In this Report:
Best arm blood pressure monitors | Cheap arm blood pressure monitors | Talking arm blood pressure monitors | Best wrist blood pressure monitors | Buying guide | Reviews
Types of Blood Pressure Monitors
These blood pressure monitors
most closely resemble what you'll see used at your doctor's office, with a
flexible or semi-rigid cuff that sits around your upper arm. Users sometimes
struggle to get the cuff positioned correctly on their own arm, but this type
of home blood pressure monitor lets you sit with your arm in a natural position
at your side, and is generally less finicky about positioning than a wrist cuff
If you have limited vision or just prefer to listen
than read, a talking blood pressure monitor will be very helpful. They
generally "speak" in loud, clear voices, and often speak multiple
languages in addition to English. They are also just as fully-featured as
traditional blood pressure cuffs.
Those who feel that arm blood
pressure monitors pinch uncomfortably, or who have trouble finding an arm blood
pressure cuff that fits well might prefer a writs blood pressure monitor. However,
this type of monitor is notoriously finicky about positioning; you must hold
your wrist across your chest at heart level. If you're just a few inches off or
don't hold perfectly still during the reading, you'll get inaccurate results. The
good news is that the best wrist monitors have lights and signals to help you
with the correct alignment.
Home blood pressure monitors are
a handy health tool
If your doctor wants you to track your blood pressure -- or if you want
to be proactive and track it yourself -- you're going to need a blood pressure
monitor you can use at home. Visiting your doctor to have your blood pressure
taken every single day isn't really practical, and the public-use blood
pressure cuffs located in some pharmacies can get out of calibration, resulting
in inaccurate readings.
Monitoring your blood pressure at home doesn't take the place of medical
consults, but, when combined with your physician's measurements, home
measurements can be a powerful tool for taking control of your health. All of
the home blood pressure monitors discussed in this report are automatic,
digital models -- they inflate themselves and take the reading for you, usually
at the push of a single button. The entire process takes about 30 to 50
No matter what sort of blood
pressure cuff you get, experts recommend taking it to your doctor's office for
comparison against medical-grade equipment. That gives you a baseline for
determining how accurate and consistent your home monitor's measurements really
You must also read the
manufacturer's instructions and follow them closely in order to get accurate
readings. We have yet to see a home blood pressure monitor that doesn't receive
a noteworthy number of complaints about accuracy, and it's a sure bet that
those complaints often stem from incorrect use.
Finding The Best Blood Pressure
We evaluated dozens of expert
ratings and thousands of user reviews to determine which blood pressure
monitors display the best accuracy, ease of use and comfort, with enough features
for any type of user. The most useful expert sources included
ConsumerReports.org, MedicalNewsToday.com and TheSweethome.com. Owner reviews
were especially plentiful at Amazon.com, but the retail sites Walmart.com,
Walgreens.com and BestBuy.com offered plenty of useful feedback too.
See our reports on blood glucose monitors and digital thermometers for other items that can
round out your home health kit.
The best arm blood pressure monitors
Of all the upper-arm blood pressure monitors we evaluated, the wireless (Est. $65) receives the most consistently positive ratings. Owners say this
model is easy to use and very accurate; it also receives top ranking for
accuracy and convenience from a leading consumer research laboratory, and is
the top pick at TheSweethome.com, which tested it against nine other blood
The Omron BP786N's many useful features include a built-in calibration
check system; a TruRead mode that takes three consecutive readings one minute
apart, then displays the average; an irregular heartbeat detector; and two user
accounts, with storage for 100 date- and time-stamped blood pressure readings
Its most impressive feature, however, is the BP786N's Bluetooth
compatibility with iOS and Android mobile devices. Once you download the free
Omron Wellness app, you can access, share or chart your readings from anywhere,
or import them into the Apple Health app. One unexpected benefit of this
wireless capability is that the sight-impaired can have their phone read the
results to them out loud.
