Can a Rollator Be Used as a Wheelchair? The Best Rollator Transport Chairs

Scott Grant, ATP, CRTS®

Certified Assistive Technology Professional
Medical Equipment Guru
Mobility Specialist
Senior Advocate

senior man sitting in a rollator transport chair and smiling
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Walkers that convert to wheelchairs are essential tools for seniors with limited mobility. They give the elderly the freedom to walk around as they please. But, when the senior needs the extra support or needs pushed, they quickly change into transport chairs.

The best rollator transport chairs have comfortable seats, storage areas like baskets for personal belongings, hand brakes, and handles that adjust to properly fit the user. They are great tools for both seniors and their caretakers.


How Can a Rollator Transport Chair Combo Help?

Here is a common scenario. You take your grandmother, Mary, to the doctor’s office for her monthly follow up and to pick up a few prescription refills. Now, Mary is fairly independent and likes to get around by herself so she walks beside you with the help of her rollator.

But she gets about half-way there and suddenly need to rest. Because she uses a rollator, you have a seat available for her to rest on.

The problem now is that you are going to be late. You were already running late but now it’s worse. What can you do?

Can you just use the rollator as a wheelchair and push her? No, it is unsafe to push a person in a normal rollator. They have a high center of gravity and will tip over quite easily.

You can’t make her walk because she could possibly fall. If there was only a way you could magically turn this rollator walker into a wheelchair and push her.

The good news is that a rollator transport chair product is exactly what you need in that situation.

Medical equipment should be discussed with or prescribed by a doctor, therapist, or other health professional. They know you and your medical history. I don’t. Always follow their advice. Nothing in this article should be construed as medical advice.

Rollator Transport Chair Comparisons

Here are my recommended rollator transport chairs based on my work experience and mobility training. Keep scrolling to read detailed reviews and compare today’s price for each of these products.

ProBasics Transport Rollator
ProBasics Transport Rollator
$121.35
$129.95
in stock
6 new from $121.30
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am
Amazon.com
Free shipping
Drive Medical Duet Transport Chair and Walker Rollator
Drive Medical Duet Transport Chair and Walker Rollator
$146.05
in stock
11 new from $146.05
6 used from $133.77
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am
Amazon.com
Free shipping
Lumex Lightweight Hybrid Rollator Transport Chair
Lumex Lightweight Hybrid Rollator Transport Chair
$177.57
$229.99
in stock
7 new from $174.99
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am
Amazon.com
Free shipping
Medline Translator Combination Rollator and Transport Chair,
Medline Translator Combination Rollator and Transport Chair,
$204.34
out of stock
2 used from $183.69
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am
Amazon.com
Free shipping

Combo Rollator Transport Chair Reviews

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Drive Medical Duet Transport Chair and Walker Rollator

Drive Medical Duet Transport Chair and Walker Rollator

$146.05  in stock
11 new from $146.05
6 used from $ 133.77
Free shipping
See Deal
Amazon.com
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am

Features

  • Combines the features of a Rollator and transport chair in one unit. An individual can ambulate independently or be pushed safely by a care giver
  • Locking flip-up armrests and flip-down footrest are used in transport chair mode and are easily removed and stowed away in Rollator mode
  • Tool-free, two-position contoured padded backrest with a comfortable padded seat and carry pouch for added privacy and security of personal items
  • Folding frame with lock-out feature to ensure the unit stays open while in use and ensures the unit will stay folded during transport. 8 inch casters are ideal for indoor and outdoor use
  • Product Weight: 20 lbs; Overall Dimensions: 26"(L) x 25.5"(W) x 37"(H); Seat Dimensions: 13"(D) x 13.5"(W) x 21"(H); Handle Height: 31.5"-37"; Weight Capacity: 300 lbs

This two in one mobility aid is awesome because it is super light but it can support up to 300 lbs. The handle height is adjustable to fit a wide range of seniors. It has all the features a senior citizen would want out of this type of device.

