Lots of people think that they have to pay a high cost to buy a good treadmill or best cardio machine.
Of course, they are right.
But if you have an idea to order the best treadmill for home under $500, it is still possible.
Here I’m going to show you a list of the best choices that LessConf has researched as well as consulted other customers’ reviews.
As long as you follow me from the beginning, LessConf is sure you will easily find the most suitable model.
It is time to uncover.
9 top picks of the Best treadmill under 500 for Home
The NordicTrack T 6.5S is one of the best-selling and affordable treadmills in the health and fitness industry due to its good selling points.
My first impression is its 20 different built-in workout apps with a variety of exercises. Simply hit a button while you are running or walking, and then you can move on to the next stage without scrolling through options like the others.
The next cool thing that I rather enjoy is the CardioGrip heart rate. When gripping the handle, this unit will display your heart rate so that you can check it anytime you want.
What’s more, NordicTrack introduces another impressive feature – called iFit. Not only does it replicate real-life training via Google Maps but it also provides many useful programs.
However, you need to buy it separately, and the price is not low.
How about the motor?
The 2.6 CHP motor runs quietly with a speed range between 0.5 and 10 mph, allowing it to deal with the maximum weight capacity of 300 lbs with ease.
And thanks to the incline ranging from 0 to 10%, you can increase your workouts to burn more calories.
With all that said above, the NordicTrack T 6.5S is a great treadmill for home/apartment use. Of course, it is a good bargain for the price compared to other competitors.
- Sturdy frame and deck
- Easy to store thanks to a folding design
- Nice and easy-to-read display
- Good cushioning to lower impact
- Quiet when operating
- More workouts to exercise
- Easy to control with a single button
- Good warranty
- Not included iFit, need to buy separately
- A bit hard to assemble
- Unstable belt at low speeds
If you need a folding treadmill that has a stable construction, safe design, and modernized high-tech functions, the ANCHEER treadmill is the right choice.
Take a look at its silicon damping design for a running board. This system helps to lower the level of impact all over the belt and protect your joints while walking or running.
Thanks to twelve pre-set programs, three manual incline levels, and a maximum speed of 9 mph, you can experience lots of options for a different workout. Though some aren’t interested in adjusting the incline manually.
This machine also supports an advanced app that is available for both Android and iOS via Bluetooth connectivity. Connect it to any device you want, and then open G-Fit to control everything.
Another small yet essential feature that makes me notice the ANCHEER treadmill is all about storage.
Since it comes with a hydraulic folding and soft drop system, you don’t need to worry about hurting the floor or taking the weight when unfolding or folding. Everything will be a piece of cake.
- Quiet and powerful motor (2.25hp)
- Good heart sensor
- Easy to store
- Easy to connect with a Bluetooth smartphone app
- Nice shock-absorbing system
- The belt might get loosened at some point
- Some dislike the manual incline function
As a popular brand of home cardio equipment, ProForm rarely makes treadmills lower than $500. But the machine I reviewed here, the Performance 300i is one of the most affordable ones.
In case you worry about its quality, I’m sure that this unit will satisfy you with its pro features.
Let me talk about storage first!
With a SpaceSaver design, you easily fold it and keep your home clutter-free when you aren’t exercising. Of course, you can move it from here to there without encountering any difficulty.
As its name suggests, the maximum capacity is 300 lbs and offers a running area of 18 x 50 inches. But I recognize that if you are a tall runner, you will find this unit is lack of space. Perhaps, it is suitable for average heights at this price.
Additionally, the 2.0 CHP motor, 16 built-in workout apps, and 10% quick incline control allow you to enjoy different exercises for various parts of your body. You can even perform something harder to get the best shape.
And thanks to a large display, you can see different kinds of data such as speed, distance, and other data. Though some complain that the data of calories doesn’t work well.