Despite all that functionality, you don't have to have a smartphone or
tablet to use the Omron BP786, and many users appreciate its simple operation:
All you really have to do is press the brightly colored Start/Stop button. The
large, backlit screen is easy to read even for those with limited vision. User
reviews of the Omron BP786N are almost universally positive, while reviews of
its Bluetooth capability are mixed (but still quite good): It typically pairs
with iOS devices quickly and easily, but may take a few tries to connect with
your Android device, and not every Android device is supported.
The BP786N's ComFit cuff spans the range of a medium to large cuff, fitting
arms from 9 inches to 17 inches (23 cm to 43 cm) in diameter. Once you get the
adjustable cuff set up just right, you can slip your arm in and out of the
uninflated cuff easily -- no need for a second pair of hands. The BP786N is
covered by a five-year warranty, can be run off 4 AA batteries in addition to
AC power, and doesn't have any notable durability issues.
If you have large upper arms, your best choice is the (Est. $100) home blood pressure monitor. The cuff on this monitor fits arms
between 16.5 and 23.6 inches (42 to 60 cm) in circumference, and users love the
way it's slightly tapered to provide a better fit.
Users also say this blood pressure monitor is durable -- some have had
theirs for several years with no problem -- and most say it's quite accurate
when compared against a manual blood pressure cuff in their doctor's office.
The LifeSource UA-789AC has a fairly simple range of features: It
detects an irregular heartbeat, stores up to 60 blood pressure and pulse
readings in memory, and has a large, easy-to-read display. It runs off an
included AC adapter or four AA batteries (not included).
The best cheap arm blood pressure monitors
If you want a simpler blood pressure monitor, there are a few viable
alternatives that still offer accurate readings, but cost less than their
One top budget pick, the (Est. $40) upper-arm monitor, which is
sold exclusively through Walmart, can store up to 30 readings in each of two
user accounts. The readings for this unit are marked with a date and time
stamp, which can help reveal trends in your blood pressure readings over time.
"It's affordable and simple enough for most people to use,"
writes Stacey Higginbotham for TheSweethome.com, where the ReliOn BP200 is
selected as the top budget blood pressure monitor. Owners agree, saying the
ReliOn BP200 is easy to use straight out of the box, and it receives an accuracy
rating of Excellent at ConsumerReports.org. Its cuff fits arms 9 to 17 (23 cm
to 43 cm) inches in circumference, and a larger cuff is available for purchase.
A few years ago we noticed a rash of durability concerns with the BP200, but
more recent user reviews indicate that the newer versions of this home blood
pressure monitor hold up well.
Another highly rated, inexpensive blood pressure cuff, the (Est. $45), also receives an Excellent accuracy rating
from ConsumerReports.org, and users say it's very precise. Those owners are
even more pleased, however, with the monitor's most notable feature: It
measures your blood pressure as the cuff inflates, instead of pumping the cuff
up to a set pressure and then measuring your blood pressure as it lets the air
out. This helps eliminate the discomfort and -- in extreme cases -- bruising that
some associate with upper-arm blood pressure cuffs.
The EW3109W's sparse selection of features includes one-touch inflation,
a large, easy-to-read display, and a 90-reading memory capacity for one user.
However, the readings aren't marked with a date or time stamp.
Excluding the issue with the memory function, owners say the Panasonic
EW3109W is fast and easy to use. It's backed by a two-year warranty and can
accommodate arm circumferences of 7.75 to 15.75 inches (20 to 40 cm) with the
default cuff; you can also buy a (Est. $30) that
fits arms of 13.75 to 17.33 inches (35 to 44 cm). The EW3109W runs off four AA
batteries (included) or an optional AC adapter, which can be purchased
So: If you're particularly sensitive to the discomfort of using an
upper-arm blood pressure cuff, your best choice is the Panasonic EW3109W. If
you have large upper arms, go for the LifeSource UA-789AC. For a bargain that
still offers the very handy feature of date- and time-stamped readings,
consider the ReliOn BP200. And if you want the general all-around
best-performing, feature-rich monitor that also happens to be smartphone
compatible, go for the Omron 10 Series BP786N -- but be prepared to spend a little
quality time with its owner's manual before you're able to use all its
A blood pressure monitor for the whole family
The (Est. $50) memory capacity is the highest of any we saw while compiling
this report, and earns it kudos from testers at TheSweethome.com.
