There comes a time in everyone’s life where moving is not as easy as it used to be. When it’s hard work reaching the end of the mall without sitting down, maybe it is time to make life easier by letting a foldable electric chair drive you around. The electrical Zinger Chair can do just that.
Before we get started on everything Zinger, note that this Zinger chair review is a bit different from our other wheelchair reviews because the Zinger is not technically a wheelchair.
In fact, the manufacturer states that legally, it shouldn’t be called a wheelchair. We’ve used the term power chair to reflect this.
In This Article
Zinger Power Chair Review: Overview
This easy-to-use battery powered chair promises to get you around and taking part in activities even if your legs are not holding you up as well as they used to. In our Zinger chair review we will take a closer look at its features and performance, in particular, to find out how portable and usable it is.
Straight out of the box, the Zinger is pretty easy to use. Just unfold the chair, insert the included battery, and you’re on your way. The comfortable chair is operated with two levers and folds up easily to fit in the trunk or even a car.
The Zinger portable chair is designed and distributed by firstSTREET in Virginia. The American company was founded over 30 years ago and specializes in innovative products for ‘Boomers and Beyond.’
Zinger Chair Review: Pros
- Comes fully assembled
- Fits easily under desks
- Folds quickly
- Very maneuverable
- Quite comfortable
- Weighs under 48 pounds
Zinger Chair Review: Cons
- The seat is only 16.5 inches wide
- Small front wheels
- No handles for moving the chair manually
- Fixed armrests
- You have to operate it with both hands
Zinger Chair Review: Things to Consider Before Buying a Zinger
The Zinger can take you places your legs may not be able to. While it is not an approved medical device or wheelchair, the chair serves extremely well as a mobility aid. In this, it’s well suited to older persons who are easily fatigued.
If you are able to get in and out of this chair by yourself, then you can take advantage of this personal electric vehicle. If not, there are also certified battery-powered wheelchairs available on the market, one of which we talk about later in the article.
In the box the Zinger Chair arrives in, you will find the assembled chair, the battery, the charger, and a removable clip-on cargo basket. Tools are included to fix the battery in place and to remove the armrests if you prefer them off.
Other optional accessories you may want to think about are a seatback bag, a cup/bottle holder, and a cane holder. Spare batteries and tires are also available from the supplier.
The Zinger Portable Chair: Features & Benefits
During our Zinger chair review, a number of features stood out. We were interested to know to what extent comfort and utility were compromised for the lightweight design. Let’s take a look now.
Portability and Weight
The most striking feature of the Zinger is its portability. The chair is quickly folded just by pulling on one strap and is easy to put in the back of a car.
With its weight under 48 pounds, it’s equivalent to a piece of luggage. And as you would expect in a decent travel bag, it folds in a way that allows you to pull the chair on two wheels with a dedicated handle. This nifty feature means it’s simple to tow the chair when you’re not using it or moving it to a vehicle.
The frame is made from lightweight aluminum tubing which makes the chair easy to grip when you’re carrying it folded up.
When collapsed, the full dimensions mean the Zinger should fit in the trunk of most small cars: 10 x 36 x 25 inches.
Safety and Security
To operate the Zinger Chair you must be able to stand and take some steps confidently. It is not for people who are fully immobile.
Getting in a Zinger is not that different from sitting down on a chair, so you need to have the use of both arms. Because you’re driving an electric vehicle of sorts, adequate vision is a must.
There is a bit of a learning curve to go through with the Zinger chair. Its mode of operation is slightly different to other mobility aids with the two levers.
The driver first sets the speed mode, then engages the wheels with the two levers before accelerating by squeezing the Variable Speed Trigger, which starts the motor and moves the chair forward. Users say this becomes intuitive very quickly.
The brakes are activated by pulling the control lever back. Note that in wet conditions the brakes can lack grip, a drawback that users should be aware of. The stronger parking brake is set via two separate levers under the seat. Anti-tip rollers prevent the chair from flipping back.
When the reverse mode is engaged, an intermittent beep warns bystanders. There is also a horn to sound warnings in case you drive a little too close to pedestrians.
