The Top 5 Best Drop Arm Commodes: Buying Guide [2022]

Latest posts by At Home Care Hub Team (see all)

If you are suffering from mobility issues or have recently undergone surgery, one of the biggest problems you might face is going to the toilet. Depending on the structure of your house, most people need to walk a significant way from their rooms to the bathroom.

Luckily there are bedside commodes that can make this situation more convenient. There are different bedside commodes, like the 3 in 1 commode and Shower Commode Wheelchairs but the drop arm commode is one of the most comfortable options.

Medical practitioners recommend using drop arm commodes for older people, people with mobility restrictions, and other health conditions. If you are searching for a drop arm commode, this guide will immensely help you in your buying process.

The guide reviews some of the best drop arm commodes that different users widely recommend. It also contains a list of different factors that you can use when buying a drop arm commode.

Let us check out the best drop arm commodes that you can select from!

What is a Drop Arm Commode?

A drop arm commode is a kind of bedside commode that has easy accessibility. As the name suggests, you can move the arms of this commode up and down. This makes it easier for the user to move in and out of the chair.

People with mobility issues due to old age or physical restrictions often find it hard to go to the toilet. Especially during the night, it might seem like a daunting task to move out of bed and go to the toilet. This happens even when they have assistance.

To solve this issue, doctors recommend the use of bedside commodes. These commodes are kept right next to the user’s bed, and they can shift from their bed to the chair with help. This shortens the distance between the toilet and the bedroom.

Standard commodes have a fixed arm, making it hard for users to get in the chair. People with very limited mobility will need great assistance to use the chairs. Hence the person assisting will need to hold the user as well as the chair.

When you have a drop arm commode, the assistant can move the arm and then shift the user slowly to the commode chair. There will be no restrictions since the arm will not come in the way.

Who Can Benefit from Using a Drop Arm Commode?

Drop arm commodes are mostly used by older adults or ones with limited mobility. The commode kept on their bedside makes it easy for  them to attend to their nature’s call. The user will not have to travel to the toilet to do so.

Other than them, people who have had recent surgeries or are under rehabilitation will find the commode useful. The commode is also great for people with urinary tract infections or low bowel/bladder control.

Overall, people who might find it hard to go to the toilet at night will use the drop arm commode.

Several people use bedpans for this purpose. However, a drop arm commode seems to be a more practical solution. It is designed as a traditional commode, and you can be more comfortable.

Many doctors or caregivers recommend the usage of drop arm commodes since they are easier to use. You can remove the arm of the commode and have ample space to shift the user. Once they sit down, you can put down the arm, which will become an armrest.

Having a drop arm bedside commode also reduces the risk of accidents. The user will no longer have to hurry to reach the toilet. This increases their safety and makes it a very convenient option.

Parameters Reviewed to Choose the Best Drop Arm Commode

The choice for the five best drop arm commodes was not a simple one. We had to consider certain parameters to ensure we made the right choice for you. Below are the parameters we reviewed to choose the best drop arm commode.

Brand Reputation

Multiple companies are selling different types of drop arm commodes. However, not every company ensures the quality of its product. This is only done by reputable companies who have been in the market for some time. Even when we looked for new companies, we checked if they had a good customer base.

Feedbacks

Assessing the feedbacks from previous customers was a very important parameter for our choice. All of the products reviewed in the guide had good customer reviews. We got rid of brands and products that seemed to have fake and bad reviews. To check this, we visited not only the product sites but also reputable third-party websites.

The Top 5 Picks For the Best Drop Arm Commode at a Glance

Top 5 Picks For the Best Drop Arm Commode

The DMI commode is a high-quality portable drop arm commode with interesting features. This commode can easily be placed on top of a normal toilet. You can assemble the commode without using any tools or requiring any help.

When looking for a budget drop arm commode, you will come across the Drive Medical Deluxe commode. Despite the affordable price range, the commode has all the necessary features required by the user. Moreover, you can easily clean the commode after every use without any hassle.

A model that has a high weight-bearing capacity of 1000 lbs and is made from heavy-duty materials. It comes with adjustable features and has a sturdy and safe frame. You can use the commode on top of your normal toilet without any hassle.

