What are the Best Treadmills Under $500? Our Top Picks

So you want to buy a treadmill, and you have a bit of wiggle room with your budget to put out a good chunk of cash for a quality piece of equipment. Whether you want the convenience of a home gym or the option to skip outdoor workouts, you will be able to find a really nice treadmill under $500, allowing you to do other things with your leftover fun money.

You know the story of Goldilocks, right? Goldilocks is all about the “juuuust right”- as it pertains to treadmills, an under $500 option is not too expensive/fancy, and not too cheap/limited, but instead it offers plenty of features and capabilities while still being cheap - cue the “juuuust right.”

That being said, being "right" for you depends on what your unique needs are and what you're seeking in a treadmill. So here's a deeper look at what you can expect from the best treadmills under $500...

The Pros and Cons of Treadmills Under $500

We recently wrote an article about the perks and limitations of buying a treadmill under $200 (yep, that’s a real thing!). If you’re looking to bump up the price range to under $500, here’s what you’ll get from moving to the next price bracket: a little more incline adjustability, the ability to go faster with the option to jog as well as run, and basic tracking features for calories, speed, etc.

Here’s the catch on being the Goldilocks treadmill; while yes, you can find under $500 options that will give you more incline range, it’s usually only up a few degrees and not what you may be accustomed to, like 15-20 levels on commercial treadmills like the ones you find at the gym.

And, if you’re working on sprinting or running at high speeds, this probably is not the best price range for treadmills for you. However, if you’re a fitness hobbyist looking for occasional hill pushes and fast jogs, then you won’t have any issues with a mid-line treadmill.

Also, you may be looking to create a walking desk so you can walk while you work on your computer or read, and this price range gives you lots of options that will make for an awesome active working setup.

If you fit that profile above, then you are ready to skip down to the reviews and check into what the best option is for your needs. But, if you’re still curious about whether you can swing a treadmill under $500 that includes everything you want, let’s reiterate what might hold you back.

First, you need to be sure you have adequate space, as this upgrade from the under $200 models typically means that the treadmill is wider and longer for better function. Get out that tape measure and check the dimensions of your home gym! Again, if you want to run at high speeds or want to do interval training that requires auto incline controls, the under $500 treadmill likely will not work out for you.

This price range also does not typically include options that have fancy bells and whistles, like speakers, iPod connectors, or fans. And finally, your body size may stop you from getting one of these treadmills; if you are taller/weigh more, you may need a longer belt or a treadmill with a heavier weight capacity.

What are the Best Treadmills Under $500? Our Top 5 Picks

All right, now that we’ve nailed down the specifics of who these Goldilocks treadmill treasures will serve, let’s get into the fun part - shopping! Here are our reviews of the best treadmills under $500, starting with the Top Three.

Weslo Cadence G5.9 Folding Treadmill

best treadmills under 500
best treadmills under 500

This mid-line treadmill is coming in hot for only $287! Check out the product specifications:

  • Machine dimensions: 10 x 31 x 68 inches
  • Machine weight: 119 pounds
  • Weight capacity: 275 pounds
  • Maximum speed: 10 MPH
  • Incline: 2 options
  • Foldable: Yes

Okay, where do we begin with what we love? For starters, this treadmill is lightweight and thin, plus collapsible and foldable for easy storage.

It will give you the perfect framework for challenging workouts, as it can go up to 10 MPH (that’s a fast jog!) with 2 incline settings, and 6 pre-programmed workouts (made by personal trainers).

One really cool feature is how it allows you to take short rest breaks (on those pre-programmed workouts) but then speeds back up to its original setting - it’s like having your own accountability partner! At the gym, most treadmills stay at the new "lower" setting during the whole workout if you adjust the speed for a short break, which is not very motivating.

Also, this treadmill is really quiet, even at the higher speeds. It comes with a thumb heart rate monitor and a display that tracks time, distance, and calories, too. The icing on the cake is how easy it is to put this treadmill together - less than 30 minutes and you’ll be ready to workout! Read user reviews!

Sunny Health and Fitness Treadmill

best treadmills under 500
best treadmills under 500

Another space-saving midline option comparable to the Weslo model, this treadmill is priced at $299, thanks to a few upgrades. Let’s get the basic product stats out of the way first:

  • Machine dimensions: 18.3 x 26.8 x 62.2 inches
  • Machine weight: 119 pounds
  • Weight capacity: 220 pounds
  • Maximum speed: 9 MPH
  • Incline: 3 options
  • Foldable: Yes

If you’re big framed and/or heavier, be sure to note that lower weight capacity PLUS the fact that the belt is pretty narrow and may be uncomfortable. However, if you’re average size and under 220 pounds, then this is an awesome treadmill.

