The Inside Scoop on Stroller Wheels
Stroller wheels come in a variety of options, from air-filled to plastic. Each offers its own set of benefits, and after trying them out, many consumers find that they prefer one type over the other.
- Air-filled tires: Like bicycle tires, air-filled or pneumatic tires provide a more cushioned ride and can generally handle bumps well, but also require more upkeep and maintenance. Strollers with air-filled tires also tend to weigh a bit more than other tires. Parents who live in areas with uneven sidewalks or want to use their stroller on many different types of surfaces and terrains usually prefer air-filled tires to help provide a smoother ride.
- EVA tires: Perhaps the most common types of tires, EVA (which stands for ethylene vinyl acetate), is a lightweight material that holds up well on strollers, and is common on many of today’s strollers. EVA is a great alternative to air-filled tires since they require virtually no maintenance and are less heavy. Many times, EVA tires are referred to as “never-flat” to highlight a benefit over air-filled tires. If a stroller has suspension, this can help give your little passenger a more comfortable ride, even without air-filled tires.
Aside from the various types of stroller tires, many strollers also offer parents the option of having the wheels swivel or lock in place. Here are the three different options:
- Fixed Wheels: Like the name implies, a stroller with a fixed wheel means that the wheel does not turn. Usually, fixed-wheel strollers are preferred by athletes or those who are looking for a jogging stroller that can easily handle rough terrain. Rather than trying to constantly steer the stroller straight over bumps and dips, a fixed-wheel stroller keeps a straighter path and allows the parent to more easily navigate their route. To turn a stroller with a fixed wheel, you simply need to press down on the stroller handle so that the front wheel lifts up off the ground slightly. You can then steer the stroller in the direction you want to go.
- Swivel Wheels: If you plan on using your stroller around town or for every day walks, a swivel wheel might be best for you. By simply pushing the handle, you can easily steer the stroller in any direction.
- Fixed or Swivel: There are a number of strollers that offer wheels that can either swivel or lock in place. This provides parents with the convenience of locking the wheels for better handling over rough terrain, and then unlocking them for a day around town. These strollers can either have air-filled or EVA tires.