People looking for extra comfort will love the Medline Heavy-Duty commode. This commode comes with a padded seat which is also wider than most commodes. It also has a good weight-bearing capacity making it the perfect choice for most users.

The Nova Medical Transport Chair is different from the other ones mentioned in the guide due to the presence of wheels. This makes the commode chair a more portable option than the others. It also has a high-quality built, making it a very sturdy and durable commode chair.

The Top 5 Picks for the Best Drop Arm Commode

Choosing a drop arm commode is a very crucial decision. You need to buy a commode that suits the needs of the patient. There are many options in the market, and you need to ensure you choose the right one for the patient.

Seeing as choosing a drop arm commode is a daunting task, you could always use help.

The guide contains reviews of the best drop arm commodes that would be convenient to the user. Whether they are bedridden or are recovering from an injury, these commodes will serve their needs.

Below are the top five picks for the best drop commodes present in the market!

Best Overall Drop Arm Commode: DMI Portable Commode

Best Overall Drop Arm Commode DMI Portable Commode

One of the best models that you could find is the DMI portable commode. This is a high-quality commode that is also easily portable. The commode chair offers several interesting features which make it highly functional.

It has a weight-bearing capacity of 220 lbs which is good for most average users. The design is that of a standard drop arm commode and is durable.

This commode chair is easily portable, and you can carry it from one room to another without any hassle. The model has a pull-pin system for the arms which means you can drop the arms when required.

The surface of the seat is sturdy and slip-resistant, which makes it a good choice. It is also one of the safest options in the market. The commode seat is made from plastic, but it is of the highest quality, so you can use it long-term.

Pros

  • High-quality commode chair that is highly durable
  • Drop easily adjustable arm mechanism
  • A weight-bearing capacity of 220 lbs
  • Plastic pail of 7.5 liters

Cons

  • May not be the most comfortable option
  • Lacks bed rails which is a safety feature

Best Budget Drop Arm Commode: Drive Medical Deluxe Commode

Best Budget Drop Arm Commode Drive Medical Deluxe Commode

The Drive Medical Deluxe Commode is a budget option that comes with all the necessary features. This commode chair comes with an adjustable mechanism and is very easy to use. It makes the transfer process of users very easy and convenient.

You can easily wash and clean the drop arm mechanism. There is a safety frame and covered armrests that provide you with additional comfort. Additional accessories such as a splash shield, a seat, a plastic pail, a lid, and a commode bucket are provided with the package.

It has a weight-bearing capacity of 300 lbs which is good for small to average users. The design of the commode is safe, which makes the transfer of the patient easy. It also ensures that the chair does not move when you are transferring the patient.

You can also easily move the drop armrests when you are transferring the patients. This provides you with space so that the patients do not get hurt from the arms.

Pros

  • Easily adjustable and functional commode chair
  • Maximum weight bearing capacity of 300 lbs
  • Safe design that makes it easy for user transfer
  • Cleaning the commode is very easy and hassle-free

Cons

  • The model lacks any anti-rust design

Best Bariatric Drop Arm Commode: Drive Medical Bariatric Bedside Commode

Best Bariatric Drop Arm Commode Drive Medical Bariatric Bedside Commode

If you are a large person looking for a commode with a high weight-bearing capacity, then the Drive Medical Bariatric Bedside Commode will be the perfect fit. It can bear up to 1000 lbs, which is more than what any of the other commode chairs can offer.

Despite the high weight-bearing capacity, the chair is significantly lightweight. Moreover, the commode chair seats are extra-wide, making it the right option for large users.

A great feature of this commode is you can use it over an elongated toilet. This acts as a raised seat for people who find it uncomfortable to sit comfortably on their regular toilet. To do this, you will need to remove the bucket and place the frame and chair around the commode.

The drop arms are also easy to use and can be adjusted according to your comfort. There are soft covers placed over the arms to make it more comfortable for you. Another thing that you can adjust in this commode chair is the seat height according to the user’s needs.

Pros

  • Large weight-bearing capacity of 1000 lbs
  • Use the commode as a raised seat
  • Safety frame makes the commode chair more reliable
  • Drop arms are very easy to use and adjustable

Cons

  • May be too large for small to average users

Best Padded Drop Arm Commode: Medline Heavy-Duty Commode

Best Padded Drop Arm Commode Medline Heavy-Duty Commode

One of the most comfortable options in this list is the Medline Heavy-Duty Commode. As already stated in its name, the chair is made from heavy-duty materials. It has a weight-bearing capacity of 350 lbs which is good for most people.

