Treadmills are one of the most popular types of exercise machines. The ambitions of the user can be as simple as walking. Treadmills are also popular with advanced fitness enthusiasts. The reasons for owning a treadmill vary.
Some people like the convenience of walking in the privacy of their homes. Some live in areas where it's not possible to walk outdoors. Competitive runners appreciate that the weather can restrict their ability to train outside.
The reasons notwithstanding, treadmills are an efficient way to burn calories and improve fitness. But, there are hundreds of models and designs on the market. How to pick the right one? Do you spend a couple of thousand dollars on a fancy model?
Or, can a less-expensive, cheaper model of treadmill get the job done? We think there are some so-called cheap treadmills for less than $300 that are worth investigating. We've done the legwork for you. Here are seven super treadmills, all for less than $300.
1. Weslo Cadence G 5.9i
- This treadmill has a powerful motor for a treadmill below $300.
- It can reach a top speed rating of 10 miles per hour so that you can train with intensity.
- The heart monitor reads from thumb pressure, so you don't have to grip anything to get your active pulse.
- The Weslo Cadence G 5.9i doesn't have a cooling fan in the console.
- This treadmill only has manual incline adjustment using the feet.
- Full-size, easy-to-read console
- Dual water holders
- Extra-long 50-inch tread belt
- Thumb sense heart rate monitor
- Six preset workouts
- Spring-loaded deck folds up for storage
Weslo makes the first treadmill we found for you to consider. This is a foldable treadmill, so it doesn't take up much space when not in use. It has an excellent maximum user weight rating for a cheaper model. The user weight max is 275-pounds.
The running area is 16-inches wide, which is typical for less-expensive treadmills. However, the Weslo Cadence G 5.9i has a 50-inch long deck. While it may not fit long-striding competitive runners, it is designed to workout at speeds up to 10 miles per hour.
For a smaller, less expensive treadmill, Weslo put a strong motor. The Cadence G 5.9i has a 2.25hp motor powering the deck, which is stronger than most low-budget treadmills. When you consider price, max speed, and motor strength, the Cadence 5.9i is good for its class. Check price here.
2. SereneLife Electric Folding Treadmill
- The SereneLife Electric Folding Treadmill is lighter than many in this class, so it is very easy to shift around a room.
- While the incline adjustments are manual, this treadmill has more than most inexpensive manual incline models.
- The FitShow App allows you to track your progress, plus has dozens of preset workout programs.
- The small 1.0 horsepower motor is not strong enough to handle intense running.
- With a narrower and shorter deck than other models, the SereneLife Electric Folding Treadmill is best reserved for a walking pace.
- Preset training programs
- FitShow App to expand the number of preset workouts
- Large digital LCD showing run time, speed, and calories burned
- Handles with convenient grip sensors to read pulse rate
- Easy-glide folding deck for storage
SereneLife is an American company in New York. Their mission is to help customers live a more serene life through healthy fitness. The SereneLife Electric Folding Treadmill is an affordable home exercise machine that supports their mission.
This model has a handful of traditional training programs. However, there is also an app available from SereneLife that features dozens of training regimens and allows you to track your progress.
The digital LCD is larger than comparable models, so it's easy to read the elapsed workout time, the speed you're going, plus the calories you're burning. The SereneLife Electric Folding Treadmill belt can propel you at up to six miles per hour. Check price here.
3. Best Choice Products 800W treadmill
- The smaller size is an excellent choice for people with only minimal space for a treadmill.
- Even though it's small, the Best Choice 800W has a steel frame to improve stability.
- This treadmill has a lightweight deck with wheels so you can quickly move it around.
- Top speed is only 7.5 miles per hour, so the Best Choice Products 800W Treadmill is not well-suited for running.
- There is no incline adjustment for this treadmill.
- Three pre-programmed workouts
- Full-size LCD console
- 800 Watt motor
- Lightweight deck for easy fold-up storage
- Double bottle holder and media shelf for phones, tables, or reading material
Our next treadmill gives you a pair of color choices. Most treadmills models come in a standard black/gray/silver basic color combination.
