Extension vs Platform Step Ladders

Extension vs Platform Step Ladders
Extension vs Platform Step Ladders teaser

21 Feb 2018

A ladder is a ladder, right? Well, those of you that have a business that requires getting people to any height will know that actually there is a number of different types of Ladders. Two of the most popular are extension ladders and platform ladders. Choosing which one will be better for the job you need to do depends very much on what you need to get done. One of the key considerations in relation to the task is the safest option, as falls from ladders continue to be a huge cause of accidents.

There are four key considerations that you should think about when choosing a platform ladder or extension ladder. Making a comparison of these four considerations will help you decide the safest and most efficient option.


As a rule of thumb, the safest option is to use a platform ladder if the height allows it. For starters, they are much more solid and have four contact points with the ground, compared to the two you have on an extension ladder. This makes them much sturdier. This also means you don’t need someone at the bottom stabilising the ladder like you would if it was an extension ladder.

Extension ladders have the benefit of the fact they can extend much higher than a platform ladder and for this reason are often used by tradespeople, painters and gardeners who need to get into higher, often difficult spots to work.



You don’t need to have anything to lean against with a platform ladder, you can pretty much put it up anywhere. The limitation is that they do not reach as high as an extension ladder. Although you can get tall platform ladders they can become cumbersome to store and transport. This is useful for things like changing lightbulbs that are in the centre of the room. They are much easier to balance on, which enables more freedom of movement to carry out a task. However, if you need to prune a tree and get access to different areas it will be better to lean an extension ladder to reach difficult spots.


Amount of people

With a platform ladder, you can work, ascend and descend without assistance. Both single or double-sided platform ladders are available, meaning that two people could ascend the ladder to work at the same time. With an extension ladder, one person ascends and one person should be at the bottom holding the ladder securely in position.


Length of time of the job

Generally, extension ladders are better for jobs that don’t take too long to achieve. This is because it takes more balance, work and concentration for the person using an extension ladder than with a platform ladder. The higher you are, the harder it is to balance. A platform ladder is sturdy and often they have an area where tools can be stored.

Essentially it comes down to the task that needs completing. The height, the area, the number of people available and the length of time the job takes will have an impact on your final decision.

Are you looking to purchase a ladderContact us today to give you the right advice on the best equipment for your business.


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