Your Definitive Guide to Loft Ladders
Posted on 7th December 2021 at 13:53
Thinking of getting a loft ladder installed and need to know what’s out there? Looking to upgrade your old ladder to a shiny new one? You’ll find the answers to these and many more questions below…
Your introduction into the exciting world of loft ladders!
Let’s paint a picture. It’s a cold Saturday morning in early January, circa 1987, and your dad decides it’s time to put the Christmas decorations away in the loft. Because you’re a young go-getter (and your dad’s terrified he’ll break his back and miss work) it’s your job to somehow get into the loft and haul up that old dust-covered box filled with baubles and fairy lights.
Out comes the low-quality step ladder from the garage and you apprehensively set it up under the loft hatch. You then proceed to undertake what could arguably be one of the most dangerous things to do inside a home! Whilst precariously balancing on the top step of the ladder, you have to open the hatch and then haul yourself up hoping your skinny arms won’t give up in the process. You then scramble around for the light switch, find what you need whilst trying not to breathe, and manage to get yourself and the decorations up without breaking your ankles.
Does any of this sound familiar to you? Well, it doesn’t have to be like that any longer folks. Up there with the invention of satellite dishes, mobile phones and electric nose-hair trimmers is the mighty loft ladder. There are some really good purpose-designed loft ladders available, that not only make getting into your loft safer but are also extremely easy to use.
What do we know about loft ladders?
The Loft Access Company was founded in 2006 to help people make more of their loft spaces and that includes accessing the loft. We encountered that scenario above all too often and so we built this company to provide a better solution. We carry out all projects related to the loft space, from the supply and installation of loft ladders from £179 plus vat, to full loft conversions, loft insulation, boarding, lighting and window installations.
There are big cost-saving benefits to getting your loft kitted out with proper insulation, boarding and a decent means of accessing it. Space is at a premium for most people so utilising every bit of it just seems like a no-brainer to us.
We’ve put this guide together to give you as much knowledge as possible about loft ladders so that you too can go and get your loft sorted!
Do I really need a loft ladder?
If you have a loft and are still risking life and limb to get in it then yes, you should probably consider a decent ladder. Loft ladders have come a long way since the early days. Quite a few of the ones we install are spring-assisted and come with handrails which makes extending and climbing very easy.
Choosing the right loft ladder
The choice is often based upon preference and how cautious a climber you are. There are also many situations where the decision is more or less made for you due to restrictions with clearances in the loft and the room the loft hatch is positioned in. However, the majority of these restrictions have been handled through the design of some pretty impressive loft ladders.
At The Loft Access Company we like to put the ladders we install into two main categories, independent and integrated. Independent ladders are supplied without hatches so those need to be installed separately. Integrated ladders come with a hatch that’s supplied by the manufacturer and which is attached to the ladder. These types of ladders can be quicker to install since there’s no need to construct a separate hatch.
There is also another category of loft ladder we seldom work with which are called wall or vertical access ladders. These types of ladders are more commonly required in commercial premises. If you already know that you need this type of ladder just get in touch with us.
And to make our lives even more interesting we then categorise our ladders further into the following:
Folding Loft Ladders: This type of ladder is becoming increasingly popular with people who want to make good use of their loft space. These ladders come complete with a fully integrated loft hatch casing. This is normally pre-mounted onto a fully insulated and draught-proof white trapdoor. That makes it a good choice for anyone looking to save on heat loss and cut out the overhead of painting. The folding action of these ladders also means that when stowed they don’t take up much space. Typically the ladder sits directly on top of the loft hatch trapdoor when stowed. This saves valuable loft floor storage space. They also come in either timber or steel construction. These types of ladders may require a longer hatch than you currently have so it’s important to take note of their specifications before making your choice.
Sliding Loft Ladders: This is a popular type of loft ladder and it’s ideal for those looking for a simple means of access to their loft. It’s designed for occasional domestic use so if you’re planning on using the loft every day – or even a few times a week – you’ll need something more robust. These loft ladders usually work independently from the loft hatch trapdoor, and as is common, are operated using a pole supplied with the ladder. One of the big downsides of sliding ladders is how much space they take up in the loft. The cheaper models can also feel quite flimsy which would make a lot of people feel unsafe whilst climbing.
Telescopic Loft Ladders: Telescopic loft ladders are a very advanced type of loft ladder through their unique design and operation. This unique telescopic design allows for this type of loft ladder to be installed into the tightest of spaces and they require minimal space within the loft when stowed. This type of loft ladder boasts an absolutely smooth and effortless operation. The 90mm deep treads make climbing comfortable and more importantly, safe.
Concertina Loft Ladders: Concertina loft ladders were designed for lofts with limited space around the loft hatch. This type of loft ladder, when in its stowed position, sit directly above the loft trapdoor. As a result, they are a solution for a loft hatch that is tight to a wall or anything else that may be an obstruction.
Electric Loft Ladders: Electric loft ladders provide an alternate solution to your access issues. Fully automated, both the ladder and hatch will descend and ascend at the gentle push of button, requiring no manual effort at all. Each ladder is provided as an integrated hatch and frame, creating a sleek finish on both sides of the hatch door. Each ladder also has deep, wide treads for a steady climb - each therefore suitable to be used on a regular basis. An excellent form of access to a hobby room or home office! Each ladder is operated via a handy remote, however the Fully Automated Folding Timber Ladder listed can also be operated via your smartphone or tablet with a Bluetooth adapter accessory.
Whether you want to book a survey, get a quote or simply ask any questions on loft ladders or anything else related to all things loft – do get in touch.
The Loft Access Company have over 22 years’ experience in all things loft related - including installing loft insulation. If have any other questions or would like to book in a no-obligation survey, please get in touch. Thank you for reading!
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