Treadmill buying guide

Treadmill Buying Guide
Table of Contents:
The right treadmill is the one that can help you in losing weight effectively, maintain your regular fitness routine, and provide you gym-like comfort and workout experience at your home.

This appropriate home treadmill will help you in performing workouts, whatever the weather condition is. If you are hunting for a suitable home treadmill, then we are here to provide you complete information about which things you need to consider while buying a treadmill. This article includes the features to check for when searching for a treadmill. Our buying is going to save your time and effort. 

The buying guide provided here is divided into two portions. The first section provides five basic simple treadmill shopping tips which can save your time and effort. While in part two, you will find in-depth detail of the features which helps you buy the right machine for a workout. These things include what motor is required, track size and many other crucial components. When getting enough information about the treadmill, you will be ready to check which brands are providing the best treadmill models in the market. Without any further delay, let’s dig into the detail.   

Things to consider while buying a treadmill

Part 1:

Basic guide for treadmill shopping

You must warm up before buying the new treadmill. You might think why you should warm-up? First, by doing so, you will not have to waste your time searching for the best treadmills hundreds and thousands of brands available in the market. You can narrow down the list of options and give you a clear idea of what meets your exact requirements. Secondly, the price varies from company to company. You must keep in your mind that companies play the price game. If you do not understand this thing, you will regret it later. Given below are some tips and tricks that you need to follow while buying the treadmill.

Workout area and treadmill size:

Have a look at the space in your home where you are going to put the treadmill. To save yourself from any hassle, free up some time before shopping the treadmill and measure the floor space. If you plan to buy a foldable treadmill, measure the (L x W x H) you need to keep the machine. Most of the time, companies have mentioned the treadmill’s dimensions, which helps users greatly in doing efficient shopping. We must mention here that running space that you can work out through the treadmill belt size will also influence the machine’s overall footprint. We suggest an almost 22” wide belt for runners and 20” wide for the walkers. However, a 20” belt is also suitable for runners; however, it may cause a minor error.   

Generally, at least 50” in belt length is suitable for walkers, 60” for over 6′ tall runners, and 55” for runners.   Once you find out how much space you have in your home for the treadmill, it is time to start thinking about the machine size. If we talk about a standard-sized treadmill, it is usually 7′ long and 3′ wide. Although many foldable treadmills are available in the shorter market, they still require enough space while in use.

Are you searching for a foldable treadmill: Fortunately, many foldable treadmills are available at reasonable prices. Make sure you measure the dimensions and check the specifications of the treadmill that you are going to buy. Also, measure the space that whether it is perfect according to the space of your room or not. One high-quality foldable treadmill for runners is Sole F85.

Do you spend maximum of your time at work: Then you should try a desk treadmill. They are the same as the standard treadmills, plus they also provide additional desk space and help in boosting work productivity. According to your weight, you can burn almost 80 to 180 calories per hour while working at the normal speed, which ultimately means 1440 calories every single day.

How do you like your treadmill workout: Do you love relaxed walking or intense running on the treadmill? Well, the answer to this question will help you in choosing the treadmill with the right motor. The heavier the exercise you expect from the machine, the higher power motor you need to have. We will provide in-depth detail about choosing the right motor in the second section.  The answer to the above question also helps you choose the right track size that satisfies your workout needs. Walkers can go for short treadmill tracks while the runners need more room to stretch out. 

Keep your price range in your mind

Cheap treadmills that are up to $1000 

  • Under $500

Treadmills under $500 are low-end, so there are lots of caution when you are thinking of proceeding with it. In such treadmills, the warranties may expire after 90 days. These treadmills are suitable for occasional usage; however, they may break down early or within a few months if you start using them regularly. Common disadvantages include noisy belts, small workout areas, less workout programming, wobbly frames, and flickering data screens. 

  • Under $800 

Treadmills that lie in this price range have mostly received good reviews from users. They can stay with you for almost a year. But with this price, it is quite difficult to provide high-quality features. Generally, shoppers are confused between the durability and attractive features of the treadmill. For instance, you may get a manual incline in this machine but not a power incline. Likewise, you can have a heart rate monitor but not a perfect wireless pulse reader. 