The arm and footrests lock into place for security and are easily removable when the unit is in “Rollator” (or walker) mode. When in transport chair mode, the seat cushion and backrest are very comfortable and it has a lock-in feature to ensure that the chair stays open while in use. This same feature keeps it folded during transportation or storage.

Best of all, this one comes with a convenient carrying pouch to hold all of your things while you’re on the go. It comes in burgundy, black, or blue.

How to Convert the Drive Duet

This one does take a little bit of work to go from a walker to a rollator. First, you will have to move the backrest to the other side of the rollator using quick push pins. Next, fold the armrests up. Finally, fold the legrests down from the main frame.

The advantage to the Duet is that all the parts needed are attached. There is no need to carry around extra parts.

The video below walks you through this process.

Here’s a video from the manufacturer that highlights these options and how they help seniors with mobility problems.


Lumex Lightweight Hybrid Rollator Transport Chair

Lumex Lightweight Hybrid Rollator Transport Chair

$229.99
$177.57  in stock
7 new from $174.99
Free shipping
See Deal
Amazon.com
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am

Features

  • Compact design
  • Easy to use handbreaks
  • Durable aluminum frame

I really like this rollator transport chair combo from Lumex too. It is really easy to operate and even easier to turn into a transport chair.

It is one of the lightest options and is simple to fold and load into the trunk of a car. This one folds a little differently using a X brace folding design. It folds like a wheelchair so it will be flat when in the trunk or in storage. The handle height is adjustable on this model too.

There is a drawback to the Lumex model though. The seat is very shallow and not very comfortable to sit on for long periods of time. This doesn’t support the legs very well and they will hang out the front of the chair.

Also, this is a more premium product because of the folding style and other features so the price will be a bit higher than the others.

Converting the Lumex Hybrid

The Lumex Hybrid is one of the easiest to change for transport. First, you simply push the back support fabric to the other side of the rollator. Then you attach and lock the leg rests. The side supports become the armrests.

There are a few drawbacks to consider here. First, I think this puts the senior in an awkward riding position. Especially if they are shorter or short-bodied. They will end up in a position where their arms are unnaturally high. (if you are looking for walkers for shorter people, check out this guide.)

This is probably ok for short rides from the car to an office. But, not for a day spent shopping at the mall.

The drawback here is that you have to carry the legrests with you. They do not stay attached to the rollator. But you can store them in the under seat pouch so that they will be readily available.

Here is a short video from the manufacturer highlighting these options:


Medline Translator Combination Rollator and Transport Chair,

Medline Translator Combination Rollator and Transport Chair,

$204.34
 out of stock

2 used from $ 183.69
Free shipping
See Deal
Amazon.com
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am

Features

  • Easily converts from a rollator to a transport chair and vice-versa in just seconds
  • Comes with a convenient cup holder, under-the-seat storage bag, zippered side carrying case, and easy-to-adjust push-button foot rests
  • Leg style: swing-away detachable footrest
  • 250 pound weight capacity
  • Seat size 19" x 16" (48 cm x 41 cm) and 8" wheels

For more back support, check out Medline’s transport walker/chair. The back pad on this product is much larger and more comfortable than Drive Medical’s devices. This one also has more personal storage options with an under the seat basket, side carrying case, and even a built-in cup holder.

Another cool feature of this one is the built-in footrests, which fold out incredibly easily. The handles of this product are also adjustable, which is a plus.

The drawback here is that the seat itself isn’t padded well, so you may need to buy an extra seat cushion to go along with this.

How to Convert the Medline Translator

This is for sure the easiest product to convert. The simple process is only 2 steps. First, push the back strap fabric towards the handles of the rollator. Then flip the legrests around from their locked position towards the front of the chair. That’s it. All accessories you need stay mounted to the chair with no need to carry around extra parts.

