Choosing a Loft Ladder

Main Types of Loft Ladder


When it comes to choosing a loft ladder it can be difficult to know which one to select. This may be due to not knowing which ladder will fit, if you are having this issue then why not take a look at our loft ladder finder? Enter your details and we will give you a range guaranteed to fit. Another potential reason for not knowing which loft ladder to buy is there are so many different varieties and buying a loft ladder is not something you do every day. There are three main types of loft ladder available, Sliding, Folding & Telescopic. These varieties are made in aluminium, steel and timber. Below you will find a breakdown of each of the varieties to help you decide. 

Buying a loft ladder makes access to the extra storage space in your loft much easier and a whole lot safer. The ladder that you buy is going to depend on your personal preference, the space available and how often you are going to use them. Our Loft Ladder Range consists of cheaper basic aluminium loft ladders for occasional use to your more deluxe and aesthetically pleasing concertina and fully electric loft ladders.

Remember:  A loft ladder can usually only be used if you are using your loft as storage space. An inhabitable room will need a permanent staircase fitted that complies with relevant building regulations.



Sliding Loft Ladders


By far the easiest ladders to fit and use are the sliding variety. They are usually attached to the joists inside your loft and usually come as two or three-section ladders. Most modern homes in the UK will have a loft opening big enough to meet the minimum sizes specified, or will easily be able to extend it to fit. They don't usually come with a loft hatch supplied but can come with a kit that allows you to convert your existing hatch into a hinged hatch. Budget sliding ladders are made of lightweight aluminium and are really designed for minimal, light usage. They are a lot noisier to use than the more 'deluxe' timber versions but do a straightforward job for a decent price.

There are three variants to the sliding model. The first is the Concertina Loft Ladder. These ladders are excellent space savers requiring virtually no clearance or storage space in your loft and have small landing space requirements. This does come at a price, however. Cheap budget concertina ladders are truly awful things. Because they require so much engineering they cannot be manufactured cheaply when they are they are horrible ladders to install and use.


Heavy Duty Concertina Loft Ladders


The truth is that we have stopped selling budget versions of these ladders. Our heavy-duty concertina ladders are either the incredible Dimes ladders made in Italy or heavy-duty, almost industrial quality, ladders made in the UK. The ladders by comparison to other loft ladders are expensive but we have had nothing but glowing reports back from our customers. 


Telescopic Loft Ladders


Telescopic Loft Ladders have the same space-saving qualities of concertina ladders married to a minimalist design aesthetic. These ladders are the perfect balance of form and function. They look fantastic and can fit in ridiculously tight spaces. The main benefit though is the price as the simpler design makes for a better value ladder. If space is minimal and your floor to floor height is between 2170 to 2880 mm there is no better option in our opinion than the Youngman Telescopic Loft Ladders. 


Folding Ladders


The second type of ladder is the folding style of the loft ladder. They are fairly straightforward to use. The unit simply folds up, usually in two or three sections which end up stacked on top of each other on the loft hatch once fully closed. By far the most popular, and practical option is the timber folding ladder. As before timber, ladders tend to be quieter and smoother to operate than aluminium ladders and they feel more secure and robust. Aluminium folding ladders can 'bend' or 'flex' as you stand on them which is entirely meant but can be disconcerting for some people.

Good quality timber loft ladders usually come with a 'frame' and a loft hatch attached ready to be installed in your loft opening. They will have locks which hold the ladder either in a closed or locked position and are usually 'sprung' to make them easy to lower or raise. You will have to make your loft opening the size required by the hatch supplied, but most have different hatch sizes you can choose and you should be able to find one that suits your dimensions. The most popular folding ladders in our range are the Youngman Eco S Line Timber Loft Ladder or the Youngman Easiway. 


Electric Loft Ladders


We have 3 main ranges of electric loft ladders available on our website from Skylark, Stira and Dimes. Electic loft ladders come in two different forms, semi-automatic and fully electric. All our electric loft ladders work in the same way as the folding loft ladders and with the press of a button, the ladder will unfold its self. For more information on our electric loft ladder range please visit our detailed electric loft ladder information guide.   


Additional Information - Weight Load, Guarantee & Fit


Although there are no specific classifications when it comes to loft ladders each loft ladder will have a maximum load. When you look at the maximum load figure listed under the ladder's specifications please bear in mind that if you intend to carry boxes into your loft space you need to add this weight on to your weight in order to be sure they will meet your requirements.

We have listed the Manufacturer's guarantee period under the specifications of each ladder. These vary from 1 year to 10 years depending on the ladder. We believe that a good quality loft ladder which has been correctly fitted and which is used within the limits set down by the manufacturer should give you trouble-free usage for between 5 and 10 years.

At Ladderstore we are proud to have such a vast range of Loft Ladder Accessories and spares. Our accessories include additional handrails, balustrade kits and extension pieces to ensure you are always secure when working at height. If you have an existing ladder that contains wearing products, such as hinges, lock and catches or feet you'll be happy to know we also stock a wide range of loft ladder spares from Midmade and Youngman. 

If you are planning on installing the ladders yourself you should also make sure that you have a good, safe set of stepladders that are tall enough to get you into your loft without stepping above the safe working height of the stepladders. There are offers on to get a discount when you buy stepladders with our loft ladders, and conveniently we can deliver them all at the same time ready for you to get stuck in!

How do I know if the Loft Ladders I want will fit in my House? Good question. Without measuring up you won't know and unfortunately neither will we. But the good news is once you've measured up is really easy to find the perfect loft ladder guaranteed to fit. If you use our ‘How to Measure for Loft Ladders’ guide and enter your details into our loft ladder finder we'll show you a vast range of products 100% guaranteed to fit in your loft. 

The truth is that buying the right set of loft ladders can be a little bit complicated. But we are the experts and we are always happy to talk to customers about their needs so feel free to call us on 01204 590 232 and talk through your needs. Make use of the tools on the site and the unparallel information about the ladders to make informed choices, then get us to double-check and give you our guarantee.