With a max speed of 9.0mph and three different incline settings, the real standout option in this treadmill is the number of pre-programmed workouts it includes - nine! That is great news for people who don’t like to make up their own routines and rely on guided expertise to create the framework for a challenging but manageable workout!

It comes with a nice-sized LED display that tells you the basics plus has an optional Body Mass Index (BMI) reading. It also comes with a smartphone/iPad stand, which allows users to easily watch shows or read while you’re running or walking. Similar to the Weslo, this treadmill is easy to put together and runs smoothly and quietly. Read user reviews!

Exerpeutic TF1000 Electric Treadmill

best treadmills under 500
best treadmills under 500

This is the best option for those a bit heavier or larger in stature; check out the difference in product stats, especially weight capacity:

  • Machine dimensions: 32 x 51.2 x 62.2 inches
  • Machine weight: 120 pounds
  • Weight capacity: 400 pounds
  • Maximum speed: 4 MPH
  • Incline: 2 options
  • Foldable: Yes

A bigger treadmill that holds more weight, it does not add any extra weight to the total, keeping it easy to move around or put away for storage. It does price a bit higher at $396, but that’s thanks to its high-quality construction for a durable, sturdy treadmill.

There’s another key difference in this treadmill - it only goes up to 4.0 mph, so you will only be able to get a brisk walk on this machine. No jogging, no running - are you thinking what we are? Treadmill desk! It’s a great option for walking while you work.

Also, it has two manual incline positions, so you’re a bit more limited on this too - but not much, as its competitors only have three incline adjustability levels. If you don’t convert it to a treadmill desk, then you’ll have the benefit of nice long sturdy handles, plus a great display set up that tracks your basic workout stats and has a water bottle holder.

Whether you want a walking desk or just need a reliable walking treadmill, the size and weight capacity of this Exerpeutic make it a really great option. Read user reviews!

While the next two did not make it into our Top Three, they are definitely worth mentioning as runners up!

Confidence Power Trac Pro Electric Treadmill

best treadmills under 500
best treadmills under 500

A compact, economic mid-grade treadmill ($219!), this Confidence model gives you the best of the basics plus some really cool extra features. Here is the baseline info:

  • Machine dimensions: 24 x 49 x 47 inches
  • Machine weight: 52 pounds
  • Weight capacity: 265 pounds
  • Maximum speed: 10 KPH (6.2 MPH)
  • Incline: 2 options
  • Foldable: Yes

One of the major perks in this model, in addition to its lightweight and compact size, is that it includes 12 built-in fitness programs and also four quick-start buttons with pre-set speed. It can go up to 6.2MPH, which is a slight jog, but it tracks in Kilometers Per Hour (KPH), so you may have to keep your calculator handy for conversions!

One critique is that the installation guide and user manual could use some TLC; the assembly instructions are not totally clear, and there is not a lot of info on the pre-programmed workouts. But if you can live with that, then it’s definitely an awesome space saving economy treadmill that will give you a great workout. Read user reviews!

Weslo Cadence R5.2 Treadmill

best treadmills under 500
best treadmills under 500

Very similar to the Weslo 5.9 above that made it to our Top Three, this treadmill is a bit costlier at $329. The major key difference is the weight capacity: The G 5.9 has a max weight limit of 275 pounds, whereas the 5.2 comes in slightly lower, with a 250-pound weight limit. Otherwise, the basic specifications are exactly the same (weight of unit and measurements).

One thing to point out is that this treadmill can be used for slow jogging, unlike most of the others reviewed, and even for faster jogging, if your body size and weight allows for it. It goes up to 10.0 MPH, and it includes six pre-programmed workouts.

It also is a space-saver model, so it can be folded up and stored easily. The only real critique is that it seems to be noisier than most similar treadmills in this price point, but if that doesn’t bother you, you’ll be happy with this overall sturdy, functional treadmill. Read user reviews!

Good luck as you shop for your Goldlilocks treadmill! Let us know if there’s another “unicorn” model out there that we missed, or if you love one of the units that we suggested!

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