Best Treadmill Buys for 2013
Shopping for the best treadmill requires looking at a variety of different features and considerations. For some people, cost is the deciding factor while others can choose the best features regardless of price. Comparing hundreds of models is daunting, so we’ve put together what we feel are the best treadmill buys for 2013 in four different categories.
Best Folding Treadmill 2013
After its recent update, the Smooth 5.65 folding treadmill has gotten even better. They gave it a longer running surface, new cushioning system, more programs, and extended the warranty. All this, and they held down the price on this model at last year's level! The Smooth 5.65 features a silent 2.5 HP continuous duty motor with an advanced Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) circuit board. It has 2" rollers for the belt, a lower step-up height, and a 20" x 60" running surface that is significantly more roomy than the 20" x 50" tread belt on the previous year's model. This is an impressive machine with an expanded warranty of 4 years on all parts and 2 years for in-home service. It is super quiet, has a large walking area, excellent cushioning, a stylish profile, and a cool-running motor. The upgrades and generous warranty prove that Smooth is serious about this model challenging the Sole F63 and the Livestrong 10.0 to see which treadmill will be the Big Dog at this price range. The Smooth 5.65 treadmill rates a Best Buy.
Runners Up: Sole F63, Livestrong LS10.0 and Yowza Osprey.
Best Overall Value 2013
Value takes a lot into consideration, so we ended up with two winners in this category. One because it was a great folding treadmill, the other because it was a great all-around model.
The Sole F80 delivers more than any other folding treadmill you’ll find. You get the true feel of a commercial machine with the F80, one of the best folding treadmills you can get for around $1,500. The 3.5 horsepower motor is more than enough power, and this treadmill has more incline variety than others at this price – up to 15%. The lifetime warranty on the frame and motor with 3 years on the deck and electronics is better than any other warranty at this price point. Why so generous? Excellent construction and the best treadmill parts. It’s also the most stable folding treadmill you can find thanks to a patented deck and frame design.
The Smooth 9.35 HR is the best selling treadmill model that Smooth Fitness has to offer, and for good reason. The Smooth Hydra Suspension adjustable shock absorption system reduces impact on the joints and cushions your walk or run for a great feel and less fatigue. We love the full 3.0 horsepower motor, which has a lifetime warranty. The parts and electronics are covered for a full five years, which indicates the quality of the components. The commercial grade deck is triple laminated for a lifetime of use. For $2,950 the Smooth 9.35 HR treadmill is a genuine runner’s machine, but on sale (you can often find it for less than $2,000) it’s a steal.
Runners Up: Livestrong LS13.0T and Yowza Smyrna.
Best Budget-Priced Treadmill for Walking 2013
The entry model Livestrong LS8.0T treadmill is powered by a 2.5 CHP motor that is backed by a lifetime warranty, and has a number of other exciting features including a power incline, interactive programming, and a roomy 20" x 55" treadbelt. The reviews on the Livestrong LS8.0T are very impressive. Users love the quality and that it takes only 30 minutes to assemble. The drive system is quiet, the console is easy to use, and the overall design is quite aesthetic. Another plus, the warranty is very good for a $799 entry-level treadmill: 2 years on the parts and a year of service, plus lifetime coverage on the motor. This treadmill is best for users under 250 pounds who don’t do much running.
Best Treadmill for Pros/Heavy Runners 2013
For the serious runner who is looking for the best treadmill to challenge and last for years, it’s the Landice L700 ProSports Trainer. Quite simply, you can’t find a better treadmill. It’s pricey ($4,000), but worth the investment for individuals who want true luxury in a treadmill. Landice has perfected performance and comfort by manufacturing nothing but the best treadmills around – no ellipticals, no weight machines, no steppers. The result is the L700's extra-long walking area, 4-ply deck (usually only found on commercial treadmills), 1” thick deck and patented shock absorption system. The aircraft quality aluminum frame and fabulous warranty makes the Landice L700 a dream machine for the serious athlete.
Runner Up: Life Fitness Club Series
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