If your house has a loft but doesn’t have a ladder, then it’s important that you install one. Loft ladders make ascending into your home’s attic much easier, and more importantly, much safer. People regularly fall and hurt themselves trying to climb into attics without the support of a ladder. Other people haul collapsible ladders up their stairs every time that they need to go into their attic, which is simply impractical.
There are many more advantages to loft ladders than just making loft ascension safer and more convenient. This article will cover all of these, as well as bring you a few tips for installing a loft ladder:
Advantages of Loft Ladders
Loft ladders are a great investment and come with many advantages. One of the great advantages of loft ladders is that many of them, including the ladders by Fakro, come pre-assembled. This makes the entire installation process much easier, and considerably less stressful. This wasn’t always the case, however. In the past, loft ladders came in individual pieces and had to be installed by either a professional or put together by the person that ordered them. There are also many more advantages, including:
- Safety as already mentioned is one of the primary benefits of installing a loft ladder. Clambering into one’s attic can be extremely difficult with one. Hauling a collapsible ladder upstairs can also be very inconvenient. In addition to being inconvenient, hauling a ladder upstairs can also be dangerous. If you put a ladder down on the floor, it could potentially slip. This could result in you falling over and hurting yourself. Loft ladders are sturdy, reliable, and a great investment.
- Time can also be saved by installing a loft ladder. Many people keep their boilers in their attics, which results in them having to ascend up and down every time that they want to access their boiler. Having to crawl through a ceiling hatch without a ladder can be very time-consuming, and frankly, very difficult. Hauling a ladder indoors every time that you need to go up into the attic is also very laborious.
- Convenience is something else found with loft ladders. Not only are they convenient in the sense that you do not have to crawl in and out of your attic every single time you need to use it, but also because they allow you to use your attic for storage more often. When you have a ladder that goes straight up into the attic, you can go in and out as you please without any stress. You simply pull a cord, and your loft’s ladder comes down.
- Tradespeople may not go into your attic to complete work if you do not have a loft ladder. This is because they may not be insured for climbing into lofts. If you do not have a loft ladder then they may flat out refuse to go into your attic, which could be problematic if you have something that needs to be repaired up there.
What Tools Do You Need to Install a Loft Ladder?
The tools needed for the installation of a loft ladder are tools that everybody has. If you don’t have them, then finding them won’t be difficult at all. You can either buy them from a hardware shop or rent them from one. Alternatively, you could always borrow one from a friend or relative.
- Combi drill
- Electric saw
- Marker pen and pencil
- UPVC or architrave trim
- Impact driver
With all of this said, your pre-assembly pack will tell you what tools are needed, so it’s better to follow the manufacturer’s guidance. You will also need a face mask, goggles, and potentially somebody there to help you.
In order to prepare for installing your loft ladder, you need to determine exactly where you want it to go. Find the position that suits you best. Once you have established exactly where you want the ladder to go, you should drill a screw through your drywall ceiling, then go into the attic, locate the screw, and measure out the width and length of the screw. With that said, some attics already have hatches, so you could of course use the hatch that you already have. Cutting out a hole in the ceiling with a saw can be very laborious and if there’s already a hatch there, then it is entirely unnecessary.
The installation process is very straightforward. It’s also worth mentioning that installing a loft ladder adds value to your home, so if you are looking to sell or looking for somewhere new, this cheap and easy installation guide could add a few extra hundred dollars to your home’s value.
Once you have prepared and found an appropriate place for your ladder to be fitted, you can mark the four corners of the frame. Drill a hole in each of the four corners, then cut the drywall from underneath with the use of an electric saw.
The ladder will come with temporary support boards. Mount these to the bottom of your hole.
The next step requires another person’s help. One person should stand in the loft, while the other stands below. The loft ladder should be lifted up through the gap and handed to the person that is standing in the gap. It then needs to be positioned and lowered onto the support beams.
Make sure that the frame is positioned in the hole. It needs to be square in the hole, which you can do by measuring diagonally in both directions. Once you have done this, get everything in place, and pre-drill the hinge area so that it’s ready for screws.
Once you have screwed the hinges into position and made sure that everything’s in place, you can hammer and screw everything in. Make sure that you test everything to ensure that it’s all sturdy and there are no errors. You can remove the temporary support beams once you have everything in place.
Once everything is in place, you may need to cut the ladder’s legs down to size. You can do this with a saw.
It’s also worth mentioning that some ladders are different and have their own installation instructions, so make sure that you follow the maker’s instructions if they come with some.
Loft ladders are a great addition to anybody’s home. If you are thinking about installing one, then make sure that you follow this guide’s advice – or the maker’s advice – so that your ladder is installed correctly.