The chair comes with padded seats, which is the reason for its exceptional comfort. This padded surface is anti-slip which is great for the user. It is also very easy to clean the chair despite the padded surface.

People who have average or bigger than average physique will find the chair to be a great option.

The drop arm mechanism is useful since it makes the transfer of patients very easy. You can swing the near arm away and shift the patient to the chair. Once the patients have shifted on the chair, you can swing the arms inwards.

The seat height ranges between 20 inches to 25 inches which you can adjust according to your need. Moreover, the depth of the seat ranges between 18 inches and 20 inches.

Pros

  • A very comfortable option due to the presence of padded seats
  • Wide seats add to the comfort of the user
  • The padded surface is easy to clean
  • Anti-slip surface
  • Good weight-bearing capacity

Cons

  • It is an expensive model as compared to others

Best Portable Drop Arm Commode: Nova Medical Transport Chair

Best Portable Drop Arm Commode Nova Medical Transport Chair

If you are looking for a high-quality drop arm commode with wheels, then the Nova Medical Transport Chair is the right option for you. This makes the commode chair one of the most portable options on the list. The drop arm mechanism of the chair makes the transfer process much smoother.

You can use the commode chair as a transportation device as well. The chair has a removable pad that you can conveniently place on the seat. There is a lid and bucket included in the package. You can remove and place them quite easily when you want to use them just as a commode.

The best thing about this commode chair is the easy assembly. You will not require any tools to assemble the chair. You can find videos online that can help you in the assembly process.

The material of the seat is plastic, so it is better not to use it as a shower chair. Moreover, the chair also has swing-away footrests that you can remove. You can operate the wheel locks with the foot pedal so the user or caregiver does not have to bend down.

Pros

  • The model is equipped with wheels for easy portability
  • Drop arm mechanism
  • Easy to transfer the user from bed to the chair
  • Versatile model

Cons

  • Not very comfortable
  • It cannot be used as a shower chair

Buyer’s Guide: What Should You Look for While Buying a Good Drop Arm Commode?

What Should You Look for While Buying a Good Drop Arm Commode

A drop arm commode is used by people who have mobility issues and are elders. Hence, the commodes should be designed to satisfy their bathroom requirements. When choosing a commode, you will need to look at certain factors.

These factors help you make the right choice and ensure you do not end up with the wrong product. Whether it is the adjustability, price, or other factors, you need to ensure everything is perfect. We took into consideration the affordability, ease of use, and adjustability to make the product recommendations listed in this guide.

Mentioned below are some of the essential factors you need to consider when buying the best drop arm commode.

Weight Capacity

Every commode comes with different weight capacities. Some are suitable for lightweight people, while others can bear heavy weight. This is an essential factor that you should never miss out on.

The weight capacity especially becomes essential when the user is heavyweight. If you buy a lightweight bearing commode, it could cause a serious accident. The commode might break or get damaged due to not being able to support the user’s weight.

Most standard drop arm commodes have a weight-bearing capacity of up to 300 pounds. If the user is more than 300 pounds, you will need to search for suitable models for heavyweight users.

Adjustable Height

The commode needs to be comfortable and at the appropriate height. If the user does not get a comfortable sitting position, it could cause pain or problems with posture. Since everyone has a different height requirement, the commode needs to have an adjustable height.

You should not have to strain yourself while getting up or plop down while sitting. This could also lead to serious injuries if you fall. Additionally, your feet should not dangle when you sit on the commode.

When you sit, your feet should completely touch the ground. The right position will be when your knees are at a right angle from your ankles. For this, you will need the height of the commode to be adjustable.

Seat Design

The next factor you should look for is the design of the seat. Different commodes have different seat designs, and not all might be comfortable for you. Some commodes might have an oval-shaped seat, while others can have a square-shaped seat.

The standard design of a commode seat is the oval shape. This is generally the most comfortable one, but some users might prefer the square, elongated commode.

