Workout Equipment

The 5 Best Folding Treadmills – [2020 Reviews & Guide]

Home treadmills have been around for a while. Now women who want to workout in the comfort of their own home but don’t want the treadmill taking up space all the time can now buy a foldable treadmill.

There is a wide variety of treadmills which can range from the $100’s to the $1000’s. They come with various features, some with just the basics and others that are gym quality.

We have reviewed the top foldable treadmills so you can decide which one is best for your exercise needs.

Best Folding Treadmills

 ASUNA Space Saving Folding TreadmillGYMAX Electric Folding TreadmillMerax Folding Electric Running Treadmill
editorschoice
Speed:0.6 - 8 MPH0.5 - 5 MPH0.5 - 8 MPH
Capacity:220 Pounds220 Pounds300 Pounds
Incline:NoneNone3 Levels, Manual
Display:YesYesNo, Uses Smart Device

Quick Answer: The 5 Best Rated Folding Treadmills For 2020

  1. ASUNA Space Saving Folding Treadmill
  2. GYMAX Electric Folding Treadmill
  3. Sunny Health & Fitness Motorized Walking Treadmill
  4. 3G Cardio Pro Runner Treadmill
  5. Merax Folding Electric Running Treadmill

We’ve reviewed the top-rated folding treadmills, followed by a comparison table and buying guide to help you decide on the treadmill that will work best for you.


Folding Home Treadmill Reviews

With its many features and quality build, the ASUNA is our Editors Choice for best folding treadmill. This foldable treadmill easily competes with more expensive models.

It’s sturdy but light enough to move out of the way for those times you have company over.

As far as treadmills go this runs smooth and quietly. Its quality built but the handrails and deck are narrower than a gym-grade treadmills, so this wouldn’t be a good option for a heavyset woman.

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The ASUNA is more apt for a woman who plans to walk at a moderate or fast pace. It feels less powerful than some of its competitors, but you have to take price into account when comparing and we still feel this is a good value.

It just depends on how you plan to use your treadmill. Runners should definitely look for a machine with a wider belt and longer deck.

Speed and incline controls are located on both the handrails and on the console which is an added convenience. We should note the incline on this machine is automatic, meaning no reason to jump off in the middle of a workout to adjust the height.

The display is a backlit LCD and keeps track of your time working out and all the other standard stats such as pace, distance, and heart rate. Bluetooth control is located on the console with the other controls. The built-in speakers are adequate but not exceptional.

One thing we find a bit unnerving is a beeping noise that’s activated when the treadmill is turned on and by every button you touch- adjusting incline, speed, etc.

I would have liked to see a drink holder so you can hydrated during your workout. It also comes with a shelf for propping up your tablet or smartphone.

 

ASUNA Space Saving Folding Treadmill at a Glance:

  • Built-in Speakers
  • Backlit LCD Display
  • Bluetooth
  • 9 Pre-set Programs
  • Speed 0. 6mph to 8mph

The GYMAX Electric Folding Treadmill is designed to be everything you need in a treadmill when you need it, and be out of sight when you don’t.

You have all the basic functions you need in a treadmill with speeds ranging from 0.5 to 5 mph, a convenient media stand for your phone or tablet, and a quiet but powerful 450W motor.

What you don’t get is a large machine to find room for, a loud machine you can’t use when your family or neighbors are sleeping, or a big price tag.

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Perfect for everything from a slow walk to a quick run, the shockproof design helps to minimize the sound and also reduce the impact on your joints.

The LCD display is easy to use and you can very quickly see your elapsed time, distance, and calories burned.

A safety clip with key ensures that if you lose your footing, need to leave the machine quickly, or there is some other emergency, that the treadmill belt stops immediately.

This is one of the slimmest machines we’ve reviewed and we didn’t expect much from a machine weighing just 61 pounds. However, it far surpassed others we tested. Even with the max weight capacity of 220 pounds.

GYMAX has put a lot of technical thought into how this machine folds down and how it can be moved and stored. Not only can it be slid under your bed easily, but it might even be able to fit under your couch. When folded and laying down, it’s just 5″ high.

If you need a quiet treadmill that can be out of the way and out of sight when you need it to be, this option from GYMAX should top your list.

