Whether you're painting, cleaning gutters, or getting the cat out of a tree, you need a ladder. There is no substitute for a ladder properly matched to the project at hand.
Ladders vary by material as well as size. First determine what size is needed. The following measurements are for a person who is 5 ft. 6 in. tall with a 12-inch vertical reach.
Load capacity is important. The load capacity includes your own weight plus the weight of materials you will be carrying. Match your needs with the following chart.
To use a ladder safely, you should understand the differences between ladder materials.
Always use fiberglass ladders when working with or near electricity.
In addition to standard stepladders and extension ladders, articulating multi-use ladders are a good investment if your needs are varied. They can be used as a regular or stairway stepladder, an extension-type straight ladder, or a scaffold system support.