Measure for Wheelchair
How to take simple wheelchair measurements.
How to Measure For Wheelchair
Overall widths and other dimensions vary across several categories of wheelchairs. Anyone purchasing a wheelchair should be concerned with some of the basic dimensions such as overall width and the seat size. You should begin by scouting out the lay-of-the-land. Do this by identifying the smallest and narrowest doorways, passage ways, elevators, or whatever you can think of or visualize that will be part of your day. Around the home it's usually a bathroom door or narrow hallway that limits access. Heavier users with wider chairs may see obstacles at every turn.
For most chairs, use these formulas to determine the overall width of a wheelchair:
Standard wheelchair with 18" wide seat would be: 18" seat width + 8" = 26" overall width).
More detailed information on selecting frame style, back style, front rigging and upholstery see Wheelchair Option Descriptions.
Consult with each product's specifications page to get exact dimensions.
How to measure for correct wheelchair size:
Who needs to measure?
Measuring for Transport Wheelchair, standard wheelchairs and most lightweight wheelchairs need only the seat width & depth. In some cases, for those patients wanting to propel the chair with their feet, the seat-to-floor height.
Helping you configure:
Write this down:
How to buy a wheelchair:
Narrow Selection to Type of Chair.
Choose your wheelchair based on patient and caregiver needs. If you know you will always push the patient you may only require a lightweight Transport. Standard wheelchairs with larger rear wheels will be required for the patient to propel themselves. Ultra-lightweight, Sports, Reclining and tilt-in-space wheelchairs can be configured on our website.
Configure the Chair.
Use this form to record your measurements:Note about "Overall Wheelchair Width": For most folding standard weight and lightweight wheelchairs the overall width of the chair (outside wheel to outside wheel) is determined by adding 8" to the seat width. Transport chairs generally add 0-3" to seat width, depending on wheelchair model. << Click here to print this seat chart >>
Wheelchair Size:Use this seating chart to determine correct chair size. If measuring for a standard wheelchair you will simply need to know the users seat width and depth. When measuring for a Custom or Rehab wheelchair, seat width, seat depth, back height, and seat-to-floor height are crucial to configuring the wheelchair correctly.
Seat-to-floor height is important if the patient is going to propel the wheelchair with their feet. Seat-to-floor height can be adjusted down approximately 2" by choosing a chair with dual-axles. On adjustable height chairs with dual axles the front forks have several holes to allow moving the front wheels (casters) up or down a few inches. The combination of these adjustments allow for about 2.5 inches of adjustment in seat-to-floor height.
Standard seat-to-floor height for a wheelchair is 18" to 20". Hemi-Height is 17.5 to 18.5- inches and varies somewhat with manufacturers. Anything lower to the ground is either a "super" or "ultra" Hemi. In some cases to achieve a lower seat-to-floor height the rear wheels are changed from the standard 24-inch to either a 22 or 20-inch. The front casters are also changed from a standard 8-inch to a 6 or 5-inch. Remember: if you are adding a cushion to a wheelchair allow that differential (you'll be adding approx. 2" to seat height.)
PHC Customer Service can help answer your wheelchair questions and can make product recommendations for just about any situation. Call us toll-free 1-866-722-4581. Our office hours are 8:30am.-5:30pm. CST. When calling after office hours leave a message and phone number and we will promptly return your call the next business day.
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