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7 Best Bariatric Transport Chairs

by Jessica Hegg November 30, 2018 0 Comments

wheelchair and senior couple at the background

Traditional wheelchairs are heavy and bulky, hard to collapse, and even more challenging to get in and out of a vehicle for travel. Bariatric transport chairs, which are lighter in weight, make travel and short trips more pleasurable and easier to manage. The best bariatric transport chairs have been reviewed below and pass our test for being the most comfortable, sturdy, reliable, and affordable.

Top 7 Bariatric Transport Chairs

Model Brand Lowest Price
1. Heavy Duty 332 Transport Chair Nova Medical Products
2. Bariatric Heavy Duty Transport Wheelchair Drive Medical
3. Bariatric Steel Transport Chair ProBasics
4. Bariatric Transport Chair Drive Medical
5. Expedition Rear Wheel Transport Chair Drive
6. Excel Aluminum Transport Chair Medline
7. Lightweight Bariatric Transport Chair Graham-Field

1. Heavy Duty 332 Transport Chair by Nova Medical Products Heavy Duty 332 Transport Chair by Nova Medical Products

This versatile, lightweight chair comes with an adjustable seat belt and has an extra wide 22.5-inch seat that has room to accommodate a wheelchair cushion if desired. Flip-up desk arms help with transfers in and out of bed and chairs, as well as making sitting at a table or desk possible. Swing away removable footrests help you in getting in and out of the chair without interference. This heavy-duty transport chair has eight-inch front wheels and twelve-inch rear wheels that are rugged in design. Hand brakes for the companion and push-to-lock brakes for the user ensure safety at all times. This chair folds down easily for trunk or back seat storage, weights 27.75 lbs., and support up to 400 lbs.

  • Includes adjustable seat belt
  • Easily maneuvers over all types of terrain indoors or out
  • Well designed and very sturdy
  • A breathable seat cushion is recommended for airflow and seat comfort when used for long periods

2. Bariatric Heavy Duty Transport Wheelchair by Drive Medical Bariatric Heavy Duty Transport Wheelchair by Drive Medical

Drive Medical offers one of the highest height weight capacity transport chairs on the market. With a steel reinforced dual cross-brace frame and heavy-duty nylon upholstery, this bariatric transport chair is built solid for support and safety during your travels. Height adjustable swing-away footrests are removable, reversible desk length padded arms ensure a good fit and the ability to move freely from bed to wheelchair and back again. This chair has flat-free twelve-inch rear wheels and companion activated wheel locks.

  • Easy to get in and out of vehicles
  • The seat is comfortable, even for extended periods
  • Includes back carry pouch
  • Seat-to-ground height not adjustable so it may not work well for those who are shorter in size

3. Bariatric Steel Transport Chair by ProBasics Bariatric Steel Transport Chair by ProBasics

ProBasics' bariatric transport chair is loaded with extras, including an adjustable seat belt. This chair has nylon upholstery that's reinforced for comfort and stability. The silver vein steel frame features dual reinforced cross braces. The hand brakes are companion activated and lock for safe transfers and extended stops. The armrests on this heavy-duty transport chair are desk-length for inclusive, comfortable table seating. Swing-away footrests are made of aluminum and come with heel loops to keep feet safely in place. This chair has solid rubber 12-inch rear wheels that provide a smooth ride over indoor and outdoor surfaces. This transport wheelchair has a seat size of 22 inches, weighs 41 lbs, and supports up to 450 lbs.

  • Fits easily into small car trunks
  • Includes seat belt
  • Solid, high-quality chair
  • Seat-to-floor height non-adjustable

4. Bariatric Transport Chair by Drive Medical Bariatric Transport Chair by Drive Medical

This transport chair from Drive Medical comes with large twelve-inch flat-free wheels that are designed to glide over indoor flooring and outdoor terrain smoothly. Swing-away footrests are easy to use and slide out of the way when not needed. The armrests on this chair are padded and comfortable. The attachable push bar includes padded foam grips that make it easier for companions to push and control the chair. Companion brakes are located on the hand grips in the back and work well. The seat is 22 inches and made of heavy-duty nylon reinforced upholstery that's comfortable and breathable. This heavy-duty transport chair weighs 36 lbs and supports up to 450 lbs.

  • Includes padded push bar between handlebars with for more ergonomic pushing and better control
  • Extremely stable, even on sloping and uneven surfaces
  • Comes with seat belt
  • Padded armrests are not desk length

5. Expedition Rear Wheel Transport Chair by Drive Expedition Rear Wheel Transport Chair by Drive

The Expedition from Drive is a lightweight bariatric transport chair that's ideal for those on-the-go and need a wheelchair that's built for travel and portability. Large twelve-inch flat-free non-marking rear wheels and eight-inch front wheels move freely and smoothly on most surfaces. The armrests are fixed and padded. The seat is nineteen inches in width and made of breathable, lightweight nylon upholstery. This latex-free chair also includes swing-away footrests, companion brakes, and a solid aluminum frame. This chair weighs in at nineteen pounds, folds down small enough to fit in a small car trunk or back seat, and supports up to 300 lbs.

