Attic ladders are a safe and convenient solution for climbing to the attic. To date, the range of models is quite large, so everyone can choose a model for those properties that he needs. Wooden and metal, folding and scissor – and these are not all the parameters that include attic stairs. For the convenience of choosing a staircase, in this article we will consider the characteristics of the models, highlighting their advantages, and talk about the differences from other designs. So how to choose the attic ladder we are going to present to you in this article.
Table of Contents
- Manufacturing material
- Opening mechanism
- Insulated attic stairs
- Fire resistant attic stairs
- Overview of attic stairs. How to choose
- Models of wooden ladders FAKRO
- Models of metal ladders FAKRO
- Which attic ladder is better – wooden or metal
- Wooden ladders
- Metal ladders
- Scissor attic ladders
- Video how to choose the attic ladder
Attic ladder lowes are divided into wood and metal according to the material of manufacture. Made of pine wood, the wooden staircase will fit into the cozy interior of a country house. If desired, the staircase can be painted in your favorite color, and it will become a real highlight of your interior. Metal models are suitable for more frequent use, as they have high functionality and strength, withstanding a load of up to 200 kg.
According to the mechanism of opening the stairs, there are folding, sliding and scissor. Of course, due to their ability to fold into the ceiling, all attic ladder lowes save space in your home. And the scissor system is also good because it can be installed where there is not enough space for folding sectional stairs. About compact attic ladder installation
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Insulated attic stairs
Often, attics in country houses are cold, which means that the staircase hatch must protect the living space from the penetration of cold air. In this case, it is worth considering insulated models of attic stairs: they are equipped with a special hatch with several contours of seals. The thickness of such a cover can be up to 80 mm, due to which the hatch retains heat inside the house.
When choosing a model, you should pay attention to its strength and stability. The components of the staircase are responsible for this: the dovetail mechanism and reinforced hinges will give reliability to the entire structure, the side handrail and anti-slip recesses on the steps will make the ascent and descent as comfortable and safe as possible, and the plastic tips on the legs will not only provide additional stability, but also protect the floor of your home from scratches.
Fire resistant attic stairs
It is worth noting that there are special purpose compact attic ladders on the market – they are fire-resistant, therefore they are an obstacle to the spread of fire during a fire (up to 60 minutes). Ladders of this type must be certified in accordance with fire safety requirements, which means they must be made of fireproof, non-combustible material. The sealing contour of these models expands under the influence of temperature and prevents the penetration of smoke into the residential floor.
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Overview of attic stairs. How to choose
What to look for
If you are wondering about buying an attic staircase, then you need to consider:
Distance from ceiling to floor. A wooden staircase can be cut using a special stencil to reduce its length. On metal models, the segment can be removed and adjusted in height.
The dimensions of the attic staircase are chosen either for the existing opening; it can be the small attic ladder opening, or the opening is made specifically for the staircase. To find the required size of the staircase, measure the width and length of the opening, the height from floor to ceiling.
Will there be enough space to fold out the ladder segments or opt for models with a scissor system.
Models of wooden ladders FAKRO
FAKRO LWS Smart is an affordable FAKRO wooden staircase. Equipped with anti-slip notches on the steps, which increases its safety. The load of this model is 160 kg, which will allow you to climb the ladders with a load in your hands. Manhole cover – wood color, good for clapboard ceilings.
The LWK Komfort attic staircase differs from the previous model by the presence of a side rail: it will make climbing to the attic even more comfortable, and plastic tips will help to avoid mechanical damage and scratches on the floor. The hatch cover on the LWK model is white, which makes it invisible on the ceiling. Maximum load – 160 kg.
The LTK Thermo is designed for homes where temperature differences are felt between floors. A 66 mm thick insulated manhole cover will keep cold air out of the living space. This ladder is also equipped with foot caps, side rail and anti-slip recesses. The maximum load of this model is 160 kg.
An even more insulated version is LTK Energy. The LTK attic staircase has two sealing circuits, which indicates its additional tightness and heat saving. The model has a side rail, foot caps and anti-slip notches and also has a 160 kg load capacity. Easily retractable to the ceiling, white hatch cover.
Closes the line of wooden attic ladders LWT Thermo – a super energy-saving model. It has three circuits that insulate the hatch cover, 80 mm thick, due to which cold air from the unheated attic does not penetrate the residential floor. The set includes a handrail and plastic tips for the legs. The manhole cover is white.
Models of metal ladders FAKRO
Models of metal ladders FAKROMetal ladders due to their material are more durable and strong.
Model LMS – folding sectional loft ladder. It has an insulated hatch cover, around the perimeter of which there are seals – this system will help to avoid heat loss. The ladder can be easily folded into the ceiling and retracted with a special rod. The hatch cover of this model has a built-in lock, which provides additional security. The LMS also features anti-slip notches on the steps for stability. Due to the material for making the stairs, the carrying capacity increases to 200 kg.
If you do not have room for a folding ladder, because its segments take up space when unfolding and can rest against a wall, then we advise you to pay attention to the model with a scissor system – LST. Its S-shaped side elements fold into the lid like an accordion, thus not taking up space, which is very convenient when there is little free space. The hatch cover of this model is energy-saving, white. The height of the model can be adjusted without changing the design of the staircase. The maximum load is 200 kg.
