If you just want to walk or do some light jogging, reviewers say a good-quality $1,000 machine like the ProForm Power 995 is more than adequate. Most owners are happy with this treadmill's smooth performance and interactive features, but reports of poor customer service drag it down.
Smooth and powerful, but noisy. "You can't go wrong with this one, very happy I took the leap," writes one Amazon.com reviewer who's thrilled with the ProForm Power 995's performance. Most users who love it want a machine that withstands walking or light jogging. While its belt is louder than most other treadmills, they say it's pretty quiet overall. Still, a few owners complain about the noise. "The belt makes a whining/whistling noise, which is louder than I expected," says one.
The Power 995's 20-by-60-inch treadbelt is impressively large for this price range, and it earns excellent marks in a comparative expert test for its ability to accommodate users of different sizes. It can handle a user weight of up to 325 pounds according to ProForm, and "does not shake or squeak," says one 231-pound user.
In general, the Power 995's belt and 3.0 continuous horsepower motor both operate smoothly. However, one 180-pound walker who uses a 12 percent or higher grade says the motor struggles to maintain proper speeds at high inclines. The treadmill has a maximum incline of 15 percent and adjusts up to 12 mph using quickset controls.
iFit rock star. The ProForm Power 995 is compatible with Nike+, but that's eclipsed by its compatibility with iFit Live. Paired with a wireless Internet connection, iFit Live enables interactive features like racing against other iFit Live users, or following a course simulated by Google Maps; the treadmill automatically adjusts incline to match the terrain. However, owners must purchase an additional compatibility module (*Est. $100), or pay $60 for the unit to sync with an iPod plus a yearly subscription fee (*Est. $149) to access the iFit Live service.
iFit aside, Power 995 owners like the ProForm's touchscreen controls and 20 preprogrammed workouts: 10 for calorie burn and 10 targeted toward performance. Still, none of the options are completely customizable; any changes made to a program apply only to the current workout segment. The fan is noisy compared to others and "really does not blow much," says one user, and the handgrip heart-rate monitor isn't very accurate. But according to Fred Waters of Treadmill-Ratings-Reviews.com, the speakers aren't bad.
Amazon.com users post varying opinions of the Power 995's assembly instructions; some testify to their clarity while others say they're confusing and the pictures are too small. Both camps agree that you should commit several hours and recruit a helper. In addition, some say the console is sometimes scratched or cracked out of the box, and other parts don't fit together easily. One owner adds that the treadmill flipped the circuit breaker just a few seconds after installation.
Sturdy frame is a high point. While the ProForm Power 995 receives average scores for its construction in one comparative test, owners compliment its stability. There's a dearth of comments regarding long-term use, but short-term feedback is generally positive; one user posts on Amazon.com that "after a few months of use, it still works like day one." A reviewer who used to deliver and assemble treadmills for major retail outlets says, "the frame is extremely sturdy."
Hard-to-contact warranty department. Customer service is a sore point for the ProForm Power 995. Although it comes with an excellent warranty -- lifetime frame and motor, three years for parts and one year for labor -- owners say it's very hard to reach the warranty service department. "Calling customer support is a lesson in how NOT to do customer service," writes one on Amazon.com. "Reaching the warranty department is a problem…they are NOT going to answer your call," says another, who recommends trying to reach the warranty department as an experiment before you buy this treadmill. The Power 995 gets just 3.5 points out of 10 for its warranty coverage from TreadmillDoctor.com.
Review Credibility: Excellent ConsumerReports.org subjects 49 treadmills including the ProForm Power 995 to mechanical testing designed to simulate a year of regular use. Human testers also evaluate the units on criteria such as comfort, ergonomics and usability. Although several Best Buy and Recommended picks are awarded, only brief ratings are given for each treadmill.
Review: Treadmill Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, As of October 2012
2. Treadmill-Ratings- Reviews.com
Review Credibility: Very Good Fred Waters, a former executive with Smooth Fitness, calls the ProForm Power 995 a Best Value Buy. He likes its spacious treadbelt and motivating features, including iFit Live and Nike+.
Review: ProForm Power 995, Fred Waters, As of October 2012
Review Credibility: Very Good About 35 Amazon.com reviewers give the ProForm Power 995 an average rating of 3.8 stars out of 5. They praise the treadmill as "uber quiet," with a firm, sturdy feel and lots of features. A few owners say assembly can be challenging, but they're very pleased with their purchase overall.
Review: ProForm Power 995 Treadmill (2012 Model), Contributors to Amazon.com, As of October 2012
Review Credibility: Good TreadmillDoctor.com is one of the most prolific expert treadmill review sites on the Internet. Here, editors call the ProForm Power 995 a "beautiful unit," and give kudos to its impressive technology and touchscreen. No details on the review ratings are given, only a basic chart.
Review: ProForm Power 995 Treadmill Review, Editors of TreadmillDoctor.com, As of October 2012