Best Extension Ladders:The Smart Choices in 2019

Best Extension Ladder

Are you looking for the ladder that will let you decrease or increase height to suit your needs at hand?

If so, extension ladder can be the right choice for you.

On this page, you’ll find 7 best extension ladders, reviews and the related information to make the right decision on which ladder to get.

We’ve tested more than 80 models rigorously to recommend you the right one. Finally, we’ve narrowed them down to the 7 best. This guarantees that no matter which one you choose, you’ll certainly enjoy an excellent long-term investment.

Read on to find out.

7 Best Extension Ladder Comparison Chart 2019

Short in time? No worry.

We’ve added the following comparison chart for your faster checking! 

Ladder/Product
Name

Full-extended Height
(Feet)

Item Weight
(Pounds)

Weight Limit (Pounds)

Links

      Louisville Ladder FE3228

28 

40

300

        Generic EN131

12.5

26

330

IdealChoice

Ex-Large Scaffold

19.5

42

330

    Werner D1224-2 225- Pound

24

34

225

Ohuhu 12.5ft EN131 Aluminum

12.5 

25.2

330

Louisville Ladder FE1716

16 

28.4

250

DeWalt DXL3020-16PT

16 

31

300

Our Top Pick

Considering the rich array of features and its real-life applications, we’ve chosen Louisville Ladder FE3228 as our quick pick. Its not only for the enormous reputation of the brand but also for FE3228’s improved load capacity, maximum extended height and safety features that give it a leg-up in the competition.

Our Budget Pick

Ohuhu 12.5ft EN131 Aluminum extension ladder is the budget pick from today’s list of the best extension ladder.

But does the low price mean less performance?

No, not at all. While sorting out, this ladder from the brand Ohuhu caught our attention for its safe and handy features for an extremely low price.In fact, it’s at the top of our ladders list below 100.

What is an Extension Ladder?

An extension ladder (also known as portable ladder) is adjustable in length and non-self-supporting ladder.

As the name suggests, it extends to provide access to reach higher areas that can be challenging even by using the tallest step ladders.

This type of ladder consists of two or more sections which follow the sliding mechanism. The guides or brackets allow the user to use the ladder at any adjustable lengths or to the total length.

Extension ladders need a stable and strong structure to withstand the intended load. These are available in various materials and heights.

These ladders are very handy to handle a wide range of tasks. To reach the higher elevation of the construction site or to reach rooftops, extension ladders are a must have product for home and job site.

Top 7 Best Extension Ladder 2019- Your Perfect Helper

#1. Best Overall- Louisville FE3228

Louisville Ladder FE3228 Fiberglass Extension Ladder 300-Pound Capacity, 28-Feet

What We Liked Most About This Product

Louisville is one of the most reliable brands with the enormous reputation that reflects in its extension ladder FE3228. It’s not that hard to see why this is the case. For starters, this 28 foot extension ladder has the impressive capacity to handle loads of up to 300 pounds, thanks to its sturdy build. It also packs military-grade plated steel shoes complete with extra-thick rubber treads for enhanced safety.

Features and Benefits

To sum it up for you, let’s have a look at the main features of the FE3228 extension ladder by Louisville.

Quick latch system – an extension ladder’s latch system serves as a paramount feature as it ensures the ladder stays extended. The FE3228 packs cast aluminum locks ideal for residential, commercial and all construction applications. In a nutshell, it paints the perfect picture of the industry’s standard in regards to 300-pound rated extension ladders.

Serrated rungs – wet weather conditions can never be avoided, and when it starts raining, you want a reliable ladder that will enhance your safety. This extension ladder boasts fiberglass serrated D-Rungs to prevent slippage in wet conditions, besides enhancing stability during heavy-duty tasks.

Sounds impressive, right?

Steel-plated heavy-duty swivel safety shoe – the safety shoe of an extension ladder speaks tons about its comprehensive build, and you can be guaranteed that the FE3228 has you covered. It sports heavy-duty plated steel shoes, complete with extra-thick rubber treads for enhanced safety.

Pros:

  • Ideal for electrical applications thanks to its non-conductive rails
  • Direct rung-to-rail connection for extended lifespan
  • Reliable slide for a smooth operation of the ladder
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Comes with rope and pulley
  • CSA grade and meets or exceeds ANSI 14.4

Cons: 

  • Somewhat expensive in comparison to other extension ladders of its class

Overall, this Louisville ladder model FE3220 is the number one extension ladder you can invest in and going by the tons of safety features incorporated.