- Sturdy for an affordable price
- Easy to set up, use, and store
- Good capacity of 300 lbs
- Quiet operation
- Perfect for small places
- Abundant program settings
- Amazing warranty
- It is not ideal for taller people
- Calorie counting is not accurate at some point
- The Bluetooth app needs a paid subscription
The next “contestant” in this list is another folding treadmill from SereneLife brand.
While using this machine, I’m sure you won’t get bored since it provides FitShow sports app that you can access via any device. Aside from experiencing different fitness sessions, you even create your own one.
All the necessary data are also shown on the LCD screen display so that you can check it with ease. It not only displays your running data but also mentions things like how many calories you have burned, distance covered, running time, etc.
And if you want to adjust the speed settings, control the built-in grip sensors on the handles.
However, when it comes to the motor, it is not powerful enough (only 1.5hp), especially for serious runners. In case you look for a more relaxing routine or exercise when watching a movie, it will be a perfect deal.
One more fantastic feature that this treadmill offers is an integrated safety key. By pressing it, the power will be cut instantly, protecting you from unexpected damages while working out.
When your training session is done, you easily fold and store it away thanks to the support of soft drop system.
- Compact, lightweight yet sturdy
- Easy to assemble, about 15 minutes
- Easy to move and store
- Good sports app connection
- Smooth operation, not too loud
- Safe to use with an integrated safety key
- The motor is not powerful enough
- You have to adjust the incline manually
- The belt sometimes pauses at lower speeds
Among folding treadmills from XTERRA Fitness, the TR150 is one of the most affordable and small machines that offers high performance, flexibility, and is specially designed for home use.
It is made of top-quality heavy gauge steel, making it a durable unit. But, when it comes to the running surface (16 x 50 inches), it seems not to be ideal for those wanting to improve their stride.
How about the motor?
Thanks to a 2.25 hp motor, this product is suitable for light-leveled running workouts. Together with a speed range between 0.5 and 10 mph, it also offers the possibility to find the perfect pace when you are exercising.
And don’t worry about the speed of the belt since you can adjust it smoothly.
By offering 12 different pre-configured workout programs, you can exercise at various level of intensity. From less challenging physical workouts, you can control the options for more intense ones with a simple touch.
Wonderfully, it offers three incline options that can be manually adjusted to assist your workout demands and change the level of intensity for each exercise.
- Sturdy and well-made
- Clear and concise instructions to set up
- Large and easy-to-read LCD screen
- Easy to fold up and move around
- Extra-soft cushion deck for maximum impact absorption
- Quiet and smooth motor
- Easy to control the speed
- The length of the running surface is not ideal for tall people or those with long legs
- Some still dislike the manual incline
- The treadmill needs to be lubricated every 40 hours
Another good entry-level treadmill that guarantees quality and longevity belongs to the Black Jaguar III from Goplus.
Similar to the XTERRA Fitness TR150, this model is made from high-quality steel that can hold up to 250 lbs. It also features a 2.25 hp motor, and it is, of course, quiet while operating.
Twelve different workout options have been included, giving enough versatility for your training session.
The real drawback that I recognize is the lack of speed. Although the 7.5 mph speed limit might be suitable for the endurance athlete, it is not the best when combined with the interval exercise.
If the above model boasts the large LCD, this one has the same feature. But it is blacklight. That means you can exercise in the dark and check all your stats with ease.
One more outstanding point that I enjoy when researching this product is its safety key.
By attaching it to your clothes, you can easily turn off the treadmill by unplugging it. This guarantees you to remain protected if you get any undesired stumbling. Or you can hit an emergency stop button on the handrails for double protection.
- Sturdy and durable
- Bright and easy-to-read LCD
- Simple to set up, use, move and store
- Easy to adjust the speed
- Quiet in moving
- Safe to use with a safety key and emergency stop button
- Good cushioning design to lessen noise and vibration
- Electronics are not accurate
- The tread bed is still narrow and short
- The speed is a bit low
If you are interested in SereneLife brand but can’t afford the above model, the SLFTRD18 smart folding exercise machine here will be your best pick.
