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Old 03-21-2013, 10:00 PM   #1
Earning My Ears
Join Date: Jan 2013
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Tips with a new ecv user

I will be o
Going in June with my dad and we are getting an ECV rental because he has severe arthritis in his back along with several other issues (thanks to serving in Vietnam). What tips does anyone have for someone who Santa used one before?

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Old 03-21-2013, 10:15 PM   #2
Cheshire Figment
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I would suggest that he start using them in large grocery stores, or WalMarts, or other large store so he can get used to them Just realize that the ones in stores are much harder to maneuver than normal rentals (because of the large basket on the front) and also they are much slower than other rentals. But at least he will be able to get the basics down.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:16 PM   #3
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Go to a store that has them (like target, Walmart etc) and practice. Just make sure it is fully charged. I got stuck in the Walmart when the battery died-oops

The stores are bigger than most of the ones used in Disney
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:52 PM   #4
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The speed settings are usually marked by a tortoise & a hare. Go to turtle when in a crowd. Set at bunny speed when climbing hills & only when confidence is gained.

When you back up, the speed is naturally cut in half by the scooter itself. It's a built-in feature, and there's nothing wrong with the scooter.

You will also need tortoise when going down a steep hill - such as the one at the monorail. The brakes are built-in & you will feel them holding you back, but again I would recommend the slowest speed.

Charge the battery overnight - every night. You can't overcharge a scooter battery.

Above all - have a great time on your vacation!
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Old 03-22-2013, 09:50 AM   #5
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Keep an eye on the battery level, and make sure to take the key with you when you need to park it and get off.
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:59 PM   #6
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Yes! - Always take the key with you! (I can't believe I forgot that!)

Thanks, ttintagel!
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Old 03-29-2013, 05:40 PM   #7
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One helpful thing to know is that it's possible to put a scooter into manual \ neutral and push it when need be. Especially for first-time scooter drivers, sometimes it can be tough maneuvering into a bus or boat or even just a tight corner of your hotel room. The Disney CMs are very used to it, but it's understandable some people feel a little silly trying to 3-point turn an unfamiliar vehicle while two dozen people watch. If ever the situation occurs, just pop the scooter into neutral and roll it into place.

There'll be a switch or lever somewhere on the back to switch to neutral gear; ask the rental place to show you when you pick up the scooter. If you don't put it in neutral first the wheels will lock and it can't be pushed.
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Old 03-30-2013, 02:44 PM   #8
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Practice at the resort with the scooter before going to a park.

If you are using Disney transportation as an on site guest you may want to consider being the driver of the ECV on and off the buses or at least help him if he gets stuck in some way. There's a manual overdrive; so, you can maneuver it by hand, as well if need be. Sometimes, backing up in reverse can be hard and you may want to drive it out for him. If you decide to do Soarin' in Epcot in the Living Land you need to do an elevator with the scooter to get to the level where the ride is located. Elevators can be scary for first time users of scooter; so, you may want to drive it for him in that instance, too. Finally, getting the scooter in and out of your resort room might be better handled by you, as well.

If you are staying off site, make sure you know how to take the scooter apart and put it back together before you go to a park. Make sure your car is big enough to handle the scooter with all your passengers.

Take the battery charger with you to the parks in case you need a recharge. Be religious about recharging the scooter every day. It's a real drag to need a battery charge in the park. There is a gauge to keep an eye out for your battery power. Be diligent about shutting the scooter off when you are viewing a show, parade, or fireworks. Save the battery when eating, too; don't forget to shut it off.

You can take scooters through many of the ride lines; so, do it. It will be much better than standing. Try to still do fastpass every chance you can.

Some of the smaller scooters do not come with a headlight. If you plan on a lot of nights at the parks you may want to consider buying a bike headlight that can attach to the handlebar of the scooter. You can get them for $12 or so. Personally, I don't have a problem at night, but my husband needs the headlight.

If you really want some good practice before the trip, try a local zoo. They rent scooters and it will ease his mind before going to Disney. Disney is always busy and very crowded; so, it would be good if your group try to shield him from the crowd. Depending how many there are you could actually surround his scooter. This will guard against people darting out in front of him if you are doing gunshot for him. He does have to watch the crowd carefully to avoid hitting someone. We always yield if we see someone too close to us. Be careful to use all the ramps for the handicap wheelchairs. You don't want to go over a curb with a scooter; you could get hurt or break the scooter.

Avoid the rain with a scooter. You could get the mechanical parts so wet the scooter won't work. Some people use coverups for the tiller when necessary like a poncho or shower cap. It's best to seek shelter until the rain blows over. There are places to go inside if necessary.

Last edited by Bete; 03-30-2013 at 08:10 PM.
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Old 04-03-2013, 01:52 AM   #9
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Store's are ok for practice but I'd suggest a Mall. Bigger area, multi-levels and different transitions going into various stores. Also provides the opportunity to encounter more and varied "walking" traffic and evasive maneuvers as people can and do walk right in your path frequently. In a short time you'll be ready for a speedway!
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