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If you are thinking about using your attic for storage, you need to get an attic ladder. You can look at the different kinds of pull down attic stairs and ladders that are offered on Amazon. Descriptions are available for each type of ladder on the site.
There are different factors to keep in mind when you are selecting attic ladder.
One of the most important considerations to make is the location of the ladder. The attic ladders are usually designed to fit in an existing frame in your ceiling.
The kind of framing in your attic will also determine which ladder is most appropriate. The most common framing options are 2x lumber and trusses. The 2x lumber is more flexible and will suit any kind of ladder.
You also need to think about orientation and spacing when you are selecting pull down attic stairs. The kits are usually designed to fit in a 24 inch framing. If your framing is larger than this, you need to make some adjustments. This is simple with 2x framing.
The length and weight of the attic ladder should also be a factor. There are different lengths and weight capacities. The length of the attic ladder you get should be determined by the distance between your ceiling and floor. It is advisable to get a sturdy ladder that can handle heavy individuals. The ladders are usually made of steel, wood or aluminum.
With available reviews on Amazon it is very easy to select the correct and reliable attic ladder. They even offer FREE shipping, so don’t forget to check out Amazon for the best available attic ladders.
Your Guide to Buying Attic Ladders
When you are in the market for attic ladders, you should look to this guide for some helpful tips on choosing the right one for you. You will want to consider the most obvious basics: type, location of the ladder, framing, insulation, size, and weight capacity. We will walk you through the process of this so you can begin to learn about all of the options available to you as a consumer.
Types of Attic Ladders
There are several types of attic ladders that you can choose from. It would help you know which kinds are the most popular, and which are the easiest to install for your situation. Top pull down attic stairs are commonly used in homes that have little space to store a ladder. The tighter the space, the more of a need you will have to condense the product. That’s why telescoping ladders were made, so they can maximize space in a safe and compact way. These are pulled down by one segment of rungs at a time and are mounted on the ceiling of the attic.
Besides using a retractable ladder, you could choose to use an accordian staircase. This type has hinges at each tread, making it foldable at each spot. If you could picture a drying rack that you hang clothing on, then you will have a good idea of what accordian stairs look like. These can be compressed and stored in the attic hatch. Being a popular option for older homeowners and those with physical ailments, the accordian with handrails is convenient and comfortable to use.
If you are hoping to get away from the common aluminum or steel ladders for your attic, then you could get a wood one. The only option you may have if you want to use wood, however, is folding attic stairs. These look similar to normal ladders, since the angle they lean at is about 64 degrees. You can fold these at two joints, usually, making it less compact. Wood can also be used to make what’s called “disappearing stairs,” which don’t fold in the same way. These slide along mounted tracks in the hatch, and they can have handrails. This is a nice option for people who want the safety of an accordian staircase but are possibly looking for a less expensive product.
Unique Features of Attic Ladders
How are attic ladders different from other types? Besides the obvious function, these products can have many other features that you wouldn’t even need when using a standard ladder for usual purposes. Some are made with insulated doors in order to keep air from escaping between the attic and floor level below. This helps you save on heating and cooling costs in both the winter and summer seasons. Keep in mind that you can also choose to do weatherstripping foam around the attic door frame to keep the air in separate spaces, as well. That do-it-yourself method might save you hundreds on your purchase!
Mechanisms like springs or gas cylinders are sometimes put into place to allow ladders to fold or pull-down. Have you ever seen these on a standard painter’s model? In addition to these great features, some pull down attic stairs and ladders are very well-suited for large capacity and heavy use. Some are rated for up to hundreds of pounds for capacity, so you can be sure of its sturdy support. Depending on your budget, you could be able to afford one with load capacity of 700 pounds or more. Standard wood and aluminum models can usually accommodate 300 to 350 pounds, and they are much less expensive at this level of load. Expect to spend several hundred more dollars if you want anything sturdier and moveable.
If you have a small opening to your attic, have no fear. There are special ladders designed for the tightest of spaces. This is great news for people who own old homes with tiny openings to the attic level. Since attic openings can vary in size, it’s important to check the specifications of the product you are looking at in particular. You have a better chance of success if you look at this information ahead of time, saving you a trip to the store or extra shipping costs for having to return the ladder. Spaces as small as 22 inches across are able to accommodate small ladders, so if you have an opening around this size, then you should be able to use a standard one.
Depending on what brand you choose to go with, you may have a difficult time installing pull down attic stairs or ladders yourself. Hopefully you will look to some of the most popular reviews on this site for a better idea on which will be easiest for you to install. Some people are more handy than others, which means they may not have as hard of a time setting up one. There are a variety of ladders that are manufactured to be easily installed with one person’s effort. You still may wish to ask for the help of a friend, just to be on the safe side. These are heavy objects and require some sort of strength and balance.
Help with Buying and Installing Your Attic Ladder
Need some more help with choosing the right one for you? Our website has plenty of reviews on the most popular models available today. Fortunately, many of them can be found easily on the Amazon.com website, so you can order yours and have it in no time. Be sure to check that the specifications meet your needs before you make a purchase.
We recommend that you get in touch with a professional if you feel that you need help with installing or prepping your location for installation. Sometimes the framing may need to be worked with, or other issues like size and orientation may even come into play. If you ever have any doubts, please ask someone for help. Installing your new attic ladder should be a safe and successful project!