What has two bars and holds a bunch of rungs? A ladder, right? While this is the basic composition of ladder, the device isn't that simple. In fact, this important home-maintenance tool comes in numerous forms, each of which has its own use. With so many choices, how are you supposed to know which type to use and when? Fortunately, we're here to help! Here's a guide to the various kinds of ladders on the market, what they're used for and how to hang them using your garage wall storage.
Types of ladders
Ladders are all engineered with a specific use in mind. Deviating from the ladder's intended purpose could result in an injury, so we recommend using the right one for the job. Here's a quick breakdown of the various ladders available on the market:
Step: These ladders can be small (often intended for use in a home) or large (used for industrial purposes). They are self-supporting, meaning they don't have to lean against anything to remain upright. Some step ladders have usable rungs on only one side while others are OK to climb on both sides. This type is best for reaching areas in which you cannot lean a ladder.
Extension: Extension ladders are long and do not bend. They are the epitome of what you imagine a ladder to be, with two bars and rungs in the middle. As the name implies, extension ladders can be adjusted so they're longer than their initial size. They also contain two pieces: the base (which plants on the ground) and the fly (which extends outward). These ladders must lean against something to remain upright, such as a house or wall.
Platform: These folding ladders have two sides, creating the shape of an A. This also means they are self-supporting. Furthermore, platform ladders contain a rung that's wider than the others. It's intended to be used as a spot to hold items, such as a bucket of paint. The platform generally extends all the way to the other side of the ladder. They are also often designed to support body weight.
Multipurpose or combination: These ladders are designed to do the work of two or more other types of ladders. They often feature moving parts that lock into place and allow you to create whatever configuration you need.
Tips for storing your ladders
No matter what kinds of ladders you have, you'll need to keep them out of the way when you don't need them. Here are a few tips for storing your tools:
Keep them off the floor: While you may lean your ladder to use it, you don't want to leave it that way all the time. Hanging your ladder on a wall hook is much more secure that leaning it against the wall in your garage.
Make it accessible: Ladders are a good tool to keep on hand, so avoid hanging yours in the back of the garage. Keep them in an easy-to-access spot.
Storing step ladders: If your step ladder collapses, you can hang it like you would any other ladder. If not, you'll have to place it against the wall. Small step ladders may fit inside a wall cabinet.