Apart from the shape, the seat design also includes whether or not it has a front opening. Seats with a front opening are more comfortable for wiping. However, you will need to check if the opening size is right for you.

Wheels or No Wheels

Drop Arm Commode Wheels or No Wheels

Drop arm commodes come with both wheels and no wheels. You can choose either depending on the user’s mobility status. If the user only needs the commode during the night and can move around during the day, you can go for a commode with no wheels.

On the other hand, it is best to choose a commode with wheels if the user has very limited mobility. These are users who require constant assistance to move from one place to another.

The user may have a caregiver who can use the wheeled commode to take them to the bathroom. Sometimes the commode can also be used as a shower chair if the user cannot stand while taking a bath.

Materials

You will need to check the material of the commode frame before you buy it. Most of the commodes are either made from stainless steel or aluminum. If you want a lightweight material, you can go for aluminum.

Even if aluminum is lightweight, it is still very durable. However, this is best used for lightweight people.

On the other hand, if you want a more durable option, it is best to use stainless steel. They are heavier, and you can use them for a long time. Moreover, stainless steel is also great for heavyweight people.

Foldable

Drop arm commodes are generally foldable since you might need to carry them when you are traveling. However, some commodes might not have this feature. The requirement for a foldable commode depends on whether the user might travel in the future or not.

Even if you want to move it from one room to another, it would be best to have a foldable commode. They can also be stored away when the user is not utilizing them.

Commodes that cannot be folded will take up a lot of space. It will also be hard to store them in your house since you cannot keep them in your cupboard or closet.

Price

One of the essential factors is the price of the commode. People normally have a budget when they are looking for a particular item. The same goes for when you are buying a drop arm commode.

Depending on the type of commode and the brand, the price will vary. It is best not to go for too low a price since it could comprise the quality. Since elderly people or ones will use the commode with limited mobility, you will need it to be sturdy.

That being said, many budget commodes are of good quality. The guide mentions one such budget option that you could go for if you do not want to go higher in the price range.

FAQs on Drop Arm Commodes

You might have some concerns and queries when using a drop arm commode, especially if you are doing it for the first time. Whether it is for you, or someone you know, it is better to have complete knowledge about the product.

The guide answers some frequently asked questions in the below section that could cover your doubts.

Question: How Often Do You Need to Clean a Drop Arm Commode?

Answer: You will need to clean the commode every day since it is a matter of hygiene. The user will be using the commode daily, so you need to ensure that it is clean at all times. Sometimes it might be essential to clean the commode more than one time a day.
Cleaning a commode is generally very easy. If you are doing it multiple times, you can simply use a cloth and water. In case it requires deeper cleaning, uses soap water to do it.
You need to ensure that you clean the commode with both dry and wet cloth before you store it away.

Question: How to Safely Use a Drop Arm Commode?

Answer: A drop arm commode has an arm that you can move up and down. Like any other bedside commode, you will need to ensure it is within reach of the user. If the commode has wheels, then you must lock the wheels before the user sits on them.
You must place the bucket of the commode under the seat. While moving from the bed to the commode, the user might require assistance depending on their mobility.
It is best to keep a small amount of water in the bucket. This makes it easier to clean the bucket after use. Moreover, make sure they are not feeling any kind of discomfort after sitting on the commode.
Move the arm up before they sit and put it down once the user has sat comfortably on the commode seat.

Question: Are Drop Arm Commodes Very Expensive?

Answer: Drop arm commodes come in a variable price range. There will be differences in price, features, design, portability, adjustability, and other factors. However, not all drop arm commodes are expensive.
Some might belong to the higher price range, while you can get others within an affordable budget. Along with the price, you need to see that the commode has all the required features.
There is no use in buying a low-cost drop arm commode that does not serve the purpose.

Endnotes

Drop arm commodes are an essential product that makes life easy for elderly people or those with limited mobility. You or your loved one may have had a recent surgery or be unable to walk to the toilet at night without assistance. It is best to have a commode that you can keep next to your bed in such a scenario.

The guide contains five of the best drop arm commodes that you can find online. Among them, the DMI Portable Commode is one of the best choices. It has all the necessary features and is available at a competitive price.

Do you have any other recommendations for drop arm commodes? Have you used any of the commodes mentioned in the guide? Tell us in the comment below!

Scroll to Top