 #2. Best Telescoping Extension Ladder- Generic EN131  

Generic EN131 Std. 12.5Ft Aluminum Telescopic Tel escoping Ladder Extension Exte nd Loft

Telescoping extension ladders look extremely cool and the Generic EN131 is certainly no exception. Moreover, they are really portable – finding space to tuck away the EN131 in your packed garage should provide no hassle. In a nutshell, you are likely to fall in love with the eye-catching design of this lightweight extension ladder. 

Consistent extension – The height adjustment system of this extension ladder easily serves as its distinguishing factor. It adopts an effective 1-foot height increment system extending from 2.5 feet above the ground, all the way up to 12.5 feet. The user-friendly increments ensure that you easily adjust it to the specific height you want.

Heavy-duty build – You can always bet on the best aluminum extension ladder to serve you right for years to come. This reliable ladder adopts a sturdy aluminum frame that not only enhances durability, but also portability. In short, it is a light-weight, yet sturdy extension ladder that can be used for almost any task at hand. This not to mention the 300 lbs weight capacity it handles in simplistic fashion.

Spring-loaded lock mechanism – Safety is a paramount priority when shopping around for extension ladders. This aluminum telescopic ladder has you covered with an effective spring-loaded locking mechanism on each rung. This ensures that it stays extended to the set height regardless of abuse.

Pros:

  • Collapses to 34” for simplistic storage.
  • Lightweight aluminum frame weighing only 26 lbs.
  • Budget-friendly price tag.
  • Reliable at handling weights of up to 300 lbs.

Cons:

  • Easy to pinch your fingers when collapsing it if not careful.

Overall, the EN131 serves as the ideal extension ladder for those on a budget or homeowners looking for something less-bulky and portable.


#3. Best Multi Use Ladder- Idealchoice 

OxGord Aluminum Folding Scaffold Multi-Purpose Ladder 12.5-Feet

What We Liked Most About This Product

The sheer engineering adopted by this ladder makes it unique in more ways than you can imagine. This portable extension ladder easily folds to five convenient positions, making it ideal for plenty applications in an array of niches. If you are in the market for a do-it-all extension ladder, it would undoubtedly be in your best interest to check out this multi position ladder scaffold and for valid reasons.

Keep going through the review to learn more about the product.

Features and Benefits

19.5-foot height adjustment – while this ladder can conform to almost every adjustment possible, it can also serve as a reliable 19.5-foot ladder for residential and commercial applications. This is quite impressive considering that it only stands at 4.95 feet when folded. This reliable extension ladder can also handle weights of up to 330 lbs when in use – another impressive feat.

Seven adjustments – extension ladders are meant to add a little height to your life, but what if you bumped into a product that could do more? Well, the Scaffold Ladder does. You can use it in five different ways including serving as a temporary bridge. Its flexibility makes it ideal for use in an array of applications ranging from construction to above ground pool ladders.

Effective hinge system – unlike most extension ladders in our review that sport conventional latch systems, this ladder comes with multi-position smooth operating hinges that you can lock into your preferred position once you unfold it. The conventional hinge system enhances safety to not only optimum levels, but also flexibility.

Pros:

  • Highly flexible design that allows it to be used in various ways
  • Sturdy, yet lightweight frame for easy transportation
  • Portable collapsed height– easy storage
  • Budget-friendly price tag

Cons:

  • Its flexible nature somewhat compromises its sturdiness, meaning it isn’t advisable for use in any application that comes close to its maximum weight limit.

Overall, this is a great ladder that we would recommend for simple DIY tasks at home. Its highly innovative and flexible design can be of great help at home – from helping your kids climb on bunks, to serving as pool ladders.


#4. Best Medium-Duty Ladder- Werner D1224-2

Werner D1224-2 225-Pound Duty Rating Aluminum Flat D-Rung Extension Ladder, 24-Foot

What We Liked Most About This Product

Werner is a popular brand that has a reputation for manufacturing high-quality extension ladders such as the D122-2. This 24 foot extension ladder is perfect for medium-duty use ranging from simple home repair tasks to residential construction just to name a few.


You know what really gets us excited?

Stability and safety rank as its greatest strengths and you'll certainly get a stable work surface at all times.

Features and Benefits
Here are some of the features to expect with the D122-2 extension ladder by Werner.

