Published on April 22, 2013
how to operate a mobility scooter

Mobility scooters are safe and easy to use for most individuals. Still, it is important to review a few basic instructions prior to operating one.

  • Before taking a scooter out for a drive, make sure the battery is properly charged. Most scooters take a few hours to sufficiently charge, so it is recommended that you charge the battery after each use. Please note that the battery’s lifespan depends on its voltage and the size of the mobility vehicle.

  • Following this, be sure to check the tire pressure on each of the scooter’s tires. A mobility scooter with under or over-inflated tires will cause a decrease in velocity and put strain on the vehicle’s battery life.

  • When you are ready to go, sit on the scooter and position yourself in a comfortable manner. You want to be in a suitable sitting position prior to start up, as to avoid any repositioning while driving.

  • Once comfortable, place both hands on the handlebars (commonly referred to as the "tiller" or "steering mechanism") and position both feet on the mobility scooter's platform. It is very unsafe to ride with your feet off of the scooter. Also, you will have much more control of the device if you drive it with both hands. Much like driving an automobile, a mobility scooter requires the driver’s full attention when in use.

  • To activate the scooter, turn the ignition key or press the “on” button (usually located on the scooter’s dashboard). Do not turn the scooter on until you are ready to drive it.

  • Gently press the throttle control lever to move the scooter forward. Accelerate slowly in order to avoid putting unnecessary wear and tear on the scooter. Most scooters are reversible by pressing the lever on the opposite side.

  • Do your best to drive your mobility scooter on smooth, flat surfaces only. This will ensure it remains in good working condition and will help to preserve battery life. Most scooters are not designed to manoeuvre over rough terrain, hills or steep slopes.

  • Be sure to maintain your scooter and keep it functional. This includes regular maintenance and cleaning.

  • Be respectful to others on the road when you ride your scooter in public places. Always maintain a safe distance from pedestrians.

  • If you plan on transporting your mobility scooter, please ensure that you choose suitable transportation. Most standard scooter models are too large to fit inside a regular car, so a van or truck may be needed. Transportable models will break down for easy transport. You can also consider hiring a mobility transportation service - such assistance is available in both the United States and Canada, so consult your local listings if you desire help.

Follow these safe and easy steps, and you'll be traveling safely. A mobility scooter is a great way to get out and see the world we live in. Be sure to always operate yours in a safe and efficient manner and make sure you enjoy the ride!