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How to Choose a Ladder

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Know the Difference
Some workers might not realize the differences from one ladder to the next. Having the right ladder for the job is the safest way to complete any task. Using the wrong ladder is extremely dangerous as it often leads to ladder misuse or abuse and can result in serious injury or even death. To get an idea of some of the different ways that ladders are used, just think about all of the tasks you and the other professionals do. Most of them require the use of ladders of different styles, sizes, duty ratings, and materials.
Some of the questions that may help you to understand your needs include:
  • Where will the ladder be used? Indoors or outdoors or both?
  • What projects or jobs will the ladder be used for?
  • Is there a possibility of working around electricity or overhead power lines?
  • How much weight will be on the ladder including tools and materials?
  • What obstacles might be in the way?
  • Will the ladder also be used to reach other heights?
  • What is the highest height you need to reach?

3 EASY STEPS

Our goals are very simple: We want to help you better understand how to choose the right ladder for the job and learn how to use ladders more safely. The four key elements of ladder selection are:

Step 1: Choose Your Application

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Ladders are designed and constructed to safely hold up to a specific amount of weight. Werner ladders come in two different Duty Ratings identified by their application in a domestic or industrial setting. The Load Rating is defined as the maximum safe load capacity of the ladder. A person's fully clothed weight plus the weight of any tools and materials that are carried onto the ladder must be less than the load rating.

Ladders manufactured to Australian and New Zealand Standards AS/NZS 1892 must clearly display a Duty Rating and a Load Rating. Domestic ladders shall have a Load Rate not less than 100kg and Industrial ladders shall have a Load Rate not less than 120kg.

Werner, as the manufacturer of ladder products, has chosen the following criteria of Duty and Load Rates for its products:
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Ladders are also built to handle the demands of various applications. For example, a ladder used frequently on a construction site by rugged workers should typically be stronger and have a corresponding higher Duty Rating than a ladder used by a lighter person for light chores around the home.

Workers should be advised to consider both the weight which will be on the ladder and the work application and to select the proper grade of ladder which is designed to handle anticipated usage.

The terminology of Ladder Grades, Duty Ratings, and Types may initially be confusing. Remember that the Duty Rating is the maximum safe load capacity of the ladder. Duty Ratings are described in terms of weight, such as 150kg. An Industrial Duty Rated ladder is designed for extra heavy duty professional use where the total weight on the ladder does not exceed 150kg.

Step 2: Select Height You Need to Reach

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To ensure you choose the ladder best suited to your needs, follow the Werner height safety chart. The highest permitted standing level on a stepladder is two steps down from the top. A person standing higher may lose their balance and fall. A person’s maximum safe reaching height is approximately 4 ft. (1.2 m) higher than the height of the ladder. For example, a typical person can safely reach an 8 ft. (2.4 m) ceiling on a 4 ft. (1.2 m)ladder*.
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* Assumes a 1.7m person with a vertical 0.3m reach.
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* Assumes a 1.7m person with a vertical 0.3m reach
** For roof access, ensure ladder is at least 1 metrre above guttering

Step 3: Select Ladder Style

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Next, choose the right style of ladder for the job. Different styles of ladders are designed to keep you safe and productive when climbing or standing. Using the wrong style of ladder or simply ignoring the limitations of climbing equipment, can result in a fall or serious injury.

Options include: Step Stool, Double Sided, Dual Purpose, Extension, Multi Telescopic and Scaffold

OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

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Werner offers ladders made from fibreglass and aluminium. Each material has characteristics which make it best for certain applications, or one material may simply fit the personal preferences of the user. For example, potential contact with electrical wires, or a hostile environment such as exposure to certain chemicals or outdoor storage, should have a major impact upon the material selection.

- The highest quality glass and resins are used in our fibreglass

- Aluminium is produced tough and durable with 6000 series alloy
Different types of ladders are designed to keep you safe and productive when climbing or standing. Using the wrong style of ladder or simply ignoring the limitations of climbing equipment can result in a fall or serious injury.
To ensure you choose the ladder best suited to your needs, follow the Werner height safety charts on the Ladder Safety Tips page. Note, the highest permitted standing level on a stepladder is two steps down from the top. A person standing higher may lose their balance and fall. A person’s maximum safe reaching height is approximately 1.2m higher than the height of the ladder. For example, a typical person can safety reach a 2.4m ceiling on a 1.2m ladder.
Ladders are designed and constructed to safely hold up to a specific amount of weight. Werner ladders come in two different Duty Ratings identified by their application in domestic or industrial settings.

Werner offers ladders made from fibreglass and aluminium. Each material has characteristics which make it best for certain applications, or one material may simply fit the personal preferences of the user. For example, fiberglass is recommended when there is potential contact with electrical wires or a hostile environment, such as exposure to certain chemicals.