Disability aids and equipment
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Average width of powered wheelchair ?

gladysgladys Member Posts: 53 Courageous
Can anyone tell me the average width of a powered wheel chair. ?

I am looking at house adaptations and wondering if the width that they want to open up the doors to would really be necessary. 

Many thanks , Emma 

Replies

  • Sam_ScopeSam_Scope Member Posts: 7,732 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @gladys

    Accessible Doors: In order to accommodate a wheelchair, (a standard wheelchair is 24-27" wide), doorways should be a minimum of 32" wide. If the doorway is located in the typical hallway and requires turning a wheelchair, you'll need a 36" door.

    Toe height is 8 inches (205 mm). The handle at the back of the wheelchair backrest is 36 inches (915 mm) high . The plan view of a person using a wheelchair shows the following: width of the wheelchair measured to the outside of the rear wheels is 26 inches (660 mm).
    Scope
    Senior online community officer
  • Jean_OTJean_OT Member Posts: 532 Pioneering

    Hi @gladys

    If you are looking at the adaptation of a specific house then really what is relevant is not the width of an average powerchair but the width of the wheelchair likely to be used by the person living in that home. Depending on size and type, a wheelchair's width could range from 21” (for narrowest motorised transport chair) to +40” wide (for heavy weight powerchairs, those used by plus sized people etc).

    Doorways many need to be wider if the wheelchair user is turning into it from a narrow corridor etc, therefore the layout of the home is also relevant.

    It may also be relevant how accurately the wheelchair user is able to control their powerchair through tight turns and spaces.

    Here is a link to a pamphlet about wheelchair home design that you might find of interest:

    https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/ext/documents-external/pln-dev-affording-housing-wheelchair-access-plan.pdf

    Hope this helps

    Jean

    https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

  • gladysgladys Member Posts: 53 Courageous
    Ladies I’m so sorry I r only just seen this . Thank you so much for answering these questions it’s really helpful . I will print off this pamphlet as well for when the house adaptations are being done 
  • gladysgladys Member Posts: 53 Courageous
    On another but similar topic . I am looking at buying WAV that is 26.5 inches wide the space for a wheelchair. My son is 6 so at present doesn’t need all that space . However as I won’t be getting rid of the car quickly I’m wondering if that will be enough for when he is older and in a power chair ? Many thanks , Emma 
  • Jean_OTJean_OT Member Posts: 532 Pioneering
    edited October 2018
    Hi @gladys

    It really does depend on how big a person is and what type of chair they use but it sounds as if 26.5 inches should be OK for a while. Other factors to consider: head room (especially for an assistant if they are stood helping), weight limits, compatibility of  ramp/lift/tethering system to the  wheelchair being used.

    Best wishes

    Jean 

    Jean Merrilees BSc MRCOT

    You can read more of my posts at: https://community.scope.org.uk/categories/ask-an-occupational-therapist

  • gladysgladys Member Posts: 53 Courageous
    Jean, that’s great . He’s 5 now so I’ll keep the car for a while . Thanks for your advice !
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