This video walks through the converting this rollator into a transport chair:


ProBasics Transport Rollator

ProBasics Transport Rollator

$129.95
$121.35  in stock
6 new from $121.30
Free shipping
See Deal
Amazon.com
as of March 23, 2019 9:46 am

Features

  • ROLLATOR WALKER FOR SENIORS that doubles as a transport chair. Walkers comes with large 8-inch wheels with wheel locks. A rolling walker that is perfect for indoor and outdoor use. A great choice for seniors, elderly, handicap, or disabled adults.
  • HEIGHT ADJUSTABLE, 4 WHEEL WALKER with fold down footrests make transporting an adult or patient easy. The rollator doubles as a folding walker or transport wheelchair as the patient can have a seat while being pushed. Walker folds up easily for storage or travel.
  • WITH LOCKABLE HANDBRAKES that are easy to operate. Doubles as a stand up walker or a sit down transport chair. Handbrakes lock easily for those who are at risk for falling.
  • PADDED SEAT AND BACK SUPPORT is reversible depending on whether you are using it as a rollator or transport chair. Back acts as a push handle while in transport chair mode. A perfect mobility walkers for seniors with seat who are on the go.
  • VERY LIGHTWEIGHT ALUMINUM FRAME rollator that holds individuals 250lbs or less. Trust Roscoe Medical, a leading manufacturer of walkers for seniors and mobility solutions for the elderly, disabled, and handicapped.

Roscoe (now known as ProBasics) also makes a great rollator device, which has the unique rubber wheel feature. This is especially advantageous in preventing slips and staying steady in the direction you want to go. A convenient basket is located under the seat for storage.

It’s also super lightweight weighing only 22 pounds. It is foldable and portable too!

Because it’s the more basic model, it has the best price of these options.

How to Convert the Pro Basics Transport Rollator

At first glance, it seems that the rider would face the rear once this rollator changes over for pushing, but that is not the case. This one is also very easy to change over because all you have to do is flip down the foot plates and you are ready to go. You can convert this one too while the patient is seated in the chair.

Here is the secret to this one: After converting the chair, the helper walks around to the other side and uses the top part of the backrest bar as the push handle. Kind of like pushing a shopping cart.


Rollator Transport Chairs: A Buying Guide

These rollator transport chairs are one of my favorite pieces of medical equipment (yes, I do have favorites) because they are handy for both the user and the caregiver. Here are some tips for you when shopping for a combination walker wheelchair.

Uses for a  Combination Wheelchair and Walker

nurse helping elder person to walk with walker

It’s no secret that seniors tend to have balance issues. Walkers can greatly reduce the potential for dangerous, even life-threatening, falls. They provide a sense of stability and safety that you just can’t get anywhere else.

However, it’s also a great feature to have a chair built into the walker, even if you’re not necessarily immobile, so that you can take a break and have a rest whenever you need!

If you have a more serious medical condition like neuropathy, these walking aids are essential physical therapy tools as well. They allow you to practice walking while giving you the option to be handled by a caretaker if you can’t walk for any particular reason. These devices make you – and your caretaker’s – lives much easier overall.

In general, both walkers and wheelchairs tend to provide seniors with a sense of independence and safety. They also put their families’ minds at ease, knowing that they have that tool to support them throughout their everyday lives and daily tasks that can be extremely difficult without one of these tools. Just getting around the house can be a hassle as we get older – but it doesn’t have to be with these helpful mobility products.

Rollators vs. Transport Chairs: What’s the Difference?

Typically, rollators and transports chairs are created for 2 different purposes. And, you usually cannot substitute one for the other. These are the exception to that rule, however.

folsing rollator walker with seat
A Typical Rollator Walker with Seat

Rollators are used by seniors who are able to walk but need a little assistance due to weakness, balance, or COPD. They have a seat built on to them that gives the senior a place to rest when they need it.

