While it’s easy to find treadmills that cost a few thousands of dollars, you should know that your own fitness and workout needs might not warrant such expensive models. Yes, sometimes cost can reflect on the quality of the treadmill but if you’re not fussed about bells and whistles and ultra-high performance machines, you can find a good budget one that you and your family can buy for your home. That is why in this article we guide you through finding the best treadmill under $300.
As with any piece of gym equipment, you must first measure the space you plan to use for the treadmill. These machines can be quite bulky but you can also find a compact folding treadmill with incline if that’s what you’d prefer. You’ll have more options if you only intend to walk on it so make sure that the unit is rated for running if that’s what you need and check what its top speed is. If you’re unsure of what to look for when you shop for a treadmill, let our guide help you.
To pick the best treadmill under 300 dollars, you will also have to be aware of how often it can be used in order to keep it in working order for as long as possible. If other members in your family will also use it, especially for running, a budget model might not be sufficient. That’s why we only pick the most durable ones. If your budget is only $200, then you will have to go with a manual treadmill instead of a motorized one.
|Product||Rating (out of 5)||Incline settings||Top speed||Max. User Capacity||Price|
|Weslo Cadence G 5.2||4.1||2||10 mph||250 lbs||$$$$|
|Confidence GTR Power Pro 1100W||4||3||7.5 mph||250 lbs||$$$|
|Merax JK1603E||4.1||3||6.2 mph||220 lbs||$|
|Confidence Power Trac Pro 735W||4.2||3||6.2 mph||265 lbs||$|
|Goplus 800W||4||0||6.5 mph||220 lbs||$$|
Treadmills with Incline
Weslo Cadence R 5.2 Treadmill
You wouldn’t know that the Weslo Cadence R 5.2 Treadmill comes in at just under $300, although some retailers list it for a little bit more. There is a lot packed into this value for money machine that is not ususally found on electric treadmills under 300. The Cadence G 5.2 comes with a walking deck measuring 16 X 50 inches, although if you are not too tall or heavy you can even try light jogging on it. This is because its top speed is 10 mph and it’s driven by a 2.5 chp motor.
You can adjust the incline manually between two levels by folding the back legs down and under the deck. You can also adjust speed in 1/10th mph increments. It comes with an in-built app that includes 6 different workouts to help you make use of these settings. You can count calories burned and track time and distance on the display monitor and the numbers scan through one at a time. It can measure your heart rate although you might want to invest in a separate heart rate monitor if that is important to you. The Cadence R 5.2 does this by measuring your pulse when you push and hold down a button on the console with your thumb. You have to stop to do this.
For those with weak joints, the deck comes with some cushioning to make workouts more comfortable. However, if cushioning is important to you, then we recommend that you up your budget and get one of these treadmills that come with proper shock absorption.
When you’re done, you can fold up the treadmill and put it in a corner. Assembly is easy although a few customers said that packaging was poor. The motor is relatively silent for a treadmill at this price.
Confidence GTR Power Pro 1100W Motorized Electric Treadmill
The Confidence GTR Power Pro 1100W comes in a bit lower priced and offers an adjustable motorized manual incline at three different settings that can be changed mid-workout, and 12 built-in fitness programs that will adjust the speed and incline automatically. It also comes with a built-in heart rate monitor. It operates at a top speed of 7.5 mph, but seems to be a bit shaky at higher speeds, so it is not suitable for more than jogging or slow runs. It also does not have a cushioned deck, so it can be hard on joints and ligaments. Max weight recommended is 250 lbs.
Perhaps the best feature of this machine is that it weighs only a mere 62 lbs., which makes it easy to move, fold and store. The base also folds up for easy storage. The light weight can also make it feel not as sturdy or stable, however, and can be noisy when you run on it even though it is silent for just walking. The handrails are low, which makes it more difficult for taller people to use, particularly as the speed and incline controls are on the handrails. It has belt adjustments, so if you ever feel like the belt is not aligned, it’s easy to fix. The LED control panel displays speed, distance, time and calories but is not backlit.
Merax JK1603E Folding Electric Treadmill
The Merax JK1603E Folding Electric Treadmill Motorized Running Machine is one of the least expensive here and we rate it as the best budget treadmill for running. It offers 3 built-in workout programs and 3 manual incline positions that you adjust by using pins found on the base. It has a multi-function backlit display that tracks speed, distance, heart rate and calories burned and a cushioned deck that helps protect ankle, back and knee joints when running. It also features a safety emergency stop key and handlebar controls for ease of use and its lowest speed of 0.62 mph is excellent for seniors who have to be careful while working out.
It is not recommended for users over 220 lbs., however, and at only 14″ wide, the belt is one of the narrowest of the under $300 treadmills and is also only 44″ long. The unit weighs only 70 lbs. and comes on rolling wheels, which make it easy to fold up and move for storage. The belt is adjusted prior to shipping, but is also easy to make small adjustments to for better use and can be tightened up as it loosens over time.
Confidence Power Trac Pro 735W Motorized Electric Treadmill
The Confidence Power Trac Pro is also one of the least expensive here. After the Weslo Cadence G, it probably offers the most features for the price. It features 12 built-in fitness programs and can operate between 0.6 and 6.2 mph, with four quick select pre-set speeds to choose from: 1.86 mph, 3 mph, 4.9 mph and 6.2mph. It also offers three possible angles of incline: 5 degrees, 3.5 degrees, 2 degrees. As with the Merax JK1603E, however, these angles must be adjusted via a pin located on the base of the machine and can’t be changed mid-workout.
The Confidence Power Trac Pro does offer a Confidence RunDeck, which provides shock absorption for less strain and more comfort during exercise. It also offers a Confidence RunGrip Anti-Slip Belt and emergency stop clip to bring added safety, allowing you to workout with confidence. Combined with the lowest speed of 0.6 mph, these features make it a good choice for seniors.
An informative LED display screen allows you to monitor calories, speed, time, and distance throughout your workout but is not backlit so it may be difficult to read. One great feature of the The Confidence Power Trac Pro, however, is that it is available in three different colors: black, white and pink.
The runway measures only 14 inches wide and is only 39 inches long. The entire machine weighs in at a lightweight 52 lbs. but will accommodate a max user weight of 265 lbs. If you are looking for the most lightweight and portable unit, then this is probably great for you. However, like other lightweight units, the Confidence Power Trac Pro can seems shaky and unstable at higher speeds and is not suitable for running too fast.
Treadmill without Incline
Goplus 800W Folding Treadmill
The Goplus 800W Folding Treadmill doesn’t have too many features for those looking for an intense workout. The machine operates at speeds between 0.5 and 6.5 mph and offers 12 preset programs, but does not offer any incline. It does have a stop key for safety, however. The frame is made of heavy duty steel, but only weighs 50 lbs. There is also no cushion or padding on the belt, so it would be hard on joints and tendons if you use it for running.
An LED display screen offers information about heart rate, speed, distance, time and calories and can be set to scan between settings. It comes with a built in shelf for a phone or tablet but when a phone or tablet is placed on the shelf, however, it covers up the display screen. There are also two cup holders built into the display unit.
The Goplus 800W Folding Treadmill also has the smallest belt area (14″ x 38.2″) and also carries one of the lowest weight capacities of 220 lbs. All in all, it is a good choice for those who only workout to keep in shape but need something to distract them in the process. That’s what the tablet holder is for!