Because not all things and surfaces in the house are at a suitable distance for our height, in every household it is good to have a simple ladder, made of aluminum, for repairs, maintenance or access to hanging cabinets. Find out in this article what types of stairs are available and how each of them helps you.
Stairs made of aluminum are durable, lightweight and available in a variety of formats. You can use them to take objects from high shelves, to whitewash, repair the roof or clean the trees in the orchard. Here are the most popular types of products in this category and when it is good to choose a certain format.
Models designed for less demanding and occasional use actions, which do not involve the support of a very high weight or an above average height to which they must allow access, are considered stairs for household or residential use. There are the versions you buy either to reach the last shelves in the pantry or those of the kitchen cabinet built up to the ceiling, to change the light bulb, whitewash the ceiling and walls, etc.
You usually find them in two constructive variants. The most common are those with two sides, which do not need to be supported by the wall, being stable without a point of support. Some models allow climbing on both sides, others have steps only on one side, the other playing only the role of maintaining stability.
You will find in this category versions that make you think of a chair, with two steps, the last of which is common to both sides, allowing climbing as you would on a stool. But you can also buy them in variants with three, four or even 8 steps, usually designed for higher apartments or houses, or exterior works.
There is also a range of single-sided options that must be supported by the wall. They are lighter, but need a flat, non-slip surface to ensure very good stability.
The universal models are intended for both domestic use and professional operations, but of medium level. What does this thing mean? The versions cataloged in this category help you to reach higher heights than the hobby ones, up to 7–8m, without being as long as the professional ones. At the same time, they safely support weights of up to 190–100 kg, which allow you to climb on them with medium weight materials and tools. They include one, two or three sections and are durable and easy to use.
In the category of professional aluminum stairs you will find options that can ensure you access up to heights of 10–12m. At the same time, the best versions can support tools, materials and equipment up to 170kg, raising to the next level the working conditions in which they can be used.
They are designed for construction, electrical repairs, etc. and are significantly more expensive than the rest of the options. A longer length also means that they are even heavier and more difficult to transport and store, which is not very recommended for home use.
Telescopic or articulated
This feature refers to the system used to make aluminum stairs adjustable in height and easier to transport and store. The telescopic versions allow the sections to slide over each other when the ladder is tight, effectively reducing the size of the product. We recommend these options if your home is not too generous in terms of space and you need a model that you can gather as efficiently as possible.
The articulated variants allow the folding of the sections with steps, one on top of the other and although the principle seems similar, we can tell you that they occupy a little more space, in a tight format, than the telescopic ones.
Simple, double or multifunctional
The simple, straight format, which requires wall support, gives you the lowest weight per unit length offered. In other words, if you want to reach a tall tree, on a pole or on a roof, such a model will be twice as small and lighter than an A type designed for the same height. It will also take up less space and will be easier to transport.
The weak point of simple models is represented by the situations in which you simply do not have something to support it, but only the surface of the ground, a concrete slab or the floor. In this case you don’t have much choice and you have to use an A-shaped model, which will ensure the stability you need.
Some of the A-shaped aluminum ladders include a simple extension section, thus combining the advantages of both formats. You will sometimes find them in the category of multifunctional versions along with articulated variants that can be transformed into a work platform. When are they useful? Think that you have to plaster the attic on the outside and you have to sit for a few hours at height. What is simpler? To sit perched on a simple ladder, supported by a wall or on a horizontal platform, on which you can have the work materials at hand?
One, two, three or four sections
Sections are compact successions of steps separated or delimited by a connecting point, which allows folding or sliding to extend or narrow the ladder. A section usually has between 2 and 14 steps.
As a general rule, if you need access to a higher height, you will want a ladder with longer and longer sections, and if you only need a small model for the house, we recommend a version with fewer and smaller sections .
The larger number of sections usually means the possibility to store and transport the ladder more easily, because it allows more efficient packaging. At the same time, we recommend that you carefully check the connection systems between two sections because they directly influence the resistance of the ladder.
Narrow or wide steps
Although it is not really a criterion to divide the stairs made of aluminum into distinct categories, it is good to consider this element as well. The wider step options are designed for comfort, and because they directly influence the weight of the product, you will usually find them in smaller household models.
In the case of professional versions, the emphasis is on light weight, strength and mobility, and less on comfort, so although the steps are solid and often with a grooved surface to prevent slipping, they are also generally narrower.