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Welcome to UK Wheelchairs - the home of value and quality

What to look for in a wheelchair powerpack

Power packs for wheelchairs are relatively simple pieces of equipment that allow you to turn a manual wheelchair in to an electric wheelchair. Powerpacks have been around for many years but have become so much more popular in the past few years due to their massively improved performance. This improvement is largely down to the progress made in battery performance.

All wheelchair powerpacks are made up of 3 key components. The controller, the motor(s) and the battery. With battery’s becoming smaller lighter and more powerful the scope of the powerpack has improved and some now match the performance of a purpose build electric wheelchair when it comes to power and range.

Click here to see the benefits of a wheelchair powerpack  

Powerpack controllers come in 2 forms, user controllers and attendant controllers for the carer to control the wheelchair. The user controller can be fitted to either arm rest allowing easy access. The attendant controllers are fitted to one of the push handles and allow the carer to control the motion of the chair with simple forward and reverse controls. These can be used in conjunction with attendant brakes where fitted.

We often receive enquiries from wheelchair users where their partner / carer also has some limited mobility. In these situations, a wheelchair power pack is perfect as it allows them to go out together safely, bringing great benefit to both the carer and the wheelchair user. This allows them freedom to get to places

Wheelchair powerpacks from TGA

Lets look at the TGA range of wheelchair powerpacks which are very compact, easy to fit and come in 4 different specifications depending on user weight. The TGA powerpack range are designed and made here in the UK and are designed to attach to almost any manual wheelchair in minutes.

Solo powerpack

Some of the simpler powerpacks have a single drive wheel, a maximum 18 stone user weight and has forward travel only. These models are ideal for occasional use or use in largely flat level areas such as shopping centres where the surface is smooth and there are no gradients. It is capable of 4 mph which is a brisk walking speed. See the Solo powerpack here

Duo Powerpack

The TGA Duo wheelchair powerpack shown in situDuo As the name suggests the TGA Duo wheelchair powerpack has two drive wheels meaning that there is twice the amount of grip in touch with the ground giving more traction. It is limited to 18 stone users’ weight but is better equipped to handle inclines or less smooth surfaces. The Duo powerpack from TGA also has a reverse feature that makes tighter more intricate manoeuvres far easier. These models are very popular in care home environments and ate also capable of speeds up to 4 mph. See the TGA Duo powerpack here

Heavy duty powerpacks

The TGA Duo wheelchair powerpack shown in situAs their name suggests these extra strong heavy-duty models are designed for larger users up to 26 stone in weight. This model also has forward and reverse gears and can move along at speeds up to 4 mph. See the heavy duty powerpack model here.

PLUS powerpack

The TGA wheelchair powerpack PLUS shown in situ

Finally, the last model in the TGA powerpack range is the PLUS which is the most powerful model and operates from a 24-volt system which allows it to propel users up to 32 stone in weight and is limited to 3 mph. See the powerpack PLUS from TGA here

All models in the TGA powerpack range have a built-in security feature which prevents unintended use. Without the key being in place the power cannot be engaged. The controller has two speed settings which can be selected before you start off. When you are ready to go you simply push down on the button and you will continue until that is released. If you wish to change direction, you simply turn the lever on the rocker switch which allows you to select the reverse gear.

Range of all wheelchair powerpacks varies enormously depending on the surface and the incline on which you are travelling. TGA state that their models are generally good for a top range of 10 miles but again you need to consider the surroundings on which you'll be operating.

All models fit under the wheelchair seat which allows unhindered walking behind the wheelchair. Most can be fitted with ease in just a couple of minutes. They can remain in place and their batteries can be removed for charging purposes.

Watch the fitting of a wheelchair powerpack

When it is time to fold and transport or store the wheelchair it is incredibly easy to remove the powerpack. The TGA range are particularly easy to detach quickly as they use a simple Velcro system for attaching the battery to the main unit. TGA even offer a wheeled trolley to allow you to transport the powerpack independently when it is detached from the wheelchair.

With thousands of units being sold each year in the UK alone, the powerpack has revolutionised the lives of many wheelchair users. With affordable prices you too can benefit from these light but effective wheelchair wheelchairs.