Important Things to Know about Platform Ladders
Many of us have to use ladders on a regular basis. Even if you are not a construction worker or an electrician, you have to use these climbing devices to change a light bulb or reach higher shelves. When it comes to selecting the right ladder, you have to be aware of a few important things about ladders. The goal of this post is to help you make an informed decision when buying a platform ladder.
First of all, ladders are of different styles, and you must be able to select the right style. What is the right style for your project? You must think about it and choose one that helps you get the job done. In other words, the type of your project will determine the type of ladder you need.
The ladder you choose should be able to provide safety when you stand or clime. You may need to deal with a fall or injury if you choose the wrong kind of ladder. Apart from basic step and extension ladders, there are some other types such as scaffolding, tripod, telescopic multi-ladder, twin step and platform. To find the one you need, it is a good idea to learn about all these types of ladders.
When choosing the right ladder, another important fact to consider is the height of the ladder. Extension ladders can be extended to according to your needs, but you must check the sturdiness of extension ladders. These ladders are long enough to be used to reach the top of a wall or a roof line.
If you read the instructions for using ladders, you will find that there is a highest permitted standing level. For most ladders, this level is 2-3 steps down from the top. If you stand higher, you may lose your balance. If you use a four-foot ladder, you can safely reach up to 8 feet.
Different ladders are designed to hold different amounts of weight. That is why you need to consider duty ratings when choosing ladders. A ladder’s maximum safe load capacity determines the duty rating. Your weight plus the weight of the materials and tools must not be more than the duty rating.
People use ladders for various purposes. So when you choose ladders, you must have a clear idea of what you are going to do with the ladder. If you are looking for a work platform ladder or an adjustable platform then you will likely be looking for something which has more durability and is more sturdy for safety.
To select the right ladder, you have to consider both the weight and the work application. You have to make sure that the ladder is designed to handle the weight it is going to receive. You may initially find the terminology of duty ratings, ladder grades and types a bit confusing, but understanding the terminology is a must in some cases. The maximum safe load capacity is referred to as duty rating. Duty ratings are usually given in pounds such as a 400 Ib.
It is also important to select the right material of the ladder. Why do you need to know about the material used to make the ladder? The reason is simple. You can tell a lot about a ladder when you know what material it is made from. Ladders are usually made from two materials: aluminium and fibreglass. While both of these materials have their advantages and disadvantages, we recommend you choose one made from aluminium.
There are a few more advantages of using ladders made from aluminium. Yes, selecting the right material is to some extent a matter of personal preference. But you also have to be practical. If you need to work with electrical wires, an aluminium ladder is not the best choice. But if there is not risk of contact with electrical wires, you can safely use an aluminium ladder.
Now you know what to look for in ladders, and hopefully you will make an informed decision when choosing a platform ladder.