The LSF attic staircase is fire resistant, which is confirmed by a certificate in accordance with fire safety requirements. Its hatch is made of refractory material and is used as a barrier to the spread of fire during a fire: the contours of the seal around its perimeter expand under high temperatures and limit the penetration of smoke. Galvanized steel, from which this model is made, has high fire resistance parameters. The ladder has a scissor folding system and can carry up to 200 kg.
If your house has high ceilings, then look at the LMP model. A sectional staircase with an insulated hatch cover can be installed in houses with a ceiling height of up to 366 cm. Equipped with a handrail and anti-slip recesses on the steps, so lifting with a load in your hands will be comfortable and safe. The model is folded into the ceiling using a rod. A locking mechanism protects the ladder from automatic folding. The maximum load is 200 kg.
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Which attic ladder is better – wooden or metal
Private construction has been developing at a rapid pace in the last couple of decades. The desire to build the house of their dreams stimulates the owners to create new interesting projects, using every square meter of their creation with benefit. It has become not only a fashionable trend, but also an unexpected convenience to create residential attic rooms or refined attics in the under-roof space. If earlier attics evoked unpleasant sensations with their cluttered appearance, dust and cobwebs, today they are excellent premises that can be used as dressing rooms, pantries for storing conservation or other things. Residential attic rooms set in a romantic mood when you look at the starry sky.
And immediately the consumer faces a very urgent problem of convenient access to these premises. In the past, home construction projects planned fixed staircases. Now the most optimal solution for access to the upper attic is to install an attic staircase. Compact and convenient, financially economical and functional ladders will always come to the aid of the owners in providing access to the attic or attic.
Modern manufacturers offer many interesting models of staircase structures from different materials. Basically, it is wood or metal. The consumer decides which ladder to choose, however, we recommend taking into account where and from what material its use will be the best choice. Do not forget that practicality is paramount, however, if you want your home to be admired not only outside, but also inside, you need to take care that the appearance of the ladders fits into the overall design of the room where it is located. And the appearance of the staircase structure is influenced by the material from which it is made, however, as well as its technical characteristics.
Now it is important to decide how often you are going to use the attic staircase. If you will use the ladder infrequently and do not want to install it in a specific room, then it is better to choose an aluminum attic ladder from portable ladders. It is very lightweight, practical to use, does not lend itself to corrosion and does not require additional maintenance.
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Today, one of the most popular among the attic stairs. Wood is a fairly inexpensive and environmentally friendly material, therefore the cost of such models is very democratic. At the same time, the design is of high quality and durable. The material is convenient because it can be tinted in any color. They are the easiest compact attic ladder installation, so the user can independently mount this ladder using the user’s manual.
Metal ladders are made entirely of metal, which makes them more durable and allows them to withstand a lot of weight. At the same time, metal ladders do not deform under weight. If your room has unusually high ceilings and you need an attic staircase for very high rooms (over 320 cm), then you should definitely opt for a metal attic staircase.
Combination ladders combine the characteristics of a metal and wooden attic staircase and are a structure with metal rails and wooden steps. Perfect for a garage or workshop. If any of the components break, it is very easy to replace them.
Scissor attic ladders
These ladders are also called “accordions” because they stretch and contract like an accordion.
One of the primary factors influencing the choice of a staircase structure is the load that the staircase can withstand. Here it is imperative to provide that the loads that you can lift to the attic may be different, and your own weight must also be taken into account. Therefore, the minimum load on the ladder must be at least 150 kg. This is if we talk about wooden stairs. Metal ladders, due to their increased strength, can withstand loads of up to 200 kg. This is an important factor to consider when choosing a staircase structure.
For safety and prevention of injury, another factor in choosing a staircase, all steps have protective elements: anti-slip notches are applied to the steps of wooden stairs, special corrugations or notches are applied to metal ones.
Another important factor, in this case of keeping warm in the room, is a hatch built into the ceiling, which is lined with fiberboard on both sides and filled with insulation that retains heat in the cold season. The hatch itself opens very quietly, since it has a special spring retention mechanism, which can be further adjusted. Attic ladder lowes, both wooden and metal, can be easily opened with a lock ring.
Of course, choosing an attic staircase for your home is your prerogative. Both metal and wood are very worthy options. However, only you, after weighing all the circumstances and features of your home, must decide which of the ladders to give preference to.
Do not forget that for the correct choice of stairs, it is necessary to accurately determine the height from floor to ceiling, taking into account the level of finishing. If the height reaches 350 cm, then only a metal ladder can be used in this case, since wooden structures at this height will be unsafe. The metal ladder is durable and not deformable.
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When installing the hatch, do not forget to take into account that for the attic staircase, you need to provide a place for the “removal” of the elements of the staircase structure. So that at the closest distance there are no large lamps or other protruding elements of the room where the staircase is installed. If the room allows, then you can take a larger structure so that it is more comfortable to climb through the hatch to the upper rooms.
Be sure to install handrails to the ladders to make the ladders a safety area. Be careful when descending and ascending.