  • Under $1000

If you are ready to spend $1000 at the treadmill sale, there are chances that you will catch a good fish. Some of the machines with this price range contain parts that come with years of warranty. The best machines contain powerful motors, effective inclines, and full tracks. If we talk about display, then classic LCD monitors are the most common ones in the treadmills that come in the price range of $1000. However, sometimes the 7 inches touch screen is also available. These treadmills also feature a speaker having an AUX port for you to listen to music or podcast during a workout and are sometimes also suitable with wireless heart rate transmitters.    

Better treadmills that are up to $1000 +

  • Under $1500

Best treadmills for walkers and runners fall under the price of around $1999 and above. However, you can also order the one having a $1500 price range during the sale. As compared to $1000 treadmills, these are easy and comfortable to operate. You will also find some amazing features in these machines, like large touch screens, power inclines, and improved workout options. Sometimes you may also get wireless chest straps as well. 

  • Under $2000

Treadmills within this price range are excellent for everyday use. They provide outstanding performance and all comfort you expect from a health club treadmills. This is highly suitable for the intense runners and for places where more than one trainee is present. Some low-cost machines may seem similar to many users; however, they may not perform well comparatively. These treadmills contain better quality and maintenance-free belts, unlike other belts that may require occasional waxing. You may also find better cushioning system in these treadmills, which aids greatly in providing extreme comfort and endurance.  

  • $2000 and above     

Premium quality treadmills are usually sold at above $2000 and full price reaching almost $3500 or above. In this category, you will get high-speed treadmills for marathon runners, incline trainer treadmills, and all-around luxury treadmills for regular exercise at very high speed. They carry very long residential and also light commercial warranties. The highlighting feature varies from brand to brand and model to model. The common attributes in these top-notch treadmills are:

  • Web-enabled touch screens.
  • Shock absorption.
  • Supersound.
  • High maximum speed.
  • Extra-large monitors.
  • Integrated televisions.
  • Fitness tests in addition to the usual workouts.

The best-priced versions also contain maintenance-free tracks.

Different models may contain the same price but different features. It varies according to the company and model. 

Decide which feature is crucial for you

Some treadmills contain additional and essential features. Although these features are not crucial for cardio training, they can boost your overall workout experience and motivate you. For example, preset workout programs, TVs, and Bluetooth speakers. You need to check which treadmill ad-on will benefit you, meet your fitness goals, and remain unused. Analyzing fruitful features for your workout session will help greatly in choosing the right treadmill for you.

Some most important features that a shopper must consider are:

Automated incline:

Treadmills with automatic incline make your exercising experience interesting. With this, you will have basically three practical benefits. First, they make exercise easy for your joints, secondly burn your calories fastly, and lastly, they promote better muscle definition.  You might wonder how much incline you need to burn maximum calories. Well, most of the machines contain incline of 10, 15 and 20%. While the incline trainer treadmills consist of a maximum incline of 40%, which helps in burning the calories quickly by simply walking.  

Workout programs:

Nowadays, most home treadmills contain built-in programs that manage the incline and speed. We must mention that cheap treadmills only operate in manual mode, and the menu may vary in size and variety. So before spending extra money on the guidance, make sure you properly utilize this additional workout guidance available on the treadmill. 

Along with the preset workout options, you can also choose additional workout technology in many models. Given below are some options that you may receive with your purchase.

  • iFit 

By using the monthly membership of iFit, you can get an unlimited customized workout. This membership may come free in many treadmills of different brands. Furthermore, by approaching the multiple workout videos provided by professional trainers directly from fitness studios, the iFit Google Maps app help you draw any route on Google maps and virtually get a fantastic experience. You will also experience the rise and fall of the terrain as the machine incline/decline responds to it. Some brands that are currently offering iFit are HealthRider, NordicTrack, and ProForm.

  • Passport Virtual Active 

These programs are provided through interactive videos. A passport player operates with your home TV to connect you in a scenic setting with an ambient sound; with the changing speed of your workout, the audio and video change accordingly. This feature is accessible in most of the treadmills provided by Vision Fitness and Horizon Fitness.

  • Wireless pulse monitors 

This feature provides accurate heart rate data and ultimately helps in performing the better exercise. Wireless heart rate monitors also give heart rate control; the built-in workout programs help stay within your targeted heart rate zone. 

