How to properly charge your powered wheelchair - Beyond Mobility.

One of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to electric wheelchairs is 'how do I charge my wheelchair?' 

We're here to give you everything you need to know about charging your powerchair, and why. 

How often should you charge your wheelchair? 

The batteries in your wheelchair will either be AGM (Absorbed glass matting), GEL, or, a Hybrid of the both (Found in the Permobil hybrid batteries system). 

All of these batteries should be charged following any use to maintain their integrity. Do not let them remain uncharged, or, wait for them to be low before charging. You should charge them, even if you've only used them for a short amount of time. 

Charging your wheelchair after every use overnight (For 8 - 12 hours), will ensure that the capacity of the batteries are maintained for a longer period of time. 

In summary: 

  • Charge overnight after any use
  • Try to charge before they reach 30% state of charge - do not leave them to run low
  • Take the batteries off charge once fully charged to avoid over charging 

What about if I'm not using my wheelchair? 

If you're not using your wheelchair, it's important to know that your batteries will still discharge and will potentially 'fail' if left uncharged for too long. 

The first thing to do would be to try to isolate the batteries. Permobil powerchairs have an isolation switch on the rear that will help to maintain the batteries when not in use. 

If you're on holiday / vacation, in hospital, or, just not using your wheelchair - try to have it charged overnight, once a week. This will ensure that the batteries are not left to degrade whilst not being used. The chair will not need to be driven, nor will the batteries need to be drained. 

In summary: 

  • If possible, isolate the batteries 
  • Charge overnight (8 - 12 hours) at least once a week


How do I safely charge my wheelchair batteries? 

To safely charge your batteries, follow this process; 

  1. Switch-off your powered wheelchair 
  2. with the mains switch off, connect the charger into the charger port on the wheelchair 
  3. Switch-on the power at the mains 
  4. Leave to charge until fully charged (8 - 12 hours) 

Once the chair has fully charged, follow this process; 

  1. Switch-off the power at the mains 
  2. Disconnect the charger from the wheelchair

If the mains power is on when you connect to, or, disconnect from the wheelchair - there is a potential of 'arcing' between the charger connector and the wheelchair charger socket, causing potential damage. 

  • Do not leave on charge once fully charged, as this runs the risk of 'overcharging' 
  • Do not leave the charger connected to the wheelchair whilst the mains power is off 


Ensure you refer to the manufacturers guidelines for your specific electric wheelchair or powerchair as some manufacturers may suggest other charging guidance. 


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