The lithium-ion batteries are secured with an anti-theft key. A helpful feature that should prevent any opportunistic thieves.
With a very tight turning circle, the chair is easy to maneuver in tight spaces. This is aided further by the intuitive two-lever control system whereby each wheel has its lever. Pushing only one forward turns the chair tightly on the other locked wheel.
Pulling the levers backward stops the chair. Pushing the reverse button on the control panel once engages the reverse drive, helpful when moving away from a table or desk. Again, both handles need to be pressed down first to engage the wheels before pressing the speed trigger.
In practice, it’s still probably easier to push from a table with your hands or feet and then turn sharply. Only eight inches of clearance at the front is needed to make the turn.
The six-inch front and nine-inch back wheels are made from non-marking, solid rubber.
Outdoors on a footpath, or even in long airport corridors, the velocity can be increased with a trigger on the right control handle. The chair can operate in three speed ranges, slow, medium and fast, which reach up to one, three and six miles per hour respectively.
Note that you cannot change the speed range when you’re underway and need to stop to make this adjustment.
The solid tires travel well on all terrains. But take care in the sand and when approaching steep steps.
Comfort and Convenience
There’s no doubt, the Zinger is comfy. Breathable, honeycomb mesh material on the seat is designed to avoid perspiration and the inflatable rear wheels making for a smooth ride on uneven ground. One downside is that the swinging footplate is not adjustable.
If you plan to take the Zinger shopping, a carry basket to hold bags and small items clips onto the frame under the seat.
With a range of up to eight miles (over an hour of driving at maximum speed), the battery can be recharged in just four hours. Either remove it or leave it in place when charging. An indicator light on the control panel shows the remaining charge.
The chair will generally travel free on most airplanes, but you will be required to remove the battery and carry that in the cabin. Remember to inform the airline in advance that you will be bringing a device powered with a lithium-ion battery—permitted for mobility devices under aviation regulations.
The Zinger Chair comes with a one-year limited warranty so if anything goes wrong and you’re not at fault, the company is responsible for maintenance.
Alternatives to the Zinger Portable Chair
In our Zinger chair review, we looked at other powered mobility aid options, including both wheelchairs and mobility scooters.
Sentire Med Forza FCX Electric Wheelchair
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A comparable but more expensive chair is made by Sentire Med. The Forza also folds down but not as compactly as the Zinger. With two heavier batteries, it has a 20-mile driving range and can tackle a steeper gradient up to 15 degrees, helpful if your suburb is hilly.
Unlike the Zinger, it uses a single joystick to turn, move forward and reverse. And it’s registered with the FDA. It has high five-inch ground clearance, shock absorbers, and electromagnetic brakes.
However, it weighs considerably more at 67 pounds, mostly due to the large batteries below the seat. Maximum carrying capacity is 360 pounds. The seat is 19 inches wide and 24 inches on the outside.
Travel Pro Scooter
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The Travel Pro Premium 3-Wheel Mobility Scooter is considerably cheaper. Like the Zinger, it has good maneuverability. However, at 6.3 miles maximum range on a full battery charge, you’re not going as far.
The weight capacity of 275 pounds is only ten pounds greater than the Zinger and the six miles per hour top speed is the same.
We think that the three-wheel design handicaps the Travel Pro Scooter’s stability. Also, it cannot be packed up as easily and compactly as the Zinger. The Travel Pro does, however, have the advantage of coming apart into five pieces, none of which weighs more than 27.5 pounds.
Product Comparison: Zinger Verses Forza FCX and Travel Pro
|Modle||Zinger Chair||Forza Fcx||Travel Pro|
|67 pounds||120 pounds|
|19 inches||17 inches|
Getting mobile when your legs won’t carry you that far can be solved with a small electric vehicle. This Zinger portable power chair review examined the most lightweight solution. Ideal for travel, the chair can quickly be folded into an easy-to-carry package. Plus the Zinger is also in its element indoors with its narrow size, easy maneuverability, and low armrests.
For more challenging uses the heavier Forza FCX electric wheelchair is a powerful alternative.
For a budget option, consider the Travel Pro 3-wheeled scooter.
Which recommended product in this Zinger chair review will you check out first?