 

GYMAX Electric Folding Treadmill at a Glance:

  • Speeds Ranging from 0.5 to 5 MPH
  • LCD Display
  • Shockproof
  • Tablet/Phone Stand
  • Safety Key w/ Clip
  • 220 Pound Weight Capacity
  • Extremely Compacr When Folded

The Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill is an affordable, quality home treadmill that comes with all the standard features someone would need to keep from getting bored with daily use.

Its smaller footprint takes up less room than your standard-sized treadmill. This foldable treadmill is designed to do a job and it does it well, for the price. Don’t expect lots of bells and whistles, though.

It does have the standard functions you would expect along with an LCD display and even a time countdown feature that can be paused and restarted as needed.

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It’s a good choice for someone who plans to jump on for 30 minutes a day and get in some power walking, or as a substitute for being outside when the weather is bad.

Hard core runners should look at something a little heftier. This particular Sunny Health & Fitness model is designed mostly for walking, even power walkers. But running? Not so much.

The machine offers a generous walking space of 14″ W x 39″ L. For walking, this is plenty of space to be comfortable.

The Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill has your basic console with LCD display that includes elapsed time, distanced walked, current speed, and calories burned. You can leave the display on one stat or have it scan slowly through all of them.

TA 1.25 HP peak DC motor is plenty strong enough for walkers up to 5 MPH. Designed for durability and a long life, this motor might not be the quietest one available, but you’re getting your money’s worth.

An Integrated Shock Absorption System helps to keep the bouncing to a minimum. This is especially necessary for those who live in upstairs apartments or in multilevel homes. It also helps to reduce some of the impact on your joints.

This foldable walking treadmill weighs just 70 pounds and with the built-in transportation wheels, you can very easily get it out of the way. Stand it up in a closet or slide it under the bed, there’s no shortage of places to tuck away your treadmill.

If you’re looking for a simple treadmill to keep you moving even while you’re at home, Sunny Health & Fitness has some great choices. This one, the Motorized Walking Treadmill, happens to be our favorite.

 

Sunny Health & Fitness Motorized Walking Treadmill at a Glance:

  • Countdown Feature w/ Start and Pause
  • LCD Display
  • 220 Pound Weight Capacity
  • 0.5 to 5 MPH
  • Integrated Shock Absorption System
  • Durable Steel Construction
  • 1.25 Peak HP Motor

The 3G Cardio Pro Runner Treadmill is a model closer to the ones you see in your local gym. Hefty and reliable, this folding treadmill comes with lots of perks that the lower-cost versions don’t offer.

The controls are simple and intuitive. The machine runs quietly, as far as treadmills go.

In spite of its bulky construction, it’s easy to roll and move when folded up, but this is not going to be easily stored.

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Even when folded up, it takes up quite a bit of space. It’ll be easier to get around your workout area, but this monster will still require sufficient storage area- perhaps a corner of your room.

For the price, this machine has settings which are more aligned with a basic model. They include weight, height, and starting speed.

The manufacturer could do an easy fix to make it more helpful- a save function so you don’t have to reenter this information each time.

While this machine is sturdy and solidly built, its not quite on par with a gym-grade treadmill. The machine responds quickly in terms of the speed and incline and does so smoothly, meaning that it’s a smooth transition from a walking stride up to a full run.

There are also pre-set programs and the adjustment from one speed to another is smooth. Once up into the higher speeds there was some squeaking. Still, we didn’t see this as affecting its overall ability to provide a challenging workout.

Unlike some of the smaller treadmills, this one’s length and width allow for a full range of motion. This is true for a woman of average height. We have some concerns that it may be too short for an exceptionally tall woman.

The belt is wide enough that you won’t feel the need to constantly look down to ensure you are staying on the right track. This treadmill feels sturdy and supportive under your stride.

The cup holder sits at an angle which prevents you from using an open-mouthed cup. For those who like to enjoy reading material during their workout, you should be aware this model does not have a shelf to hold a tablet or magazine.

We question the accuracy of the wireless heart rate monitor; however, the built-in heart rate monitors do respond after you place your hands on them  for an extended period of time.

It takes a moment for the monitor to catch up and will initially show your heart rate at 80. This could be frustrating if you want an accurate read right away.