Belonging to the lightweight treadmills, this unit looks solid and it is possible to hold users weighing more than 265lbs. The handles are also broad enough to use when exercising.
But the belt of 39.3 x 13.4 inches is not suitable for large people or those with long legs.
Similar to the previous machine, this one offers the FitShow sports app to simplify your process of training. It also allows you to make the workout more interesting and informative.
Of course, you can check any information such as heart rate, the number of calories burned, etc. while exercising thanks to the large LCD screen.
Besides, a safety key is included for the emergency stop. For instance, if you don’t have enough strength to continue working out and then suddenly stop, the track will stop, and you won’t fall back.
Overall, the SereneLife SLFTRD18 is perfect for walking, jogging, and light running in the comfort of your home/apartment. Importantly, it delivers good value for your tight budget.
- Compact and lightweight, perfect for small places
- Large weight capacity
- Safe and practice use
- Excellent sports app
- Easy-to-read and understandable instructions
- Quiet and smooth operation
- Best bang for the buck
- Not ideal for serious runners
- Short track
- Low motor (only 1hp)
Sunny Health & Fitness is known as a premier brand of high-quality equipment. But with the SF-T7603, this company sets a new standard in the fitness and health industry.
This unit offers all the essentials for a productive cardio workout with a reasonable price (it is the same compared to the SereneLife SLFTRD18).
So, let’s check what it has.
It features a 2.2 hp peak DC motor with a decent running surface of 16 x 49 inches. However, I found some complaints that a few machines have belts with a tendency to slide at first. Please check carefully.
Unlike other models in the same price range, this one provides handrail controls that allow you to Start, Stop, Adjust Speeds, and Measure Your Pulse Rate easily.
With nine built-in workout programs and three adjustable incline levels, you also get the versatility for adjustment of fitness intensity. Plus, an LCD digital monitor helps to track your session by measuring and showing all the important data.
Thanks to an advanced shock absorption system to prevent exhaustion in your body and legs, you can complete your workout without any stress.
- Easy-to-follow instructions
- Easy-to-use handrail controls
- Portable wheels for simple transportation
- User-friendly digital screen for tracking
- Safe to use with a magnetic key
- Reasonable price
- Some treadmills have belts with a tendency to slide
- The cup holder is quite small
During my search, I recognized that many people voted the Weslo Cadence G 5.9 as an affordable treadmill with all the necessary features. And it has all elements you might want, including folding design, incline levels, and robust motor.
This machine comes with a space-saver design and can be folded to free up more space after you are completed with your exercise. The continuous-duty motor also offers a high-speed range between 0.5 and 10 mph.
Although it provides six pre-set workouts, each was made by certified personal trainers. And they will help to burn your fat as well as motivate you. While exercising, it automatically adjusts the incline and speed.
Speaking of the incline levels, you can simply control it for a more challenging training session as other machines. But some are unsatisfied with only two positions.
One more excellent feature that I also want to mention is the Comfort Cell cushioning system. It is helpful to lessen stress on your joints and lower body as well as increase workout comfort when you are exercising.
- Ideal for average users
- Easy to put everything together
- Quiet operation
- Easy-to-lower incline level
- Essential digital screen to track every data
- Comfortable cushioning
- Limited incline and pre-set workouts
- No bottle or device holders like the others
- Some prefer a backlit screen
Benefits when using a treadmill at home
When you have an idea of buying a treadmill for home, that means you know what advantages this machine offers.
But you still worry that paying a high amount of money to get the high-quality treadmill is better than choosing the low-budget one from the list above.
If you are wondering about this issue, let me explain why these products are useful.
Safe, convenient, and private
A BIG benefit that comes along with a treadmill is its safety.
Since it is a piece of indoor equipment, you don’t need to leave your house to run on the road or sidewalk. This is true for women who are sensitive to harassment when running alone.
Besides, convenience is another BIG plus. Instead of visiting a gym to exercise, owning a treadmill allows you to walk, jog, and run at home any time you want.
