SeniorsMobility is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Rollator Walker Troubleshooting: Common Walker Problems & How to Fix Them

By Maurice

rollator walker troubleshooting

With routine preventive maintenance, your rollator walker can last for years, allowing you increased mobility and safety. However, these rolling walkers don’t last forever. Sometimes, parts wear down with repetitive usage and need to be replaced. Continue reading to learn step-by-step instructions on how to fix the most common rollator problems, and how to maintain your walker to ensure its longest lifespan.

Step-by-Step Fixes for Common Rollator Walker Problems

When dealing with common rollator walker issues, it’s always good to read the manual that came with your product. You’ll find valuable instructions there to help you fix general problems.

The most common issues with rollator walkers are brakes that need adjusted and rear wheels needing replaced. Let’s look closer at each of these problem scenarios.

Adjusting Brakes on a Rollator Walker

Adjusting the brakes on a rolling walker is a straightforward process that only takes a minute or two. Regardless of the model of walker you’re using, the braking systems are all quite similar. Here are step-by-step instructions on how to loosen and tighten rollator brakes:

Loosening rollator brakes

  1. 1
    Locate the brake adjustment screw and accompanying locknut.
  2. 2
    Loosen the locknut.
  3. 3
    Loosen the adjustment screw by turning it clockwise to achieve the desired tension.
  4. 4
    Tighten the locknut.

Tightening rollator brakes

  1. 1
    Locate the brake adjustment screw and accompanying locknut.
  2. 2
    Loosen the locknut.
  3. 3
    Tighten the adjustment screw by turning it counterclockwise until the desired tension is achieved.
  4. 4
    Tighten the locknut.

Note that there are adjustment screws and accompanying locknuts at the top and bottom of the brake cable, meaning each brake has two potential adjustment options. Either are fine to use. When you adjust both ends maximally, it will be time to replace the brake cable.

Replacing the Rear Wheel on a Rollator Walker

With repeated use, the wheels on a rollator walker get worn down. When the wheels reach a point of wear, the brake pad will no longer be able to exert enough pressure on the wheel to accommodate safe braking. This means that it’s time to replace the rear wheels to restore braking capacity. Here’s how.

  1. 1
    Apply the parking brake to lock the wheel in position.
  2. 2
    Use a screwdriver to remove the hubcap.
  3. 3
    Use a 13 mm socket wrench to remove the locknut from the axel.
  4. 4
    Release the parking brake and pull the wheel off of the walker.
  5. 5
    Clean the axel and lubricate if necessary.
  6. 6
    Put the new wheel on the axle.
  7. 7
    Replace and tighten the locknut.
  8. 8
    Replace the hubcap.

Always replace both rear wheels together to ensure stability, balance, and wear. Front wheels typically last longer than the rear wheels, which take the blunt of your weight when you’re using your rollator.

Best YouTube Videos on Repairing and Maintaining Rollator Walkers

There are loads of YouTube videos that can help you to learn about maintaining and repairing your rollator walker. The following are some of the best that we’ve found.

Here’s a short video that shows you how to assemble a new rollator walker straight out of the box.

And here’s a well-produced video made by a physical therapist that explains how to adjust rollator brakes and handle grip height.

Finally, here’s a quick 2-minute video that demonstrates how to properly adjust the height of your rollator walker’s handle grip to accommodate proper posture and safety.

Tips for Maintaining Your Rollator Walker

Just like a bicycle or a car, a rollator walker needs routine maintenance to perform its best and maximize its lifespan. An improperly maintained rollator is more prone to breakdown, and can put your safety at risk. The good news is that maintaining a rollator walker is simple and requires little time. If you need assistance, be sure to read the manual that came with your rollator or call the manufacturer.

Here’s how to maintain a rollator walker:

Keep it clean.

The buildup of dirt, grime, and other contaminants can cause your walker to look unsightly, perform subpar, and wear out faster. So, just wipe down the frame, wheels, handles, and seat once a week or so with a clean cloth and soapy water. Then, rinse and dry it. Pay particular attention to the wheels.

Check the seat.

Do a weekly inspection of the seat on your rollator walker to ensure that it’s secured firmly and not split, broken, or otherwise malfunctioning. It’s always good to spot problems as they are developing and take steps to repair them. This may seem mundane but it helps to ensure your long-term safety.

Inspect the wheels.

During your weekly maintenance tasks, make sure that the wheels are spinning freely and not wearing unevenly. On flat surfaces, all four wheels should be in balance, touching the ground simultaneously. This is important as an unbalanced rollator walker can cause you serious injury.

Examine the handle grips.

The handle grips on rollator walkers are very important. They endure constant use, pressure, and wear when the walker is in use. If you notice that your handle grips are starting to lose their hold on the handle bar, then have them replaced right away. You don’t want them to slip out of place when you’re in a compromised position!

Ensure the proper handle grip height.

Stand up straight in front of your rollator walker. Relax your arms at your sides. Bend your hand upward. The handle grips should be set as close as possible to the height where your wrist creases when bent upward. This will ensure that your posture is healthy and that you’re in the optimal position for walking.

Summary

Rollator walkers are very popular and have changed so many peoples’ lives by increasing mobility, freedom, independence, and enjoyment. With regular preventative maintenance and repairs when needed, your rollator will serve you for years. It just takes a few minutes weekly to ensure that yours stays in good shape and provides safe and dependable operation.

Sources


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to Top