The built-in fan is a nice accessory and you’re able to adjust it up and down depending on your height and where you are positioned on the machine.

Additionally, it has two speeds. If you’re expecting a brisk breeze, you won’t find it here but is you want the best small treadmill, the 3G Pro Runner is a good choice!

 

3G Cardio Pro Runner Treadmill at a Glance:

  • 8 Pre-set Programs
  • Pulse Monitor
  • Fitness Tests Included
  • 2-Speed Built-in Fan
  • Up to 12 MPH
  • Up to 15% Electric Incline

The Merax Folding Electric Running Treadmill is a sturdy option amongst the many options on the market. And it has more of those extra options you want in a folding treadmill but didn’t think you could afford.

The available running space on this Merax treadmill is more than generous. Even for the most hardcore runner, you’ll have plenty of room to run without tripping on anything, or tripping over yourself.

A device deck easily manages your phone or tablet. You’ll need that device deck because your treadmill will connect to it through Bluetooth and the FitShow Sports App.

This app will help you manage your workouts and your health with personalized recommendations and feedback.

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The easy lift feature makes lifting up the tread deck simple. You’ll have a little help doing it, and then just lock it in place. The adjustments for the three levels of include are manual but assisted in a similar way.

With a quiet but powerful motor, feel free to take your run in the living room during nap time or even after they’ve gone to bed for the night. Live in an apartment? Your neighbors probably won’t hear you either.

Fifteen programs are already set up and ready to go. Hit a button and you’re off and running with choices that range from an easy, breezy walk in the park to a challenging run, wherever you happen to be in your home.

When folded, this treadmill measures approximately 2′ x 3′ x 4′. Transport wheels mean you can wheel it out of the way when you’re done and bring it back out again when you’re yearning for a run.

While your FitShow Sports app is tracking everything about your workout, why not listen to some tunes through the built-in sound system?

You can’t get much better if you’re looking for a folding treadmill with all the bells and whistles without spending thousands of dollars. In fact, with the Merax Folding Electric Running Treadmill, you really don’t need to!

 

Merax Folding Electric Running Treadmill at a Glance:

  • Integrated w/ the FitShow Sports App
  • Device Deck
  • Built-In Sound System
  • Quiet and Powerful
  • Plenty of Running Space
  • 15 Preprogrammed Walks or Runs
  • 3 Manual Incline Settings

Foldable Treadmill Comparison Table

Folding Treadmill Speed (MPH)Incline / LevelWeight CapacityDisplayRating
ASUNA Space Saving Folding Treadmill0.6 - 8None220 lbsYes4.0 / 5.0
GYMAX Electric Folding Treadmill0.5 - 5None220 lbsYes4.3 / 5.0
Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill0.5 - 5None220 lbsYes4.2 / 5.0
3G Cardio Pro Runner Treadmill0.5 – 12Yes, 15% 350 lbsYes3.9 / 5.0
Merax Folding Electric Running Treadmill0.6 - 8Yes, 3 Levels300 lbsNo, Uses Your Smart Device4.0 / 5.0

How to Choose the Best Folding Treadmill

Selecting the right foldable treadmill will depend on several factors. Check out our list below before committing to one model versus another.

best foldable treadmill

Fitness Goals

What are your fitness goals? Are you just trying to get more steps to reach your daily FitBit goal, are you planning to power walk to get some light cardio in every day, or are you a passionate runner? You will need to consider these things in deciding on a model.

If you are just trying to get in your steps or even hoping to get your heart rate up through power walking, a lightweight and more compact foldable treadmill should do the trick.

If you want a treadmill that can handle a regular pounding from a daily run, you will need to look for a model that has a longer deck, a wider belt and a stronger motor.

Other Users

Before making a decision, don’t forget you may not be the only one in the family interested in jumping on the treadmill. Perhaps you plan only light running, but your husband is training for his next 5K. A smaller, narrower machine may fit your needs in this case, but it won’t work out for him.

Not only do you need to consider what others’ workout goals are, you need to consider everyone’s size and weight as well. Each machine has a maximum weight limit that you should check before taking the plunge of purchasing a treadmill.