But, rollators are not meant to be pushed by other people. They have a higher center of gravity. So, pushing a person in a rollator is risking a tip over and fall. I know, it’s common to see people being pushed in these at the mall but it isn’t safe. Just going over a small threshold is enough to make these tip.

You can read more about rollators by clicking here if you’d like to learn more about them.

A Typical Transport Wheelchair

Transport chairs are meant to be pushed by a caregiver with the senior riding in the seat. So, can’t a senior just use the handles on the back to walk with and then get in the seat when they get tired? Sorry, but no.

The handles on the back of a transport chair are not for weight bearing or support. They are there only for the convenience of the senior’s companion. They are designed to be counterbalanced by the weight of someone in the seat. Leaning on these handles for support without someone in the chair will cause it to tip backward.

So, using either of these products in a way they weren’t intended, could lead to injury or falls. But, the combo rollator transport chairs meet both these needs by letting a senior walk when they want and ride when they need to.

Important Features

There are several important features to look for when shopping for a convertible walker wheelchair. Many of these have to do with safety and convenience of both the user and the caregiver.

Lightweight / Foldable and Portable

All of these products are foldable so that they can travel with you easily about everywhere you go. Look for one that is lightweight too. This makes them portable and easy to lift and place in the trunk of a car.

This is especially important if the caregiver has any medical issues to that prevent them from lifting heavier objects. My recommendation is to find one that weighs 25 lbs or less.

Comfortable Padded Seat

All of these combo chairs have seats as well since the person will need a place to rest. Look for a chair with a soft, comfortable seat.

Standard nylon upholstery is ok for short rides but not for longer ones. I recommend investing in a good cushion if the senior will ride in it for long periods of time.

Place to Rest the Legs

young female doctor with an elderly patient in a transport wheelchair at the hospital.
If the time comes for a transport chair, it is important to get a good one that will last a long time.

Because these products double as wheelchairs, it is important that they have a place to rest the legs and feet when the elderly person is riding.

Otherwise, their feet can get caught in the wheels or drag along the ground. This is both uncomfortable and unsafe.

But, these legrests and footrests also need to be out of the way when the senior is walking with it in “rollator mode.”

Fortunately, the models I will recommend below have legrests that fold out of the way when they aren’t being used.

Adjustable Handle Height

It is important that the rollator fits the senior properly. Find a model that has adjustable height handles. This allows them to be raised or lowered so that the user isn’t bent over or putting too much stress on their upper body. The proper handle height is when they meet the wrist joint.

Front Facing

Note that, for safety, these products are designed to be used with the senior facing forward. Occasionally, I see these being used backward with the patient facing towards the rear. This is unsafe and, even, a little awkward looking.

When shopping, think about where the user will be while you are changing it over. Most of these do require the patient to be standing or sitting somewhere else. This is because a part needs to be moved or accessory parts like footrests need to be installed.


Summary and Final Recommendations

Rollator transport chairs like these should be considered by any senior who needs mobility assistance and is using a rollator. They really do present the best of both worlds for a user and a caregiver. Walk when you want to walk. Rest when you want to rest.

If you prefer a regular transport chair after reading this, click here to check out my favorites.

When shopping for walkers that change into wheelchairs, make sure the model is light and easy to fold. This makes them much easier to transport and load into the back of a car.

Also, make sure the chair includes footrests that are adjustable to fit the person. You also want a transport rollator with a nice, wide, and comfortable seating area.

These are a few of the best walker/wheelchair combinations on the market today, but feel free to search around yourself and find out what would work best for both you and your caretaker.

If you ask which of these I think is the best rollator transport chair overall, I would say go with the Medline Translator. It has a great mix of features, is very lightweight, and has extras none of the others offer.

Buying one of these devices is an important step toward mobility and independence, so check them out today and let me know in the comments below if you have any questions.

Have you ever used one of these hybrid wheelchair walker products? If so, please share your experience and recommendations in the comments below. If you found this guide helpful. Please share with your friends on social media.

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