Of course, working out at home on your own equipment is private if you don’t like people seeing you while you exercise.
The expensive treadmills often weigh a ton and occupy more space.
If your room or apartment is small, the best thing is to consider a less expensive folding machine. It is compact, lightweight, easy to fold and store when you are not using.
And this leaves you more space to add other accessories like a yoga mat, free weights, etc.
Easy to assemble
Setting the more expensive treadmills will be harder than the cheaper ones since they have lots of parts. Sometimes, you need to pay an extra cost for hiring an expert to do it.
Meanwhile, most of the machines that I reviewed above are easy to put together. Usually, you spend about 30 minutes to complete and then start your workout.
Easy to use
These treadmills are extremely easy to use and require no effort to operate.
All you have to do is to hit some buttons on the console, select the options you want, and begin your training session.
Even if you don’t know how to use it, read the manual and follow it.
Easy to get in shape
As long as you exercise every day, you will soon get in shape and maintain good health.
- Weight loss – The main reason people invest in this equipment is to burn calories by running, resulting in weight loss. The longer and quicker you run, the more calories you will burn, and finally, the more weight you lose. (I will mention the best workout to lose your weight in the next part, so keep reading, please)
- Heart health – Whenever you start exercising with your treadmill, your heart will grow stronger while your blood pressure will get lowered. And this also lessens stress and prevents bad cholesterol.
- Muscle building – The muscles in your leg will build up when you run. That means the more you run, the stronger your muscles will get. Moreover, running helps to build up your arm muscles since you tend to swing them while exercising
- Joint flexibility – Using a treadmill is necessary to keep your joints flexible and moving. In case you have arthritis, it is an excellent way to decrease pain and keep yourself healthy.
Key considerations before purchasing a low-budget treadmill for home
The task of buying the perfect treadmill to suit every demand is indeed a challenge.
Although you might get the one you want right after reading the first product from the list, this is far from the truth.
That’s why I hope you should not miss this vital part.
Below are essential factors that you must consider when buying the most suitable treadmill for yourself.
The first and foremost thing that you should consider is the tread belt.
A standard treadmill often comes with 16 inches wide and 45 inches long, and these numbers seem to fit ordinary people to run. But if you want to get the maximum output from the treadmill, it is best to opt for the one with a big running area.
Additionally, make sure the deck is firm and stable while you walk or run on it. More importantly, it should offer enough cushion to lessen hip and knee discomfort.
Depending on your workout style, you need to find suitable horsepower.
For instance, if you need to walk on your treadmill, a 1.0 hp motor is enough. In case you want to jog or run with a speed of 4-6 miles per hour, you should find the treadmill with a 1.5 or a 2.0 hp motor.
Meanwhile, a motor of 2.5 hp or above will be an excellent choice for those who need to run regularly.
A treadmill under 500 means there will be limits, particularly in its weight capacity.
Since these machines in this range might support up to 250 pounds, it is fine if you are not a heavy user.
However, if your weight is up to 300 pounds, you should check carefully before ordering. In case you weigh above 400 pounds, the best thing is to search for models with the price above 500.
Although most less expensive treadmills are easy to fold, you need to understand about this process clearly.
If your living place is small to store, you should opt for the machine with a compact design. In case you want to move it frequently, the best thing is to find the model with wheels.
NOTE: all of the products above have the folding design, so you can stay secure when selecting any.
If you want to take your workouts to a whole new level, you should look for the treadmill that is set at an incline.
Not only does this feature accelerate your training session but it also helps you prepare for hikes by stimulating the feel of running or walking uphill.
There are two types, including manual incline and motorized incline.
- With motorized incline, you can alter the incline of the running area without any interruptions.
- With manual incline, you need to stop your workout to adjust it.
Depending on your different needs, different models offer appropriate features like a pre-set workout program, heart rate monitoring, shock absorption, Bluetooth connectivity, MP3/iPad compatible sound system, etc.
It is because these features, in some way, increase your workout experience.
