are not using it for an extended period, make sure you charge it once every week to maintain its performance. One good news is that if you are using a modern charger, you cannot overcharge it. It will only charge when needed.
Storage of batteries of mobility scooters is very essential for them to last long. This storage can be more important if you are not actively using your mobility scooter. When it is such a case, ensure you charge it following the process above once every week. Also, confirm your batteries are fully charged before storage.
Moreover, you should avoid storing your batteries in extreme hot or cold conditions. It gradually reduces the capacity of your battery. If you encounter any problem with your scooter charging or storage, it is advisable to reach out to a professionally trained wheelchair or mobility scooter repairer.
One of the major factors you will consider when buying a mobility scooter is the range of the battery on a full charge. We understand this, and that is why we have decided to explain the range of scooters based on their size. It is also vital you know that your scooter’s range might depend on other factors like your weight, how often you use it, how heavy your shopping is, and the age of the battery itself.
These are portable mobility scooters, and they can last for up to 10 miles depending on the usage. This kind of scooter is not meant for rugged or high hills. They are specifically designed for flat surfaces. They have a compact size which makes it easy for you to maneuver your way easily. An example is the Medical Scout Compact Travel Power Scooter. Though it has 4 wheels, it is portable and can be easily disassembled.
It does not go for more than 4mph. They are designed for environmental distances. You should not take them for distances more than 3 miles to avoid being stranded. Ensure you are in constant check of the battery level and always put it off when not in use.
Because of their large size, they have bigger batteries than small boot mobility scooters and therefore longer range. On a full charge, a mid-range mobility scooter can move up to a distance between 15 and 25 miles. This is because of the increased battery power it possesses. A good example is the 18 AH Battery Pack for Drive Medical Scout Scooters with a range up to 15 miles and also charges very fast.
This kind of scooter is suitable for people who want to go long-distance or those that desire to use their scooter for an extended period. If you have limited access to transport around your area, it can be a good choice for you. The increased independence it affords people makes it popular among old people.
From the name, you can use this kind of scooter for long-range driving from neighborhoods to neighborhoods. Moreover, it enables you to travel faster than any other mobility scooter with its speed ranging from 6 to 8 mph. It can travel for up to 35 miles range. These heavy-duty machines afford you to travel a great distance on a single charge.
A quality mobility scooter should have at least an eighteen-month life span. This is why manufacturers offer a battery warranty of 12-months or 18-months. In reality, your battery can last longer depending on how you use your mobility scooter. Moreover, the question “How long do mobility scooter batteries last” does not have a straight answer.
The battery lifespan depends on factors like frequency of use, frequency of acceleration because it drains batteries quicker, weight of load and driver, kind of ground, etc. These factors affect the battery lifespan in ways that you cannot imagine. Storage is also one thing you should pay attention to.
Like we discussed above, most batteries can last up to 18 months or even as high as 2 to 3 years. In reality, a lot depends on you to make sure your battery lasts as long as possible. Here are some tips you can follow to make your battery last long:
Mobile scooters were made for old people especially to give them some sense of freedom. When you want to get a scooter for your old ones, you should consider everything discussed in this article. For example, the battery is a major factor. Moreover, you should focus on the aspect of your mobile scooter care you control. Moreover, make sure comfort is part of your consideration before getting a scooter.