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  • Wheelchair Repair Woes

    Posted by deann-r on December 30, 2021 at 11:00 am

    I want to cry. In effort to make my new “top of the line” chair functionally comfortable I’ve been trying to make adjustments for the last year. One of my main gripes (I have several) are the armrest pads. Obviously, whoever the designer is don’t use them because I’d rather rest my arm on a moss covered boulder. At least then it would be rounded and cushioned. Finally, after being ghosted for months and a bad cable message popping up, the wheelchair guy makes an appearance.

    Parts ordered and another waiting game ensues. He calls yesterday to see if I’ll be around today. Yes, yes, I’ll be here. Never mind it’s year-end so I have my other job to attend to. Thankfully he was late because I needed an emergency bathroom break before he got here. When he pulled out the new arm pads my eyes widened. If they’re the same as what I already have, I don’t want them I exclaim. He assures me they’re better, so I’m willing to give them a shot. Supposedly they don’t have a hard ridge of plastic around them and they’re a more pliable material. He demonstrates by squeezing one with his thumb.

    Of course, installation is never easy. After making several trips to his van, and swapping out pretty much every screw, they’re attached. Complaining the entire time, about time, he tells me he’ll have to come back another day to install the cable. His excuse, I can’t be in the chair. Funny, he never mentioned that before the appointment. At least it’s still running, knock on wood.

    The new arm pads suck. Slightly rounded square edges are no improvement. They remind me of the square cornered couch my grandparents had. Terribly uncomfortable, nobody sat on it. Eerily, like the plastic protected couch, my arm sticks. Whatever material this is grips, hindering what little movement I can muster and twisting my sleeve like a pretzel before catching on the corner. Too bad he wasn’t a no show like all the pca interviews this year. But then it wouldn’t be a billable opportunity I suppose.

    I’m already hashing out home modifications to improve them, because obviously I’m not getting what I want. Sculpt them like a jack-o-lantern? Duct tape on the ones from my previous chair? All options are on the table. Do you make home modifications? How do you decide what to take into your own hands?

    deann-r replied 2 years, 4 months ago 6 Members · 10 Replies
  • 10 Replies
  • lupa-f

    Member
    December 30, 2021 at 11:44 am

    I’m sorry about the armrests. I’ve not used the new chair I got 2 years ago because of the armrests. I was hoping once you got your better ones I could show my rep what to get, but guess that’s not happening. I don’t understand how Permobil doesn’t have normal padded armrests available. Everything else on the chair has 5000 options that almost nobody needs but then they design the most uncomfortable armrests ever and don’t make any other options.

    • deann-r

      Member
      December 31, 2021 at 8:47 am

      I had high hopes. I’ll keep you posted if I find a solution.

  • christina

    Member
    December 31, 2021 at 8:18 am

    I  use “Waterfall” armrest pads.  I have a permobil too, but I don’t use their armrest pads.

    • deann-r

      Member
      December 31, 2021 at 8:46 am

      If they’re not Permobile did they have trouble attaching them? Apparently that’s the hang-up.

    • lupa-f

      Member
      December 31, 2021 at 2:55 pm

      I searched all over for waterfall armrests for a Permobil chair and couldn’t find any. Do you know who makes the ones you got?

  • tammy

    Member
    December 31, 2021 at 4:47 pm

    Can they get something custom made for you? I’m not sure how it works at other places but the people I go to they have an outside source where they do all kinds of custom padding including armrests

  • rochelle-johnson

    Member
    January 4, 2022 at 2:41 pm

    I know this isn’t the most stylish fix, but I buy plushy seatbelt covers and slide them over the armrest. Some have velcro to adjust it however you need it. Right now I have a ridiculous looking animal print on one armrest, but – hey, it beats the scratched-up elbow I used to sport!

    • deann-r

      Member
      January 4, 2022 at 3:42 pm

      I like this idea. I’ll have to look into it. Thanks Rochelle.

  • dennis-turner

    Member
    January 5, 2022 at 9:18 pm

    My new chair Permobil F3 came with these gel covered armrests too squishy for me. I had them changed to the ones you had/have. I kept the gel pads in case I start having issues.

    • deann-r

      Member
      January 6, 2022 at 9:08 am

      Sounds like we could do a swap, ha ha. I keep all my old stuff too. I’m not quite sure why. My dad was always fashioning something out of my old wheelchair parts. He’s not here, so they sit in my garage.

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