Heart rate monitor
Selecting the treadmill with the heart rate monitor is truly necessary.
By setting the minimum and maximum heart rate relied on your fitness level, height, weight, gender, and age, this function will automatically modify the speed you want for losing weight or developing endurance.
The last important thing when buying a budget treadmill is its longevity and durability of use. To protect your product, I suggest you should find the one that has an extended warranty offer.
If the warranty is for a few months, you need to check another model.
Or you can consider other brands that deliver a replacement warranty in case the machine does break down.
1 – What is the best treadmill workout to lose weight?
Here LessConf will make a workout plan for those who want to lose weight within six weeks.
Week 1 – Basic workout
At the beginning of the treadmill workout routine, the best thing is not to push yourself too much and get familiar with it.
- Firstly, warm up about 10 minutes by light walking so that you get used to the running area of the treadmill.
- Then set the incline at 0% and begin to walk at a speed of 1 mph within 2 minutes.
- After that, increase the speed by every mph until it reaches a maximum of 5 mph.
- Walk for about 10 minutes, lessen the speed back to 1 mph, and continue to walk for 5 minutes before finishing.
- If you want to increase the time from 15 to 30 minutes, you should begin with a speed of 2mph and reach as high as 7 mph.
Week 2 – Incline workout
This week is for something challenging.
- First of all, you need to set an incline of 2% and a speed of 3 mph. Then start light-walking for 5 minutes.
- Continue to set the incline at 3% and a speed of 3.5 mph and walk for the next two minutes.
- Next, increase the incline by 1% and speed by 0.5 mph for the next two minutes until reaching an inclination of 7% and speed of 5.5 mph.
- Later, cool down about 5 minutes with an incline of 2% and speed of 3 mph.
Remember to reduce the incline levels and speed slowly when you are going to complete the workout.
Week 3 – Sideways workout
Aside from focusing on losing weight, you should not miss strengthening your thighs, hips, and calves.
- Warm-up by light walking at a speed of 1 mph within 5 minutes.
- Then turn to the right side and walk sideways at the speed of 1.5 mph about 1 minute before switching to the left side for 1 minute.
- After that, continue to turn to the right side again. But you should increase the speed of 2 mph and perform within 1 minute.
- Do the same for the left side.
- When completing, start face forward and do forward walking at the speed of 4 mph for 2 minutes.
- Repeat until you complete a 25-minute session.
Week 4 – Alternate walking and jogging workout
After spending three weeks, you now recognize it is easy to exercise on your treadmill for 30 minutes.
That’s why this week you need to increase your endurance by extending the time (about 45-50 minutes).
- In the fourth week, you need to change alternatively between walking and jogging. For instance, you begin with a speed of 3 mph and then slowly raise the speed to 8 mph to jog (note: only perform it if you think you can handle it).
- After jogging for 5 minutes, you should turn back to the speed that you walk for the next 2 minutes.
- Then turn to jog speed for the next 5 minutes and return to walk for some minutes.
- Repeat this session at least 45-50 minutes.
Week 5 – Sprint interval workout
This exercise is famous for its advantages regarding progress in sports performance and quick results in fat loss routine.
- Always warm up by walking about 5-7 minutes.
- Then start sprinting for the next 20 seconds. Remember that your main objective is to attain 80-90% of the heart rate.
- Later, get back to walking for the next 2 minutes.
- Continue to sprint for the next 20 seconds, followed by 2 minutes of walking.
- Perform within 30 minutes.
Week 6 – Total workout
In the last week, it is best to accommodate all the methods above.
- At first, you need to warm up for 5 minutes.
- Then start side walking on each side within 2 minutes.
- Next, sprint for 10 seconds, followed by 1 minute of walking.
- Repeat this session at least 5 minutes.
- Additionally, you can increase the incline level by 2% for every session.
- And don’t forget to get a 5-minute cooldown after completing to lessen blood in your legs.
2 – What is the best brand for the treadmill?
While considering to buy the treadmill for home use, another essential factor is to look for the brand.