Shu-Lok system and twist-proof design – most extension ladders are known to twist from time to time, but not the D122-2 series from Werner. It packs a patented ALFLO rung joint design intended at deterring any form twisting regardless of abuse. Moreover, you get a reliable foot design consisting of spurs and of course, the Shu-Lok feature that sums up to make for a reliable extension ladder ideal for use even under wet conditions.

Type II duty rating – a type II rated extension ladder means simply that it is safe for use with a maximum load capacity of up to 225 pounds. The sturdy aluminum, slip-resistant D-rungs adopted in its design makes it one of the most reliable Type II rated extension ladders in the niche. They provide a flat, convenient standing surface ideal for most medium-duty applications.

Spring-loaded lock mechanism – adjusting the height of this ladder is as smooth as melted butter thanks to its interlocking side rails, smooth-operating pulleys, and spring-loaded locks. In short, it will lock at the adjusted height regardless of abuse.

Pros:


  • Sturdy and durable aluminum frame
  • Mar-resistant end caps to hold it in place
  • Smooth operating pulley and interlocking side rails
  • Shu-Lok feature for a flat working surface


Cons:

  • Not ideal for heavy-duty use such as commercial construction

In a nutshell, we would recommend this Werner ladder for those in the market for a medium-duty product ideal for home use.


#5. Best Budget- Friendly Ladder- Ohuhu EN131

Ohuhu 12.5ft EN131 Aluminum Telescopic Extension Ladder, Extendable Telescoping Ladder with Spring Loaded Locking Mechanism Non-slip Ribbing 330 Pound Capacity

What We Liked Most About This Product

The Ohuhu extension ladder stands out anywhere – similar to its name. It is a reliable product with tons of exciting features to look forward to. What charmed us most on this ladder is its effective locking mechanism. As you may already know, most telescopic ladders are notorious for “finger-pinching” users when collapsing them. However, the Ohuhu extension ladder is entirely different.

Features and Benefits
Let’s dive right in and have a look at what to expect more.

Effective locking mechanism with bonus strap – It adopts an intelligent extend and lock system complete with thumb buttons. All you need to do is press the smooth, effortless buttons, tie it up using the heavy-duty carrying closure strap and voila!

Consistent 12-step adjustment – This telescopic ladder can unfold into a 12.5-foot giant in only 12 steps. It is designed from a sturdy and durable aluminum alloy material for optimal stability, meaning you can be guaranteed of safety at all times more so thanks to the wider-than-usual steps provided.

Pros:

  • Anti-pinch telescopic design with plastic pillars in between the steps
  • Portable design comes with a bonus, heavy-duty carrying closure strap
  • Designed to European safety standards
  • Durable and convenient

Cons:

  • Quite expensive compared to other telescopic extension ladders of its caliber.

In conclusion, this is one of the recommended extension ladders currently. We recommend this Ohuhu ladder for homeowners looking for a reliable accessory to clean gutters and perform other homely DIY tasks.


#6. Best Safe Ladder- Louisville FE1716 Type I 

Louisville Ladder FE1716 Fiberglass Extension Ladder, Type I, 16 Feet, 250 Pound Duty Rating

What We Liked Most About This Product

It should come as no surprise that this is our second inclusion from the manufacturer Louisville. This brand is well- known for its super safe ladder line up and the FE1716 is indeed no exception. The most wondering fact on the FE1716 is its two extra heavy-duty slide guides makes this ladder super safe to use.

Features and Benefits
Here are some of the features to expect.

.Quick latch rung lock – as with most of its product, Louisville threw in the reliable, quick latch rung lock system for optimal safety. It ensures that it remains locked in at the set height as long as the weight capacity isn’t compromised.

Serrated D-Rungs – most extension ladders are best left for when the weather is sunny, but not with the FE1716. It adopts highly effective serrated D-rings that provide a slip-resistant working surface, alongside mar-resistant rail end caps to protect the landing surface.

Pros:


  • User-friendly heavy-duty steel shoe with extra-thick rubber treads makes it easy to use
  • Ideal for use in electrical platforms thanks to its fiberglass material
  • Can easily carry loads of up to 250 pounds
  • Smooth slide function

Cons:

  • As is the case with most Louisville products, you will part with a hefty amount for this quality extension ladder.

While it is somewhat expensive for home use, it is an all-rounder that you can use in virtually all applications ranging from construction to residential tasks. We recommend it for the do-it-all upper fixer in the market for a reliable accessory.