Some treadmills are compact because they are designed to be folded and stored. These tend to be narrower than standard-sized treadmills and will be uncomfortable for a larger person.

Size and Power

In terms of deck length, if you plan to run on your treadmill you need 55 inches or longer. This is especially true for the tall runner. In terms of belt width, a runner should go for a 22 inch width to ensure you don’t inadvertently run off that size. A narrow belt could pose a safety risk in this instance.

For those who plan to use their treadmill primarily for walking, you can get away with 16-22 inches. Anything less than 16 inches could be dangerous and we don’t recommend it.

When selecting a home treadmill you must also consider the power of its motor.  For light jogging and walking, a 1.75 to 2.0 horsepower motor should be fine. For those who run harder, 2.5 horsepower is the minimum recommended.

Speed and Incline

EFITMENT Auto Incline Bluetooth Motorized Treadmill
EFITMENT Auto Incline Bluetooth Motorized Treadmill

Do you want the added challenge of walking uphill or is walking along a flat surface as much effort as you want to put in? If a flat surface is fine for you, don’t bother investing in a machine with the ability to change the incline.

On the other hand, if you want to challenge yourself with a simulated uphill run, you’ll need to look out for an incline function. The incline may be manual or automatic.

If you purchase one with manual adjustment, this will require you to stop and get off the machine to change it. If you want the smooth transition from one level to another, you definitely will need an auto incline function.

Features

Foldable Electric Treadmill Features
Sole Fitness F85 Folding Treadmill

Nowadays even the basic treadmills display time, distance, speed, heart rate and calories burned. That doesn’t mean the quality of these features is the same.

For example, some do a better job at accurately calculating calories and monitoring heart rate.  Some machines will individually calculate calories burned based on entering your weight. The more basic models will provide an overall estimate, which is less personalized.

What are other things that may be important to you?  What will help you take your workout more seriously? If you plan to power walk while watching your favorite Netflix show on your tablet, make sure the machine includes a shelf to hold it.

Do you love a breeze on your face as you run?  Keep your eyes peeled for a built-in fan. If you enjoy music, some treadmills come with bluetooth technology.

There is a wide range of features, from basic to fancy, so do some thinking about what’s important to you before settling on a foldable treadmill.

Size and Storage

We assume if you are looking for a foldable treadmill that space is a concern. Perhaps you don’t want a behemoth treadmill displayed as the focal point in your bedroom. Just because a treadmill is foldable doesn’t mean it will be easily stored.

Check out the dimensions before making your decision. Some get tiny enough to fit into a closet or under a bed that’s high off the ground. On the flip side, some are so bulky you won’t be able to move them from one room to another.

In conclusion, the perfect treadmill is out there for everyone. It just takes some time doing a little research before settling on one.

One last thing worth considering before wrapping up – treadmill manufacturers often provide warranties on their machines, and warranties may vary for different parts of the treadmill.

We recommend you check those out first, because a robust warranty can tell you a lot about the manufacturer’s faith in their product. Happy hunting for the perfect foldable home treadmill!

ANCHEER Folding Electric Treadmills
ANCHEER Folding Electric Treadmills

FAQs About Folding Treadmills

A folding treadmill can be a complicated piece of exercise equipment, as most electrical ones are. It is important to have your questions answered before making a purchase. We’ve seen a lot of the same questions from consumers and you may have those same questions yourself.

Q: How much horsepower does a folding treadmill need to have?

Most newer treadmill models are rated with CHP, or continuous horsepower, instead of HP, or horsepower. HP measures the energy output of the treadmill at its highest which tells you only what it is capable of when pushed to its limit and only for a short time. A CHP rating tells you how much horsepower the treadmill can put out continuously, without exceeding the limits of normal use.

If you only plan on using the folding treadmill for walking, or perhaps a slow jog, 2.0 CPH is enough. Faster jogging or slow runs require a CPH of 2.5. For those that run, or plan to in the future, you need to look for a treadmill with a CHP of at least 3.0.

Q: What are the common sizes of a folding treadmill deck?

The deck, or running surface, can vary slightly from the most common size of 20” x 55” depending on the quality and needs of the user. If you are tall or run fast, you may want to look for a deck length of 60” or maybe even 62”.

