Workout Equipment

The 5 Best Folding Treadmills – [Reviews & Guide 2019]

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

 EFITMENT Motorized TreadmillSole Fitness F85 Folding TreadmillSunny Health & Fitness Treadmill
editorschoice
Speed:0.5 - 9 MPH0.5 - 12 MPH0.5 - 10 MPH
Weight Capacity:220 lbs400 lbs220 lbs
Incline Range:0 - 9.8%0 - 15%0 - 4.4%
Pulse Monitor:YesYesNo

For more of my recommendations, have a look through these popular Women’s Workout guide links: Home Elliptical Machines, Home Gyms, Rowing Machines.

Quick Answer: The 5 Best Rated Folding Treadmills For 2019

  1. EFITMENT Auto Incline Motorized Treadmill
  2. Sole Fitness F85 Folding Treadmill
  3. Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill
  4. 3G Cardio Pro Runner Treadmill
  5. ANCHEER Folding Electric 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 EFITMENT 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 EFITMENT 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. So while walking or running on this machine flows, the beeping may get under your skin.

Other features include two cup holders so you can stay nice and hydrated during your workout! It also comes with a shelf for propping up your tablet or smartphone.

 

EFITMENT Auto Incline Motorized Treadmill at a Glance:

  • Built-in Speakers
  • Auto-incline, 15 Levels
  • Backlit LCD Display
  • Bluetooth
  • 9 Pre-set Programs
  • Speed Up to 9 MPH

Sole Fitness F85 Folding Treadmill

The Sole F85 Treadmill is one of the foldable treadmills that aspire to gym-quality and it comes pretty close!

It offers lots of features but the main advantage of this treadmill is its heavy duty motor. It runs at a higher speed and includes electronic incline.

This kind of power and function aren’t offered with the less expensive models. The running belt is sufficiently long and the running deck is smooth and it runs quietly.

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This machine seems durable and built to last. It’s deck is sturdy- no slipping; and the belt provides plenty of cushion. It seems to really take a beating. Its sturdiness is most certainly due to its weight which is significant.

While its foldable, don’t expect to move the Sole from one room to another because it doesn’t look as though it will fit through a door. Before assembling, make sure you put it together wherever you plan to use it.

One downside with this treadmill is that approaching the display too closely can cause your toes to knock the front of the machine.

This could be a problem for women who plan to read while working out. There is a built-in lip to hold a tablet, cell phone, or other reading material.

The Sole F85 comes with a backlit LCD display and its font is a good size. Between that and its brightness, reading your stats is simple. The screen is so bright it might be too much if you’re working out in a dim room. This could be distracting for some users. It’s something to consider.

Another feature of this folding treadmill is a built-in fan. It’s a nice feature to have for cooling off during a workout, but the strength is disappointing.

It could be more powerful. We feel the built-in speakers are slightly above average in terms of sound quality. The machine also offers bluetooth technology which you can sync with an mp3 player.

Like most treadmills, this one includes a heart monitor which is located on the handles. It also includes a cardio chest strap.

The monitor seems to read heart rate accurately, however there is a lag in registering it on the display. This can be an annoyance if you’re trying to get a read immediately.

The incline rises to 15%. An odd thing about this machine is that when set on 0 incline, it’s still slightly elevated.

We didn’t think this is a huge deal, but it’s worth mentioning. The speed goes up to a max of 12 MPH but we notice a delay in the machine’s response between speeds.

With regard to programing this treadmill, it allows you to build your own program and it will save your age, height, and weight in order to ensure an accurate calorie count.

Overall, we are impressed with the Sole F85 Treadmill and if you’re looking for the best treadmill for walking, the F85 is it!

 

Sole Fitness F85 Folding Treadmill at a Glance:

  • 8 Pre-set Programs
  • LCD Display
  • Up to 15% Electric Incline
  • Pulse Monitor
  • Built-in Fans
  • MP3-compatible sound system
  • Up to 12 MPH

Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill

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 – an incline, varying speeds, and preset programs.

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One feature that does stand out on this Sunny model is the option to control your workout with controls located on the handrails.

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.

The machine is narrower than other models, which means runners may find their arms colliding with the side bars. Because of this and the fact the belt is somewhat narrow, we recommend it for non-runners.

The Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill has your basic console with LCD display that includes a heart rate, time, and calories burned.