It can store up to 60 time- and date-stamped readings in
each of four user accounts, so the entire family can use the same machine if
need be. The cuff is also flexible enough to fit most people -- from 8.6 to
16.5 inches (22 to 42 cm) in arm circumference.
This blood pressure monitor also earns an Excellent score
for accuracy at ConsumerReports.org. Everyday users laud the A&D's accuracy
too, saying that it lines up well with the readings taken in their doctor's office.
The A&D 767F tracks your average pressure readings over time and adjusts
the inflation accordingly. It's nicely compact, too and easy to carry around in
its soft-sided, zip-close case.
Not everybody is a fan of the A&D 767F's comfort and
usability though, despite its Very Good comfort scores from
ConsumerReports.org. "Its comfort and ease of use was polarizing among the
testers," writes Stacey Higginbotham for TheSweethome.com, who also notes
that during tests when she deliberately moved around during testing, the 767F
tended to flash an "irregular heartbeat" warning at her instead of
warning that she was moving too much, as it is supposed to.
The A&D 767F comes with a five-year warranty and runs
off 4 AA batteries, with an optional AC adapter for purchase.
Talking blood pressure monitors for
those with limited vision
For those who have limited vision
or can simply make better sense of what they hear instead of what they see, the (Est. $75) talking blood pressure monitor will read your
results to you in English, French or Spanish. It also coaches you through
avoiding common errors when taking your blood pressure, explains what the
reading means, reads off your pulse, and will tell you out loud if it detects
an irregular heartbeat.
User reviewers say this home
blood pressure monitor is easy to use, and its "speaking" voice is
loud and clear, so elderly patients have no problem hearing it. Initial
feedback about the LifeSource UA-1030T's accuracy is positive, although reviews
of its preformed cuff are mixed; some people love it, while others struggle to
find a way to put it on themselves. The cuff fits arm sizes from 9 inches to
14.6 inches (23 to 37 cm).
The LifeSource UA-1030T stores up
to 90 time- and date-stamped readings in memory for one user, has an optional
feature to calculate the average of three blood pressure readings, and can be
set so it doesn't squeeze your arm unnecessarily hard during readings -- a
great perk for physically frail or uncomfortable patients. It comes with a
carrying case, can run off either AC power or 4 AA batteries, and is backed by
a 5-year warranty.
The best wrist blood pressure monitors
Some people have a hard time
finding an upper-arm blood pressure cuff that fits well, or find the whole
process of having their arm squeezed to be very uncomfortable. If either of
these sound like you, you might have a more pleasant experience with a wrist
blood pressure monitor, which most users say are a lot more comfortable than
upper arm monitors.
The biggest downside of wrist
monitors is that you must have them positioned just so, every single time, to
get accurate and consistent readings. Our best-reviewed model, the (Est. $55), makes that easy with lights that signal proper positioning: orange
when the monitor is out of position, blue when it's lined up correctly. You can
also set it to give audible guidance signals.
The BP652N draws very good accuracy
ratings from a leading consumer research organization, and quite a few owners
say they've compared it with their doctor's equipment and found it to be very
accurate. However, all of that is dependent on mastering the learning curve
that goes with its positioning guidance system.
The BP652N stores up to 100 date-
and time-stamped readings, alerts you if you have an irregular heartbeat,
automatically shows how your blood pressure compares to international
guidelines, and can average up to three readings taken in a 10-minute span. The
Omron BP652N comes with a storage case and is covered by a five-year limited
warranty, although we found a few comments that customer service is so-so --
generally responsive, but not always very helpful.
The Omron BP652N receives Excellent
comfort scores ConsumerReports.org, a sentiment echoed by the thousands of
users that have reviewed it. However, a few of them are disappointed to see
that a recent update to this model replaced its semi-rigid wrist cuff -- which was
easy to get on and off your own wrist -- with a soft, flexible cuff that is a
bit more challenging to get just right. Still, most say it's still much easier
to handle than an upper-arm blood pressure cuff.
