Friday, February 5, 2016

Not much to stand on

   My footrest broke off. 
   The other day, I was at my computer, typing, just like I am now, when I wanted to sit back farther in my chair, as I often do.  I pressed my feet down on my footrests, like I always do, to raise my butt up and back, and there was a snap, and the left pedal wasn’t there.  It was something like a glass breaking in your hand or, as I imagine would be more the case, a step breaking when you put your foot on it. 
   I had another footrest that I had put on while waiting for the pedal to be put back on, but now I’m afraid to press down on the footrests.  The trouble is that I have to, and I do it all the time, to adjust myself in my chair.  And this isn’t the first time this has happened. 
   By far the majority of problems I’ve had with my power wheelchair in recent years have been with the footrests – usually with the petals snapping off.  It is sort of a hot mess.  The crazy thing is that these footrests cost about $600 for the pair – that’s right, $300 for a footrest.  What’s crazier is that the footrests I now have, including the one that broke, is a mismatched pair the vendor gave me when the new ones took forever to come from the factory.  And it’s still unclear if the $600 was still charged. 
   I wonder how much will be charged to repair the petal.  Or if I will be given, at last, the new footrests. 
   I can rant about the vendor and how I would go to another one, except that most other wheelchair vendors I’ve gone to and seen are even more of a scam. These places know they have a niche market, a captive market, with no competition to speak of and with many products and services paid for by the state. But the real problem is that the footrests are bad.  Yes, I’m tough on footrests – I literally stand on them when I adjust myself in my chair – but is that my fault, my problem?  It shouldn’t be.    
   I love Quickie power wheelchairs.  They are the best.  I have been using Quickie power chairs for about 25 years, and I’ve had fewer mechanical problems with them.  My other power chairs were always having mechanical problems.  They would break down constantly, leaving my stranded.  Yes, I’m tough on my power chair, driving miles every day (the odometer on my chair now says I’ve gone 2350.8 miles in a bit more than two years), but Quickie power chairs are tough, like I am.
   But their footrests are crap.  I’m sorry to say this, but they are.  They are cheap (even at $600 a pair!).  It is like Quickie made their chair(s) and realized they forgot about the footrests and tacked some on. 
   Just saying.   

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