There’s a shelf for placing a tablet (which incidentally, covers the display!) We like the inclusion of two cup holders where you can easily keep your phone in one and a water bottle in the other.

This machine does come with a 3-level incline. In order to adjust the incline, though, you’ll have to stop the machine and do so manually. It’s not available at the touch of your finger.

To change the incline level is pretty simple with the mechanism located at the back of the deck. It’s just not as convenient as the automated ones. It inclines from horizontal up to 5%. It’s maximum speed is 9 MPH.

For its diminutive size and build, the Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill is relatively quiet. One trick to ensure it stays this way is to regularly lubricate the belt.

Still, if you are easily distracted by noise, using headphones will make your workout more enjoyable.

One downside we wanted to mention- we question the accuracy of the heart rate function. It doesn’t always align with a wearable fitness tracker, so if this feature is something you plan to rely upon, you may want to consider one of the other models we reviewed.

You will see each has varying reliability when it comes to their heart rate monitors.

While foldable, this treadmill juts out by about 30%. In other words it doesn’t close to a flat shape. This is important to keep in mind when looking for a foldable model, as none collapses completely.

The Sunny model is lightweight, though, and can be easily stored behind a door or in a large closet making it the best compact treadmill on our list.

 

Sunny Health & Fitness Folding Treadmill at a Glance:

  • 2 Color Options
  • LCD Display
  • Pulse Monitor
  • Soft Drop Unfolding Function
  • 3 Incline Settings (Manual)
  • 9 Pre-set Programs

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 ANCHEER Folding Electric Treadmill is a sturdy, yet affordable option amongst the many options on the market. It’s quiet for the size.

Putting a mat underneath it will help to minimize the noise of your treadmill. The ANCHEER is quiet enough that you can easily watch TV while using it.

To give you an idea of its size, this machine measures about ¾ the size of gym-grade treadmills. It folds up compactly for storage. It’s really the perfect choice for someone who doesn’t have a lot of room to lay out a full-sized treadmill.

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In spite of its smaller size, it’s a solid machine but it includes rollers which allow for maneuvering it into a corner or behind a door. It should fit into a medium sized car trunk, if you plan to transport the treadmill for any reason.

The ANCHEER is geared toward women who plan to use it primarily for walking. It allows for a decent stride for its relatively small size.

This makes it perfect for the woman who has a small space who doesn’t want to compromise on her exercise routine. The stride may be too short for a woman over 5’9”, so keep that in mind.

This machine has an LCD display that’s very easy to read. It doesn’t come with some of the advanced functions found on the more expensive models, but it’s a good value for the money.

The design is nice but it is narrower than the others we reviewed, so best if you plan to use it primarily for moderate to fast walking.

Runners should consider a machine that’s wider. It’s not just the width and length that could be a concern for runners, but the machine reaches a max speed of only 6 MPH.

The heart monitor may not be accurate, as it differed from a fitness tracker; so if the heart monitor feature is an important one, another model may be a better option for you.

Or perhaps you would consider purchasing a separate fitness tracker to wear. There are very affordable options on the market today. With it’s small size it may be the best portable treadmill on our list.

 

ANCHEER Folding Electric Treadmill at a Glance:

  • 3 Color Options
  • LCD display
  • Heart Rate Monitor
  • Auto-stop Feature

Foldable Treadmill Comparison Table

Folding Treadmill Speed (MPH)Incline / LevelWeight CapacityDisplayRating
EFITMENT Motorized Treadmill0.5 - 9Yes, 9.8%220 lbsYes4.0 / 5.0
Sole Fitness F85 Folding Treadmill0.5 - 12Yes, 15%400 lbsYes4.1 / 5.0
Sunny Health & Fitness Treadmill0.5 - 10Yes, 4.4%220 lbsYes4.0 / 5.0
3G Cardio Pro Runner Treadmill0.5 – 12Yes, 15% 350 lbsYes3.9 / 5.0
ANCHEER Folding Electric Treadmill0.6 - 6 No220 lbsYes4.9 / 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.

Tips for Folding Treadmills

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.


I hope this guide was helpful for finding the best folding treadmill to fit your needs. If you want to comment or recommend a treadmill I didn’t include, please use my contact form to get in touch.

 

Versatility
Ease of Use
Value

The EFITMENT Auto Incline Motorized Treadmill is our Editors Choice for the best folding treadmill based on performance and features.

User Rating: 5 ( 1 votes)
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