  • Available in 2 colors, red or blue
  • Weighs just 19 lbs
  • Adjustable seat belt included
  • Hand brakes can be easily accidentally locked and take some getting used to

6. Excel Aluminum Transport Chair by Medline Excel Aluminum Transport Chair by Medline

This powder coated aluminum blue bariatric transport chair from Medline is built for frequent travelers and for those who need a super lightweight chair that folds down small. The nineteen-inch nylon seat upholstery is breathable and comfortable, even during extended periods. The rear wheels are twelve inches and the front wheels are eight inches, and they glide smoothly over surfaces inside and out. Other chair features include detachable swing-away footrests, padded armrests, companion hand brakes, and an included seat belt. This lightweight bariatric transport chair weighs 22 lbs and supports up to 300 lbs.

  • Easy to operate and control for companions
  • Seat belt included
  • Folds down small enough to fit in a small trunk or behind the driver seat
  • Wheels are plastic so rides outside can be a little bumpy

7. Lightweight Bariatric Transport Chair by Graham-Field Lightweight Bariatric Transport Chair by Graham-Field

Graham-Field's lightweight bariatric transport chair offer all the convenience of having a lighter chair yet all the comforts you're used to finding in traditional wheelchairs. This chair has a wide 24-inch seat made of black, padded nylon upholstery that offers up comfortable seating. Brakes are located on the hand grips and controlled by the caregiver. The desk-length armrests flip-up so you slide in and out of the chair without hassle. This height weight capacity transport chair is built with a solid steel frame, weighs 31 lbs, and can support up to 400 lbs.

  • Ultra-wide 24” padded seat is super comfortable
  • Has flip-up desk-length arms for convenience and table seating
  • Brakes fold down making the chair very compact to transport
  • No seat belt included


What to Look for When Choosing a Bariatric Transport Chair

Bariatric transport chairs are larger in size than standard transport wheelchairs but less bulky and lighter in weight than traditional wheelchairs with Mag-style wheels. When shopping for height weight capacity transport chair, keep the following in mind.

  • Seat Width

You want to be able to sit and fit comfortably in your wheelchair seat, but you also need a little extra wiggle room to accommodate bulky winter clothing, movement, and getting in and out of the chair.

To get an accurate reading, measure the width of your bottom and then add one to two inches to that number to get your needed wheelchair seat size.

  • Seat Back Width

The seat back is the portion of the seat your spine will rest against while you're seated. Just like the actual seat, you want your body to fit comfortably into this space, leaving just enough room for bulky jackets and movement.

To find your seat back width size, measure yourself at the broadest part of your chest from armpit to armpit. This number will be the width of the seat back you require.

  • Weight Capacity

Each heavy-duty transport chair comes with a recommended weight limit. Paying attention to this number is important. For safety and comfort reasons, you should never settle for a chair with a recommended weight limit that falls below your current body weight.

  • Portability

Bariatric transport chairs are pushed from behind by a companion. They tend to have frames that are lightweight to increase their portability. Be mindful of a transport chair's weight before purchasing to be sure your companion can fold it down with ease and lift it in and out of a vehicle without straining.

Other Helpful Wheelchair Accessories and Mobility Aids

With a little help, you can be more mobile than you ever imagined. Check out these mobility aids and wheelchair accessories.

  • Scooters and Knee Walkers

If you've broken or sprained an ankle or live with one-sided arthritis, you may find freedom in using a scooter or an all-terrain knee walker while out and about. And don’t forget knee scooter accessories!

  • Wheelchairs

There are different wheelchairs for different uses. Whether you're confined to home or would like to get out and travel, our list of the best wheelchairs can help you find your next ride.

  • Wheelchair Gel Cushions

Make any wheelchair more comfortable with a gel cushion. These small pillows redistribute weight to improve posture and prevent pressure sores.

  • Folding Reacher Grabber

Everything can be within reach when you have a folding reacher grabber. These tools extend your reach so you can grab items off a high shelf or counter, pull socks on, pick things up off the floor, and more. Best of all, these medical devices fold down small enough to be stored in a wheelchair bag.

  • Grab Bars

Grab bars give you added support and balance so you can live more independently. Grab bars for shower safety and grab bars for the toilet make everyday tasks easier and safer.

Find a Bariatric Transport Chair that Fits

When mobility is limited, your world can seem very small. Finding a good fitting, well made bariatric transport chair helps you see the world anew again. The best transport chairs are comfortable, small enough to fit in your vehicle's trunk or behind the driver seat, and offer a smooth ride.


Jessica Hegg
Jessica Hegg

Jessica Hegg is the content manager and at With vast product knowledge and understanding of individual needs, she aims to share valuable information on making smart buying choices, overcoming obstacles and overall improving the quality of life for others. Avid gym-rat and nutrition enthusiast, she’s interested in all things related to staying active and living healthy lifestyle.

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