Omron also offers a basic wrist
model, the (Est. $45). It doesn't have the
advanced guidance system, but it can calculate the average of your last three
recent readings taken within 10 minutes, and most users say it's quick, easy to
use, and accurate as long as you master the proper positioning. The BP629
stores up to 60 date- and time-stamped readings and is covered by a two-year
warranty. Both the Omron BP652N and the Omron BP629N run on 2 AAA batteries.
It's not reviewed or tested for accuracy by in any
professional tests, nor does it get quite the high ratings from users of the
Omron, but, if you'd like to spend less money and get more features, take a
look at the (Est. $35). This wrist monitor comes with some very user-friendly features,
including large, easy to read digits and a screen that lights up green, orange
or red to tell you if your blood pressure is normal, borderline high, or high.
It also detects irregular heartbeats, averages your last three ratings for
accuracy, and stores an impressive 399 readings for each of three user
accounts, all time- and date-stamped.
Some users voice the same concerns about positioning for
this unit that we see for any wrist blood pressure monitor. However, most note
that if they follow the directions carefully and pay attention to the lights
that help guide proper placement, their readings match up well with those of a
doctor or nurse. The Ozeri BP2M wrist blood pressure monitor is covered by a
five-year warranty, and users say Ozeri's customer service is very good about
replacing defective units and offering support in general.
All three wrist blood pressure
monitors come with one-size-fits-most cuffs; the two Omron models accommodate a
wrist circumference of 5.25 to 8.5 inches (13 to 21 cm), and the Ozeri model
accommodates wrists 5.3 to 7.6 inches (13.5 to 19.5 cm) in circumference. All
three blood pressure monitors also feature one-touch operation, run off two AAA
batteries (included), and come with a storage case for easy blood pressure
readings on the road.
What the best blood pressure
- Keys that are easy to use, and a display that's easy to
read. Some models offer extra-large
displays, illuminated buttons and voice-announced readings. Home blood pressure
monitors with Bluetooth capability also give you the option of reading your
results off your smartphone's screen, or having it read the results to you.
- Circuitry that detects -- and compensates for -- an
irregular heartbeat. Some blood
pressure cuffs will alert you to an irregular heartbeat; a few can also
compensate so the irregularity doesn't skew your blood pressure readings.
- A cuff that fits you. If the cuff on your blood pressure monitor doesn't fit
your arm or wrist, it can't give accurate readings. Some blood pressure
monitors let you change the cuffs out, so you can use the same monitor on
people of different sizes.
- The right
amount of pressure. There's no getting
around a brief squeeze from the cuff of your blood pressure monitor, but the
best models use relatively gentle pressure to avoid turning a simple reading
into a painful ordeal.
memory. The best blood pressure
monitors store at least 90 readings in memory -- enough to log three months of
daily blood pressure measurements.
user accounts. If several people are
using the same blood pressure monitor, they each need their own account for
logging readings and calculating averages. Some also use this feature to log
readings for their right arm and left arm separately.
feedback. Some blood pressure cuffs use
color-coded results or flashing numbers to indicate whether your readings fall
into healthy, borderline, or unhealthy ranges. This makes it easier to put your
blood pressure into context at a glance.
- An averaging
function. Experts say that averaging
consecutive readings -- or averaging your blood pressures as logged over a
period of time -- can give you a better picture of your cardiovascular health
than single, isolated measurements.
- Help with
proper positioning. Wrist blood pressure
monitors only return accurate readings if you hold them in just the right
position, and learning to do that can be a challenge. The best wrist monitors
use flashing lights or other feedback devices to help guide your hand into the
Do you plan
to travel with your blood pressure monitor? If so, choose one that comes with a carrying case or
pouch, and that can be operated with either battery power or an AC adapter.