Treadmill Accessories  

Most of the brands now enable the user to personalize their purchase. This is because every customer has different fitness goals, so the unique accessories may help reach these goals quickly. Just a few additional features can make things easy for you.

  • Treadmill Mats:

 If you want your treadmill and the flooring below to stay with you for a longer time, then use the treadmill mat. They also benefit in cleaning the floor around the treadmill and minimizing the noise created by the machine’s vibration.

  • Cleaning material:

Every one of us wants the treadmill to last longer. One way to ensure this is by using the proper cleaning material, including brushes and cleaning solutions according to your treadmill. It is best to wait for the owner’s manual so that you can buy the appropriate material respectively. 

  • Entertainment accessories:

It is possible that you already have a treadmill and now just want to update it with the latest technologies. Like you want to add a tablet holder so that you can enjoy watching movies or music while performing the workout. You can also add the reading rack where you can hold the books, magazines, or any other things you want. Furthermore, you can also insert a TV stand in front of you.

Some other important features that you need to consider are workout fans, tablet/ computer holders, on/off cushioning, touch screens, water bottle holders, and HD TV.

Check the previous treadmill reviews

We always recommend our users try the treadmill before making a purchase. You can try multiple treadmills in some good stores like Sears. However, you should also check it online. This is because most of the time best deals, discounts, treadmill delivery, sales tax are available online. 

If it is not possible for you to physically check the treadmill, it is better to check its reviews and then purchase. 

Part 2:

Understand the crucial features of the treadmill

Treadmills come with a variety of features and specifications. Whether these features are suitable for you or not? You can get better elsewhere as every manufacturer makes sure that their treadmills sound pretty well. In this section, we have provided all elements that you need to check before buying a treadmill.


Treadmill power is mostly described in horsepower (HP) and continuous horsepower (CHP). CHP is the most important thing to consider while buying an exercise machine as it describes how much power a motor will output continuously at its peak. Most of the home treadmills contain the motor that lies between the 2.25 and 4.25 CHP. You may also find some treadmills between 1.5 CHP or 5.0 CHP motors; however, they are very less in amount. 

The question is, how much treadmill power should you use? This thing totally depends on the type of exercise you are planning to do and your body weight. For example, if your body weighs almost 200 pounds, then for walking, select 2.0 CHP, running 3.0 CHP, and jogging 2.5 CHP. 

On the other side, if your weight is higher than 200 pounds, it is better to add 0.5 CHP. This is because a motor running at full speed will wear out soon than one having the power to spare. Nowadays, most treadmills contain a lifetime warranty. However, some cheaper treadmills may come with a short motor warranty. So, it is better to check how much warranty the manufacturer is offering for the motor.  

Belt durability:     

Three main factors that influence the durability of the belt are metal rollers, thickness, and lubrication. 

If we talk about the belt thickness, the four-ply or two-ply belt is more durable than a single-layer belt. Thick belts also create less noise during the workout. Most of the home or cheap treadmills contain a one-ply treadmill. Some companies may not mention the specification of the treadmill, but you must check it.  

Track size: 

If you are a petite walker, then track length is not important to consider. However, it is crucial for those who take long strides or for runners. The standard treadmill track contains a length of almost 55” for walking machines and 58” or 60” for running treadmills. Some treadmills for runners may also contain tracks up to 63” long. For this long treadmill, you can check the BodyCraft and Landice brands. 

If we talk about the track width, then according to standard, it is almost 20”. Extra-wide treadmills are also becoming common these days and are suitable for large trainees. These tracks are usually 22” inches wide. 


If you want to get quick fitness results, then make use of the treadmill’s incline feature. It also helps significantly in reducing the stress on joints, and you can also target the muscle group. Most of the treadmills can incline up to 10, 15, or 20%. Few companies provide small incline in their treadmills too. Most of the treadmills contain automatic inclines; only the cheapest treadmills come with manual incline adjustment.


The track cushioning is highly advantageous in protecting the joints during intense exercise. It can reduce the impact on your joints to almost 15-40%. This feature is highly important for runners; it can minimize injury risk and boost stamina level. Some machines are also equipped with adjustable cushioning so that users can choose according to their comfort and support level. Modern treadmills contain different cushioning, where you can get additional support as you push off the track and more comfort on landing.

