Step Ladders

The most common ladder is a step ladder or A-frame ladder. It allows tradesmen or regular DIY personal to work in hard to reach areas such as the loft. Safety is very important with ladders having non-slip tread or handrails for ease of climbing. Step or A-frame folding ladders use wider treads (steps) for stability and are self supporting coupled with a lightweight frame.
These ladders have a top tread for multi-purpose use with the platform as a stable working position or a high level platform for resting tools and materials being used. This type of ladder opens up like scissors to be free standing steps with a small podium at the top. It makes it safe by leaving your hands free and with the added handrail above the platform for added stability.

Swingback Ladders
This type of step ladder usually has deep serrated anti-slip steps to sure a secure footing on the ladder. Featuring only treads on one side this stepladder has box section back legs with heavy duty bracing for added strength and safety. The number of treads on this type of stepladder includes the very top tread section, so a 6 tread step ladder has 5 treads plus the very top section. The HSE advises for safety reasons that users should not stand on the top 3 treads. Whilst the BS EN131 standard states that the user should not use the top two treads.
When choosing a ladder its influenced by material as well as safety and durability purposes. Fibreglass ladders generally offer the best value being lightweight and durable than aluminium, even though it costs a lot more than its metal counterpart. For a breakdown of each material:

Aluminium
Aluminium stepladder is favoured among homeowners for it reasonable price and lightness. These stepladders are durable, but the legs can bend and the steps or rungs sometimes can sag. Professional don't usually use aluminium as they are able to conduct electricity, which can be dangerous. They may be cheap and light, but are not the first choice among professionals.
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Part Details Brand Number of Treads Stiles Material Platform Height Open Length Maximum Load Weight
8 Step Glass Fibre Platform Stepladder RS Pro 8 Fibreglass 2.1m - 150kg 10.7kg
6 Step Glass Fibre Swingback Stepladder RS Pro 6 Fibreglass 1.6m - 150kg 8.1kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 3 steps RS Pro 3 Aluminium 0.8m - 150kg 6.9kg
4 Step Glass Fibre Swingback Stepladder RS Pro 4 Fibreglass 1.0m - 150kg 5.7kg
5 Step Glass Fibre Swingback Stepladder RS Pro 5 Fibreglass 1.3m - 150kg 7.1kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 8 steps RS Pro 8 Aluminium 2.2m - 150kg 15.3kg
Zarges Fibreglass Step Ladder 6 steps 3.35m open length Zarges 6 Fibreglass 1.37m 3.35m 150kg 9kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 5 steps RS Pro 5 Aluminium 1.37m - 150kg 10.5kg
Zarges Fibreglass Step Ladder 7 steps 3.6m open length Zarges 7 Fibreglass 1.6m 3.6m 150kg 10kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 10 steps RS Pro 10 Aluminium 2.76m - 150kg 18.1kg
Zarges Aluminium Step Ladder 4 steps Zarges 4 Aluminium 0.8m - 150kg 3.7kg
Zarges Aluminium Step Ladder 6 steps Zarges 6 Aluminium 1.19m - 150kg 5.3kg
Zarges Fibreglass Step Ladder 5 steps 3.15m open length Zarges 5 Fibreglass 1.14m 3.15m 150kg 8kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 10 steps 2.8m open length RS Pro 10 Aluminium - 2.8m 150kg 14kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 4 steps RS Pro 4 Aluminium 1.09m - 150kg 8.9kg
Zarges Aluminium Step Ladder 8 steps Zarges 8 Aluminium 1.62m - 150kg 7.4kg
Zarges Aluminium Step Ladder 8 steps 1.73m open length Zarges 8 Aluminium - 1.73m 150 kg, 175 kg 8.4kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 7 steps RS Pro 7 Aluminium 1.93m - 150kg 14kg
Zarges Fibreglass Step Ladder 4 steps 2.9m open length Zarges 4 Fibreglass 0.91m 2.9m 150kg 7kg
RS Pro Aluminium Step Ladder 9 steps RS Pro 9 Aluminium 2.49m - 150kg 16.8kg
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