The Best Choice Products 800W treadmill has the option as well. But, you can also add some flash to your home gym with a white and pink combination. This treadmill has a large digital display and includes three preset workout programs. The console display tracks your total distance, speed, time, and calorie burn.
The deck is small for space-saving benefits. However, it's sturdy enough to have a 250-pound user weight rating. Best Choice Products added wheels to the front of the machine to let you easily roll it from room to room. Check price here.
4. Goplus 1100W treadmill
- Above-average 2-year warranty with a 100 percent risk-free satisfaction guarantee provides confidence in the materials and workmanship.
- Super quiet 1100W electric motor is powerful enough to propel the deck up to 6 miles per hour.
- There is an extra emergency stop key on the handles for increased safety.
- The Goplus 110W Treadmill does not offer an adjustable incline.
- At 220-pounds, the user weight maximum is a little low.
- Large, easy-to-read LCD
- Folding deck for space-saving storage
- Lightweight at 59-pounds
- Curved safety handles
- Emergency shutoff key on the handles
- 2-year warranty
Our next treadmill has a heavy-duty motor that generates 1110 watts of power. This is a strong motor for such an inexpensive treadmill. It is also extremely quiet, so you easily listen to music or watch a TV show while using the Goplus 1100W at full speed.
The deck is 14-inches wide, which is standard for beginner-level treadmills. The steel frame is sturdy enough to walk, jog, or even light running. Despite having a sturdy steel frame, the Goplus 1100W Treadmill still weighs less than 60-pounds.
The full-size LCD shows elapsed time, distance, and calories burned. This machine also has a unique curve to the side handles. The curved handles angle back towards the front and down towards the deck. This is an excellent feature for rehab and therapy. Check price here.
5. Merax JK1603E Treadmill
- The quick folding deck makes it a snap roll this treadmill out of the way when not in use.
- With most of the standard features of low-cost treadmills, the Merax JK1603E is possibly the best value.
- The LCD and speed controls are very user friendly.
- The 14-inch belt width on the Merax JK1603E Treadmill is slightly narrower than most inexpensive models.
- When you receive your machine, their warranty information does not come with the parts and accessories. You must email the company for warranty information.
- Built-in LCD with large readout area
- Dual handgrip pulse monitors
- MP3 port and auxiliary audio jacks
- Quiet 500W vacuum motor design
- Easy-to-access start and stop buttons
- Dual cup holders
The Merax JK1603E Treadmill is one of the least expensive treadmills that still offers enough features to handle at least intermediate level workouts. This is a sturdy and durable treadmill that you may find surprising is still in our price category.
There are dual handgrip sensors to monitor your pulse rate. The LCD has larger than normal numbers, so it's easy to read. The 500 Watt motor is especially quiet. This treadmill weighs less than 70 pounds, so it's easy to shift around.
The Merax JK1603E is very compact. It is an excellent home treadmill choice if you have limited space. This is a perfect starter treadmill for beginners. There is a user weight limit of 240-pounds, so this treadmill is sturdy enough for a light job. Check price here.
6. Confidence Power Plus Treadmill
- Extremely affordable and stable enough to warrant a 250-pound user weight rating.
- Very large LCD console readout, so you can follow speed, distance and calories burned.
- The Confidence Power Plus folds down flat so that you can slide it under a bed.
- The LCD can be hard to read in low light.
- The Confidence Power Plus Treadmill does not have any preset workout programs.
- Large console buttons for speed adjustment and start/stop
- Automatic emergency shutoff key
- Speed range from 0.6 to 6.2 miles per hour
- 600W low-noise electric motor
- Folds flat for under-the-bed storage
Our next treadmill is another outstanding for first-time treadmill users or anyone on a strict budget. The Confidence Power Plus is also lightweight and folds up to save space when not in use. The speed range goes from 0.6 to 6.2 miles per hour.
