8 Different Types of Ladders You Need to Know

I’m guessing you have heard the risks associated with using ladders, but there are specific tasks that you can’t do without a ladder. This leaves you with no option but to purchase a ladder. 

And because there are a ton of ladder types out there, it can be hard to choose the right ladder for your tasks. That is why you need to know the different types of ladders in the market. 

Because each of these different types has specific uses, for example, you can’t use a boat ladder when you need to clean your gutters

8 Different Types of Ladders You Need to Know

In this post, I’ll walk you through the different types of ladders available in the market. So it’s from this list of different types of ladders that you will know what’s suitable for you. 

But first, let’s look at some of the features you should look for in a ladder. This is quite important, and I encourage you to read every line. 

Let’s dive in. 

Features to Look For in a Good Ladder 


This is one of the top priorities of most ladder users. Fortunately, there are a ton of ladders with different heights, including extension ladders, attic ladders, step ladders, among others. Some ladders are quite short and are suited for simple tasks. On the other hand, some ladders are tall and are better for various tasks such as cleaning gutters, among others. 

That said, you need to have your list of priorities before you decide to buy a ladder. Make sure you know the task you will be doing using the ladder and the recommended height of the ladder. Knowing this will help you determine the right ladder height. If you need to clean your gutters, you’ll need a taller ladder. On the other hand, if you need to access your pools, height won’t be your primary concern. 

Finally, you need to get a ladder height that you’ll be comfortable working on. You don’t want a ladder that will make you strain and expose you to accidents when working on your projects. The right ladder height will guarantee your safety and minimize your chances of ladder accidents. 


There are different types of ladders, and all of them come with varying designs of material. The most common ladder materials are wood, aluminum, fiberglass, and steel. Most people would prefer aluminum-made ladders because they are corrosion-free and lightweight. Sadly, aluminum conducts electricity, which means it will be a risk for people who work on electrical projects. 

Fiberglass is another ladder material. Unlike aluminum, fiberglass does not conduct electricity making it one of the most preferred ladder materials for electricity projects. Fiberglass is also more durable, which means that it can serve you for a longer time. Sadly, this material is heavy as compared to aluminum. 

Finally, it is essential to note that fiberglass and aluminum are the most preferred as compared to wood. Also, these materials are the leading choices for most people using ladders. But that doesn’t mean you should disqualify wood ladders. Consider your priorities before making any decisions. 


Ladders have gone through a transition. Initially, ladders were simple tools without any accessories. Today, ladders come with various accessories to help with different needs. For example, extension locks help you lock the ladder whenever you extend it to guarantee your safety. 

Other ladder accessories include pail shelves, which help to hold buckets. These ladder caps prevent damage against the place you mount your ladder, podiums that give the user more foot room while climbing the ladder, among others. 


This is one of the most critical considerations. Usually, after you have looked at the above features, the next thing you should determine is the price. This is what determines whether you will purchase the ladder or not. 

It is always important to compare prices before you buy. This will help you make sure that you are purchasing an item worth the amount. Amazon is one of the online retailer platforms where you can do a quick price for the ladders you want. The best of all is that you can filter the results only to give you types of ladders that can be delivered to your area of residence. 

Also, you need to look at the reviews even after you have settled on the price. You don’t want to purchase an item that has bad reviews. Instead, you want value for your money, and as such, every cent you pay should count. 

1. Extension Ladders

Louisville Ladder FE3224

Extension ladders are one of the different types of ladders you can find in the market today. Extension ladders are ladders that have two sections – the base and the flying part, which enable them to be extended or retracted easily to match the kind of work you want to do. 

Extension ladders are popular because of their height. Most people using ladders use them either for professional purposes or home activities. For example, ladders are mostly used for ceiling activities, including cleaning gutters, painting. These tasks need extension ladders because you can adjust them to a length that matches your preferences. 

The downside of this ladder is that it doesn’t support itself as a step ladder does. This means that you’ll have to look for ways of stabilizing these kinds of ladder whenever you are working on projects. 

The good news, though, is that you can use these types of ladders to reach higher heights and let you work on your projects comfortably.

2. Telescopic Ladders 

Xtend & Climb 785P

Telescopic ladders are ladders that come with overlapping sections and can slide both inwards and outwards. Nearly all ladders you are familiar with, such as extension ladders, step ladders, folding ladders, etc. can be modified to be telescopic ladders. 

And just like an extension ladder, telescopic ladders also allow users to adjust them to any length that matches the task they are carrying out. Additionally, telescopic ladders don’t consume much space and, therefore, can be stored in minimal space. 

Sure, this ladder might appear small, but you can always extend it to your desired height. That said, you can use this ladder for most indoor and outdoor activities such as cleaning of gutters, fixing electric cables, painting, decorations, among others. 