Track speed:

Treadmills that support the speed of almost 10 mph are suitable for the trainers. However, runners may need a machine with a higher level of speed. Home treadmills having speeds up to 12 mph are available at the price range of almost $1000, like Nordic Track C 990. 


Nowadays, most treadmills contain preset workout programs. These programs are highly beneficial for weight loss and endurance training. Programs are able to automatically control the speed of the machine and sometimes incline/decline as well. 

Multiple workout technologies are integrated into home treadmills. One famous is iFit that is present in the treadmills of the HealthRider, NordicTrack, and ProForm. These preset come with a whole package of benefits, but it is famous due to its interactive Google Maps workouts. Another amazing one is Passport Virtual Active technology that is compatible with Vision Fitness and Horizon Fitness. In this scenic Virtual Active treadmill, workouts are shown on the TV and can automatically adjust the speed.

 Additional features:  

Some additional features that you need to look at in the treadmills are Bluetooth speakers, water bottle holders, tablet holders, and TVs. These may cost extra money, but if they motivate you during a workout, why not. 


If you want to check the durability of the treadmill, then look for its warranty. The treadmill includes four components named labor, frame, parts, and motor most of the time in warranty.

  • Parts: Most of the variations in treadmills include electronics and parts. Generally, a cheap treadmill has no or only 90 days of warranty. Slightly better treadmills offer a warranty of one year. The best and high-quality treadmills come with a warranty of almost five years. Landice treadmill machine contains lifetime warranty. 
  • Frame: Most of the treadmills contain frames that come with a lifetime warranty.
  • Labor: This feature is not included in the cheap treadmills. Other mostly include one or two years of free labor. The quality of labor may vary from machine to machine. 


Some treadmills contain motors with lifetime guarantees. Cheaper treadmills may contain motor with 20-25 years of guarantee. Make sure you check the latest sales and discounts available before purchasing.

Storage and portability:

 It is now possible to access foldable treadmills in almost every price range. By using the foldable feature, you can fold the deck upward and free up the space on your floor. Power-assist technology that is added in few treadmills makes this process easy for you by saving your physical strength.

Some small treadmills are portable. They may contain wheels that make easy movement possible. It is easy to store the portable treadmill under the bed, behind the door, or keep it in your closet. 

Weight capacity:

Weight capacities of the treadmills usually vary between 250 to 400 pounds. We recommend our users buy a treadmill that is 50 pounds more in weight than bodyweight to make sure that you don’t strain the motor. If you weigh higher than this, it is better to go for the high-end machine. Some treadmills are available in the market that can handle up to 500 pounds.


You must look for an auto-stop feature in your treadmill if you are likely to get an injury or are elder. It is also suitable for trainees having children or dogs. Auto-stop is usually handled by the key. The key is attached to your body, and if you slip, the treadmill will automatically stop. The key can be removed after every training session to avoid accidental treadmill activation.


We hope this guide helps you in finding the one appropriate treadmill which satisfies all of your needs. First, it is important to keep your needs and requirements in mind, then choose a treadmill that provides the best combination of features, warranties, and components. 


What should I check when purchasing a treadmill?

You need to check important factors while buying a treadmill: space, budget, and your workout needs. If you have less space, then you should go for the small-sized deck and foldable treadmill. The buyer should also keep a check on weight capacity, incline/decline feature, motor capacity, deck cushioning, and workout programs as well.

What are the best treadmill brands? 

Some of the most popular treadmill brands in the market are ProFoam, Sole, Horizon, and NordicTrack. You can check about each of these brands on the internet and also the treadmills that they are providing. 

How much does a good treadmill cost?

Treadmill prices vary according to the quality and features they contain. Usually, the price range is between $500 – $2000+. The most highly rated and popular treadmills are priced at $1500+. You can also get good and excellent deals during sales, so you should keep your eye on discounts as well. 

How do I choose the treadmill for my home?

While choosing the treadmill for your home, you need to check the three things. Performance (incline, speed, horsepower, etc.) features, and comfort.

Do treadmills consume lots of electricity?

Treadmills are becoming common nowadays, but they also consume a high amount of energy. On average, a treadmill uses energy between 600 to 700 watts. As the treadmill gets older, it starts consuming 30% more energy than at a younger age. This thing also varies according to the treadmill you are using.   

Treadmill buying guide
Treadmill buying guide

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