One unique feature of this model is how flat it folds up. You can even lower the console and side handles to slide this treadmill under a bed. There is a 600W, low-noise motor that propels a 14-inch wide by 38-inch long tread belt.
If you forget to turn off your treadmill when you've finished a workout, this machine has an automatic shutoff after it's idle for 30-minutes. While it's an inexpensive treadmill, the Confidence Power Plus is still sturdy enough to rate at a 250 max user weight limit. Check price here.
7. Sunny Health & Fitness Manual Treadmill
- You fold up the deck and flatten down the handles to wheel this machine anywhere for fast and convenient storage.
- Since there is no electricity required, you can load up this treadmill to travel with you anywhere.
- This is the lightest treadmill in the class, so it's extremely easy to just wheel out of sight.
- There is no way to change the incline or the speed of the belt. This is strictly a manual treadmill.
- The Sunny Health and Fitness Manual Treadmill has an LCD that shows the traditional treadmill data, but it is very small.
- All manual operation – no electric required
- LCD console needs only two AA batteries
- Folds up to slide under a bed or roll into a closet
- Non-skid belt for safety and security
- Maximum user weight rating of 220-pounds
Our final treadmill pulls the plug on the need for an electrical outlet. The Sunny Health SF-T1407M uses manual propulsion. All you need to get a good workout in on this treadmill is a pair of AA batteries to operate the LCD console.
This non-electric capability is ideal for saving power. It also gives you the flexibility of where to put the treadmill. You don't need to use any extension cords or locate your treadmill near a wall outlet. You can also get in a workout if the power goes out.
RV enthusiasts and campers can also take this lightweight treadmill on the road. Despite being a manual, non-electric machine, there is still a battery-operated LCD that tracks speed, time and calories burned and steps. Check price here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I buy a cheap treadmill?
While a lower price is always nice, you don't want to buy a low-quality treadmill. If it breaks down within a few months, you will end up paying more in repairs or replacements. The treadmills listed here are all selected based on their quality and reliability. There are even cheaper options out there, but we can't recommend them.
Does motor power matter?
Motor power on a treadmill matters for two reasons. One, the horsepower of the motor dictates how much speed that you can propel the deck. The horsepower on your treadmill motor also has a relationship with how long it will last, especially when used at maximum speeds.
Which belt size should I choose?
Belt size depends on how you use your treadmill. Long stride runners need to be cautious of getting a belt too short. People with stability issues should also choose a wider belt. Belts between 18 and 20-inches wide and 48 to 55-inches long can usually accommodate most stride lengths.
Should I buy a folding treadmill?
This is a question that depends on personal circumstances. If you ever envision needing to put the treadmill in a location where you wish to reduce the visual impact and footprint of the machine when not in use, it is highly recommended you buy a folding treadmill.
Is it worth it to have a treadmill at home?
Even the most competitive runner has been forced to skip a training session because it was freezing cold or pouring down the rain. Owning a treadmill means you'll never have to worry about heat, cold, rain, or snow. You can train when you want and how you want.
Can I use a treadmill to lose weight?
Walking, jogging, and running are three of the best ways to burn calories. Treadmills are safe and stable ways to accomplish all three. Treadmills allow you to ramp up the intensity by changing speeds and incline as well. You can burn away excess weight by using a treadmill.
The Final Verdict
Putting a treadmill in your home opens up all sorts of opportunities. You can train when you want, wear what you want, and train how you want. You don't need to spend thousands on a model with all kinds of gadgets and accessories.
These seven options we've reviewed for you are strong, but less-expensive treadmills. With a full-size console, excellent speed range, plus a strong frame, the Merax JK1603E puts a lot into a treadmill under $300. It has certain extras and accessories usually reserved for pricier treadmills.
You can hit speeds up to 10 miles per hour, and the deck is wide enough to provide stability and long enough to accommodate most stride lengths. All seven are super treadmills under $300, but the Merax takes our blue ribbon based on price, features, and performance.