Luckily, most of the treadmills above belong to well-known manufacturers. Hence, you feel secure when picking any of them.
Also, I show some necessary information about these brands so that you have a good view.
- NordicTrack is a leading brand and a part of the Icon Fitness group, which is one of the world’s biggest manufacturers of fitness equipment. It offers a vast range of exercise products with different prices in stores and online.
- ProForm is a budget part of the Icon Fitness group. That’s why this brand always delivers exercise equipment at lower prices than other manufacturers.
- Similar to both brands above, Weslo also belongs to the Icon Fitness group. Its treadmills often cost less than $500 yet have the features you can find in the expensive models.
- XTERRA is produced by Dyaco International, a company in Taiwan. All of the treadmills from this brand are designed for home use at an affordable price.
Overall, each brand comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. Of course, the models from these brands have their own pros and cons.
In my opinion, the key is to find what best fits your demands.
3 – Which is the best treadmill to buy?
It is quite tough to answer this question since everyone has different demands when it comes to buying a treadmill.
However, I assure you that all the products above are carefully chosen. Make sure you know what you need so that you can find the good one.
Or you can keep reading this post to know my personal choice. And if you agree with me, you can ORDER it immediately.
4 – Which treadmill has the best cushioning?
As mentioned above, choosing the treadmill that is cushioned is necessary to reduce the impact on your joints as well as the risk of injury.
Among the equipment above, I recognize that the NordicTrack T 6.5 offers an excellent FlexSelect cushioning that works well in lessening pressure on the joints.
Or you can consider the GoPlus Black Jaguar III. This unit boasts four silicone pads with two on each side. Not only do they support your joints well but also lower noise and vibration to the floor.
The XTERRA Fitness TR150 is also useful for maximum impact absorption thanks to its XTRASoft deck cushioning technology.
5 – Do treadmills have weight limits?
Yes, they do.
The weight limit is the maximum weight that a treadmill can manage.
Usually, a low-budget treadmill specifies a weight limit from 200 to 300 lbs. Meanwhile, a higher-end model offers a more forgiving weight limit from 300 to 500 lbs.
6 – Are treadmills bad for your knees?
No, absolutely not.
They only prevent injuries from hurting as long as you use them in the right way. In case you work out and feel hurt, that means you are doing wrong.
Since everyone has various reactions to physical activity, the best thing is to ask your physician for advice.
Editor’s choices of the best treadmill for home
All of the treadmills reviewed above are excellent in their own ways, and they are suitable for those with a tight budget.
However, if you cannot determine which one is the best for you, you can consult my suggestion.
My first top pick is the NordicTrack T 6.5S.
Although this equipment is still expensive compared to the others on this list, you will soon recognize that it is worth investing.
With 20 built-in workouts designed by a certified trainer, each controls the speed and time so that you can attain your fitness goal. Moreover, it is iFit compatible that you can access for unlimited workouts.
The motor and incline are the most outstanding features to increase your training session.
Or you can consider my second selection – the XTERRA Fitness TR150 folding treadmill.
If you are interested in light-leveled running, this machine with a 2.25 hp motor is a perfect deal. Together with 12 pre-set workout programs, you have a chance to exercise at different levels of intensity.
Just KEEP IN MIND that this product is for average users, not for tall people since its running area is 16 x 50 inches.
Get the treadmill on your own now
LessConf has shared what I researched the best treadmill for home under 500.
So, do you think that my recommendations above are suitable for your needs?
If yes, BUY it instantly.
Or you can reread the remaining machines above and pick the one you want most. Don’t worry since I have chosen them depending on high customer ratings and reviews.
The bottom lines?
Having a treadmill at home is an excellent way to guarantee that you can work out at any time you want, regardless of the traffic status or weather conditions outside.
As long as you bring a treadmill to home, your heart will say “THANKS” to you.
And don’t forget to tell me your own experience after buying or ask me anything you still wonder
I’d love to hear from you.
Once again, thanks for reading.