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How to measure for a step ladder

 

how to measure for a step ladder

Last week we looked at how to use a step ladder safely, and this week we’re giving you the low down on how to measure for a step ladder. Of course, choosing the right size step ladder is fundamental to your safety whilst at work.

In fact, the process of choosing the right step ladder is as important as working safely on it. However, working out which step ladder is right for you isn’t always so easy. You’ll find a lot of terminology thrown around in product descriptions, which can make confusing reading even at the best of times.

Today we’re going to decode some terminology for you, making choosing the right step ladder simple.

Product: Platform steps

If you’re choosing platform steps (a step ladder with a platform) the number of treads tells you how many treads the step has including the platform. For example, if a website states the platform step has 4 treads then it will have 3 treads plus the platform.

The platform height is the height from the floor to the platform you can stand on. On platform steps it’s safe to work from the platform height.

The overall open height is the measurement from the floor to the top of the knee brace.

The closed height, otherwise referred to as the closed length is the length of the step once it’s in its folded position. Only pick a step ladder with a closed length that will comfortable fit within your transport or storage!

The reach height, or working height, is the height you’ll be able to carry out your work at. It’s typically 2m (6ft) above the quoted platform for step ladders – but of course your actual height does come into it.

Product: Swingback step

Unlike platform steps, the number of treads in a swingback step refers to how many treads the step has including the top tread. Users should always stand several treads lower than the highest tread when using a swingback step.

The overall open height is the height from the floor to the top tread – but remember you can’t work from this highest point.

Like the platform step, the closed height, otherwise referred to as the closed length is the length of the step once it’s in its folded position. Only pick a step ladder with a closed length that will comfortable fit within your transport or storage!

The reach height, or working height, is the height you’ll be able to carry out your work at. It’s typically 2m (6ft) above the quoted platform for step ladders.

Taking all these measurements into consideration should ensure you choose the right step ladder for the job, as well as helping to ensure your safety whilst working. Why not refresh your working knowledge by reading our last blog post on using a step ladder safely? You could also book into one of our working at height courses.

Our In House Safe Use and Pre Use Inspection of Ladders and Steps course will provide you with all the information you need to keep you safe whilst working from your step ladder. Give us a call on 01282 615517 to find out more!

Do you have any tips on safe step ladder use? Tell us in the comments below or tweet us @BrownsLadders

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