Weslo Cadence R 5.2 Review

Editor's Rating: 4 /10

The Weslo Cadence R 5.2 is a very low-budget folding treadmill. Sale priced at just $299 (MSRP $499), it’s one of the cheapest treadmills on the market. Unfortunately the unusually low price is explained by very low quality, but this review can help you decide whether the R 5.2 is “good enough” for your at-home cardio training.

To help walkers burn calories more efficiently, the Weslo Cadence R 5.2 has a track ramp. The ramp can be adjusted manually to a 15% tilt. This automatically increases calorie burn compared with walking flat at the same speed. Six training programs that use different speed and incline settings are built into the console, and progress is shown on an LCD. The feedback provided are speed, time, distance and calories.

For many reasons Weslo Cadence treadmills are designed only for walking, not running. From a runner’s perspective the three major limitations of the R 5.2 are a short track, low horsepower and a low top speed: The specs are a 50″ x 16″ track, a budget-quality 2.25 HP motor and a top speed of 10 mph. Another disadvantage is the deck, which is poorly cushioned compared with decks on good treadmills for runners. Finally, the treadmill weighs less than 120 pounds and becomes unsteady at higher speeds.

Weslo Cadence treadmills have especially short warranties. The warranty for the R 5.2 treadmill varies depending on the vendor, but the typical parts and labor warranty for this unit is just 90 days. For comparison, most treadmills priced at $500 and up have parts and labor warranties of at least one year.

What We Like:

  • Compact Design: The Cadence R 5.2 Treadmill is a lightweight, compact machine weighing well under 200 pounds. As with most other Weslo treadmills, this design feature makes it easy to move the machine around and use it in smaller spaces.
  • Easy Assembly: Customers can pay for set-up service, but this treadmill is designed for relatively easy setup in about an hour. The manual advises that two people are needed, but most customers report that it can be a solo job.
  • Preset Workouts: Six workout programs are included to help beginners make the most of workout time. The programs can automatically adjust the track speed.
  • Price: Low price is a top selling point for the R 5.2. This treadmill has a $499 MSRP and often sells for just $299 at Amazon.

Weslo Cadence R 5.2 Treadmill - Key Specs:

Star Rating:2-stars
Motor:2.25 HP
Incline:Manual Incline
Running Area:16" x 51"
Top Speed:10 MPH
Weight Capacity:250 LBS
Dimensions:64.5" L x 55.5" W x 29" H
Built-In Programs:6
What We Don’t Like:

  • Very Small Track: The exercise area is 16″ wide and 50″ long, which is very small even for petite women. Standard treadmills for walkers have 20″ x 55″ tracks at minimum.
  • Noisy: Weslo Cadence treadmill belts are not only small, but also thin. The thin material contributes to noisy operation, especially at higher speeds.
  • Manual Incline: The incline has two manual settings. Treadmills with power-adjustable inclines are more convenient to use and can add variety to each workout session.
  • No Extras: Weslo Cadence treadmills lack the special “club-like” features found on better home treadmills, such as beverage holders, cooling fans, smartphone ports and speakers.
  • Not Portable: Although this treadmill has a foldable track, it isn’t designed for easy portability. Customers have complained that because the machine is built from lower-quality parts, it can become rickety when moved across a room for storage.
  • Warranty: Standard warranties for Cadence treadmills are very short. Coverage for this model varies with the vendor, but at most a shopper gets a one-year motor warranty and a 90-day parts and labor warranty. Low-priced extended warranties are available.

Our Verdict:

Weslo Cadence treadmills are built for newcomers to cardio training. They aren’t designed for running, and they aren’t promised to endure through many workouts. Although the Cadence R 5.2 has a very low up-front cost, it quickly becomes expensive in terms of maintenance requirements. This treadmill isn’t very kind to the body in terms of ergonomics either, and it lacks any distinguishing qualities like engaging programming or console conveniences that would bump it up from a two-star rating.

We advise choosing a different treadmill — even a different treadmill under $500 — for better value. Jumping up to the $500-to-$999 category will present you with significantly better options.