3. Fire Escape Ladders

Fire Escape Ladders

Fire escape ladders are types of ladders that provide means of escape in case there is a fire breakout. Fire escape ladders usually offer ways to get out of a building when other staircases are inaccessible. You will most probably find these types of ladders in organizations. 

Additionally, you can use this ladder can be used in homes, schools, or any other residential place to serve for emergency purposes. Now, there are different types of fire escape ladders – the fixed straight diagram fire escape ladder and the folding-type pattern fire escape ladder. These two types of extension ladders come with hooks to help users fix them on the walls. 

The advantage of this type of ladder is that you can easily move it from one place to another. Additionally, you can set this ladder outside your windows, or installed in organizations to serve for emergencies during fire breakouts. 

4. Step Stool Ladders 

Step Stool Ladders

Most people quite often confuse the different types of ladders, especially the step ladder and the step stool ladders. Now, the difference between a step ladder and a step stool ladder is that step stool ladders resemble a stool than a ladder. 

Step stool ladders share some standard features with a step ladder like the treads, though the step stool ladders are quite smaller and lighter as compared to step ladders. Additionally, step stool ladders take the shape of an inverted “V.” Also, these ladders come with hinges that connect their foldable sections. 

Step stool ladders are mostly suited for indoor activities because of their small size. You may want to use these types of ladders in your kitchen to get something from your kitchen shelf. Children can also use these types of ladders in their bedrooms, bathroom to reach, and get something. 

Finally, step stool ladders come with a foldable design, which means that they are easy to store and require little space. Additionally, these types of ladders come with rubber grips to guarantee your safety when using it. 

5. Platform Ladders 

Platform Ladders

The first type of ladder that doesn’t come with the extension feature on this list, but they come in a variety of sizes – from two feet to eighteen feet. Additionally, platform ladders are self-supporting ladders, unlike extension ladders. Also, these ladders are portable, which means that you can move with them from one place to another. 

Platform ladders are almost similar to step ladders. These two ladders take nearly the same design, but the difference lies in their purpose. A platform ladder is best if you want to use both hands and legs while working on the ceiling. 

One of the reasons why people love platform ladders is that these types of ladders will offer users comfortability, regardless of the height you are working from. And you don’t have to worry about your safety because these types of ladders are self-supporting. 

6. Step Ladders 

Step Ladders

A step ladder is a ladder with treads or steps with an inverted V shape design. These ladders are almost similar to the step stool ladders. Unlike step stool ladders, step ladders can be used to perform tasks, both indoor and outdoor. 

Step ladders don’t require any support, which means that they are self-supporting ladders. You don’t have to worry about your safety while using this ladder. Also, you will not go through the hassle of stabilizing your ladder as compared to other ladders, which you’ll have to spend time securing. 

If you want to clean your gutters or repaint your walls, the step ladders will come in handy. They have considerable heights and can be used to reach higher heights. If you are a professional, you can use a step ladder for outdoor activities and at construction sites. 

Finally, I must mention that step ladders come in different designs, including step stool ladders. As such, step ladder prices may vary, depending on what type of step ladder you want. Just to shed some light, step ladders will range from $100 to $1,000.

7. Multipurpose Ladders 

Multipurpose Ladders

If you are a tradesperson, a multipurpose ladder is a must-have tool. Multipurpose ladders are efficient, quite affordable, and can be used to perform a variety of tasks. That said, these ladders are named multipurpose ladders because they can handle more than one job. 

Multipurpose ladders have a unique design, and it is suitable for contractors who are most likely to work on different projects daily. And as the name suggests, multipurpose ladders can be modified to suit any use. 

That said, you can convert this ladder into any ladder you want – be it a step ladder, a staircase ladder, an extension ladder, among others. The bottom line is that you can modify this type of ladder to suit your needs. 

8. Folding Ladders

Folding Ladders

The last category of ladders on this list is folding ladders. Folding ladders are those ladders that users can fold once they have been used to complete a task. These ladders are self-supporting, which means that you won’t spend much time figuring how you can secure your ladder before starting to work on a project. 

Folding ladders are mainly popular because of their folding ability. Additionally, their folding ability makes them a better choice for people with limited storage space. These ladders won’t require much space to store. Also, folding ladders are easily portable, and you can move with them from one place to another, giving you the flexibility to do a variety of projects. 

Folding ladders are almost similar to step ladders. You can use both step, and foldable ladders to reach higher heights. But the difference that lies between the two ladders is that you can fold a folding ladder while you can’t do the same for a step ladder. 

Bottom Line 

Hopefully, you now know some of the different types of ladders. Depending on your needs, you should be able to choose the perfect ladder for your jobs. 

There are lots of things you need to consider. Fortunately, I was able to cover them. Check them out against your top priorities to know what type of ladder you will need. 

Whether you want to clean your gutters or find an item to access your home pool, you can still get a ladder from these ladder categories. 

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