Some decks can be shorter, as short as 50”, but while this may make storage easier, it can make walking more difficult. While 20” is the most common deck width, you may be able to find one with a width of 22”. Anything 18” or less gives you less room to run since you will likely move left and right slightly during exercise but it can be beneficial if you don’t have a lot of room.

Q: What safety features are built in to folding treadmills?

While some folding treadmills may have more safety features built into them, there are two that are absolutely vital. The first one is a lock to keep the deck from falling once it is folded up. If the deck were to fall, not only would it most likely cause damage to the machine, but it can injure you as well.

The second is a safety key which would need to be inserted into the treadmill for it to power on and operate. This keeps anyone, especially children, from accidentally turning it on and hurting themselves when the belt starts turning.

Q: Why do I need a folding treadmill?

The biggest reason why consumers opt for a folding treadmill instead of a traditional one is space. With a deck that tips up, it takes up less space in your home and can be moved much more easily if you need it out of the way. Some folding treadmills can get small enough to fit upright in a closet or lay flat under a bed.

However, this is not common and you will still most likely need a corner of your living space to store it. Being able to fold up the deck when not in use, however, saves quite a bit of space when it isn’t in use.

Q: Is it easy to move a folding treadmill?

Some folding treadmills are also equipped with wheels so that when the deck is folded up, it can be moved out of the way. If you will need to bring out the treadmill to use it and then move it back out of the way, finding one with wheels is ideal. Those without wheels can be a bit more difficult to move but if it will be staying in one place even when folded, then wheels aren’t necessary.

Q: Should I get a folding treadmill or a non-folding treadmill?

There are benefits and drawbacks to both. Many people find that a folding treadmill takes up much less space in their home and is much more affordable for them. However, non-folding treadmills can sometimes offer many more features.

If you’d like to look at some of the best non-folding treadmills, we’ve reviewed those as well. It may help to compare the differences between them to see just which type of treadmill would be most appropriate in your home.

3G Cardio Pro Runner Folding Treadmill

Tips for Choosing a Folding Treadmill

Need to know how to choose the best folding treadmill for your needs? We have some tips that might make choosing the perfect one a little easier for you.

Tip #1: Look at the Warranty

If the warranty on either parts or labor, or even both, is 30 days or less, then it’s safe to say the manufacturer is not willing to stand by their product. The very minimum length of time for a warranty on a folding treadmill should be 90 days but 1-5 years is ideal. This tells you the manufacture will back their brand for a while because they know they offer quality.

Tip #2: Invest for the Future

Perhaps you might only use your treadmill for slow walks at first, but do you have plans to eventually start running? If that’s the case, you want to choose a folding treadmill that can handle faster running later on, once you get to that point. No one likes to have to make an additional purchase because they outgrow their first choice. You can save quite a bit of money by getting the right equipment for your future needs.

Tip #3: Consider the Weight Capacity

If the weight capacity of the machine is reached every time it is used, you can expect the treadmill to wear out much more quickly. Ideally, if the weight capacity is 300 pounds, the primary user should only be 275 pounds, or even 250 pounds. You always want to find a folding treadmill with a maximum weight capacity that is higher than your current weight to keep it from wearing out very fast. This means you may have to invest in a treadmill that is heavier duty.

Tip #4: Lubricate the Belt

Whether you use a water-based lubricant, a 100% silicone lubricant, or a special formula offered by the manufacturer, it needs to be lubricated regularly. The type of lubricant you use will be determined by the manufacturer. You may only need to apply lubricant when the belt starts getting loud or the manufacturer may recommend it be done at regular intervals to keep it running smoothly. Be sure to read the user’s manual or contact the manufacturer to find out what lubricant to use and how often.

Tip #5: Choose a Treadmill with Incline Options

Adding an incline to any treadmill exercise, whether it is a slow walk or a fast run, can help to make the time you spend on the treadmill more efficient and can also help to work out different muscle groups.

Inclines are used quite often during HIIT, or high-intensity interval training, so if this is something you want to try then choosing a treadmill with an incline is important. Some inclines are added manually by lifting up the front of the deck and locking it into place and others are automated with a motor. Don’t forget a pair of running shoes for your treadmill.

Notice:

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