Is more than
one person going to use the cuff? If
so, you must either purchase a monitor with multiple user accounts -- so you
can each store your readings separately -- or buy one that doesn't
automatically store readings, so you don't end up with your blood pressure logs
Are you and
your doctor wired in? A growing
number of blood pressure monitors allow you to upload your log of readings
directly to your doctor. If neither you nor your doctor make use of such
capability, you can save some money by buying a simpler unit.
for owning a blood pressure monitor
recommend taking your home blood pressure monitor to your healthcare provider
when you first buy it, so your healthcare provider can test the monitor against
medical-standard equipment to determine its accuracy. Take your blood pressure
cuff back in every six months to re-check its accuracy, and have it checked
immediately if you drop it or if your readings suddenly change dramatically.
pressure cuffs that transmit data directly to an app on your smart phone are
becoming increasingly common. Just a few short years ago this was novel, new
technology, but it's now on the verge of becoming a standard feature on
high-end blood pressure cuffs, and, as with most wireless technology, will
probably soon be the norm at all price points.
Blood Pressure Monitor Reviews - Our Sources
- ConsumerReports.org - Blood Pressure Monitor Ratings, Editors of ConsumerReports.org, Not Dated
in the Consumer Reports laboratory test two dozen home blood pressure monitors,
including both arm and wrist models. Each model receives ratings for accuracy,
convenience and comfort, along with a few very brief comments on its
performance, plus an overall comparative rating out of 100. Ultimately, four
upper-arm blood pressure monitors are recommended.
- dabl Educational Trust - Sphygmomanometers for Self-measurement of Blood Pressure (SBPM), Editors of dabl Educational Trust, As of February 2017
Educational Trust compiles a lengthy list of blood pressure monitors, assigning
each a Recommended, Not Recommended or Questionable status. The table also
lists whether each device is certified by the Association for the Advancement
of Medical Instrumentation, the British Hypertension Society and the European
Society of Hypertension, and briefly notes the circumstances under which the
devices may or may not be used.
- TheSweethome.com - The Best Blood Pressure Monitors for Home Use - Stacey Higginbotham, Jan. 6, 2017
The author and a team of testers spent 20 hours researching more than 50 home blood pressure monitors, eventually narrowing the field to 10 models that were then tested with the help of professors and students at the University of Texas Nursing School. The author provides thorough documentation of the testing process and selects a top pick that should suit most people, along with runners-up for specific concerns.
- MedicalNewsToday.com - Home Blood Pressure Monitors - Reviews of the Best, David McNamee, July 7, 2015
The author subjects four blood pressure monitors to hands-on testing. Although he doesn't assign comparative scores, he does discuss the relative merits and quirks of each monitor, discusses how easy (or difficult) it was to use them for the first time, and occasionally quotes company stands on specific features.
- Amazon.com - Blood Pressure Monitors, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of February 2017
Amazon.com offers hundreds of listings for home blood pressure monitors and a plethora of user reviews, some of which can be quite detailed. Some users even return to update their reviews over time, giving a good picture of the product's long-term durability. Some of these blood pressure monitors have hundreds or even thousands of reviews.
- Walmart.com - Blood Pressure Monitors, Contributors to Walmart.com, As of February 2017
Walmart.com lists a wide variety of blood pressure monitors for sale. Many models have received hundreds, if not thousands, of user reviews, although these sometimes include user reviews reposted from the manufacturer's website. As at Amazon.com, some models recieve hundreds of reviews.
- Walgreens.com - Blood Pressure Monitors, Contributors to Walgreens.com, As of February 2017
User reviews at Walgreens.com tend to be brief and to the point, which makes them useful for gauging overall customer reaction to any given product. Most blood pressure monitors for sale here get at least a few user reviews; we chose standout models that receive an average score of 4 stars or better after at least half a dozen user comments.
- BestBuy.com - Blood Pressure Monitors, Contributors to BestBuy.com, As of February 2017
This gadget-friendly retail site offers several dozen blood pressure monitors for sale, and is a particularly good source of reviews for "smart" blood pressure monitors. The most noteworthy monitors listed here receive an average score of at least 4 stars after 10 or more useful owner reviews.