#7. Best for Professional Use- DeWalt DXL3020-16PT

DeWalt DXL3020-16PT 16-Feet Fiberglass Extension ladder Type IA with 300-Pound Duty Rating, 16-Feet

What We Liked Most About This Product

Unless you live under a cave, DeWalt is a brand you must have come across at some point. The popular manufacturer lays claim to almost every reliable DIY accessory including this premium Type IA rated extension ladder. Our greatest impression with DXL3020 is its handy top. This innovative feature will definitely improve the user experience.

Features and Benefits
Let’s have a look at what more to expect from this ladder.

Type 1A rating – What else would you expect from a reliable brand such as DeWalt? The Type 1A rating this ladder boasts means it can easily handle a maximum load capacity of up to 300 pounds. It adopts a heavy-duty fiberglass frame ideal for serious DIY’ers and professionals.

Hardware tray – DeWalt has a knack for covering its users in all ways possible, and this is evident from the brand’s high attention to detail in all products they craft. With this extension ladder, you get a convenient hardware tray to store all your essentials ranging from tools to drills.

Pros:

  • Ideal for use in the electrical field thanks to a fiberglass construction and non-conductive rails
  • Comes with aluminum swivel steel shoes for enhanced stability
  • Durable frame with polyester veil-covered rails for extended lifespan

Cons:

  • Somewhat expensive price tag

The long and short of it is, you can always rely on a reliable brand such as DeWalt to give you nothing but the best. This ladder is an all-rounded product that we would recommend for home and professional-use any day.


Best Extension Ladder Buying Guide

So, are you ready to purchase the best extension ladder?

Wait!

Not all extension ladders will be perfect to meet your needs. Before selecting the right ladder for the job or home use, you need to consider some basic things.

Buying the right extension ladder mainly depends on your requirements. So, first, ask yourself-

  • Where will you use the ladder?
  • How much weight do you need to be load on the extension ladder?
  • What is the maximum height that you may need to reach?
  • Does your work involve electricity or not?

Then, consider the factors that effect on your ladder selection. The key elements of the extension ladder selection are:

# Ladder Height

Your required reach height will determine the right ladder size.

You need to buy a ladder which is somewhat taller than your required reach height. That means you have to add a few feet to your required height. For safety concern, your ladder should be 4 feet more than your reach height.

# PERFORMANCE- Weight & load capacity

Load capacity is the second most crucial factor to consider. Take into consideration your job demands and the load capacity of the ladder. Also, consider the frequency of use and the weight of the materials hauling up the ladder.

# Materials Matter

Extension ladders come with aluminum, aluminum alloy or fiberglass construction. Choose which best fits your needs.

Aluminum extension ladders: 

  • Strong but lightweight.
  • Expensive

Fiberglass extension ladders: 

  • Non-conductive, so safe to use if you work with electricity.
  • Heavier than aluminum ladders.

# Safety Features

Before buying a ladder, you must check the safety features of the model. Some common safety features that you should check:

  • D-shape rung
  • Anti-slip foot shoe
  • Slip-resistant pad

What’s more, your extension ladder should come with locks that will secure it when folded or extended.

# Ease of use

Your selected extension ladder needs to be easy to use, easy to extend and collapse. It also should be easy to carry and user-friendly.

Why Should You Use Extension Ladder?

  • First of all, extension ladders are compact. These are easy to handle, easy to store and transport.
  • Secondly, these ladders feature a special design intended for unique applications. For this, they come to improved safety and productivity.
  • Single section extension ladder provides easy access to mid-range heights.
  • check
    You can use a single section ladder for cleaning gutters, reaching windows or any medium height requirement.
  • check
    A multi-section ladder is convenient to be used both outdoors and indoors.
  • check
    Multi-section ladders provide easy access for higher applications. You can use them for a wide range of tasks at varies elevations

Extension Ladder Accessories

To make an Extension ladder easier and safe to use, a number of add-on accessories are available in the market. Some of these are:

  • Stabilizer
  • Leveling legs
  • Ladder mitts

Stabilizer

A stabilizer is a wide U-shaped bar that attaches to the top of the fly ladder. It’s a very useful accessory for using with an extension ladder. It braces the ladder off the house.

Leveling legs/ levelers

If the ground where you’ll place the ladder is uneven, leveling legs help you to position the ladder correctly and of course safely.

Leveling legs attach to the feet of the ladder and these extend independently.

Ladder mitts

Ladder mitts are one type of little rubbery end caps. These are used with rails on the fly section of the ladder. If you place a ladder against a wall, it can easily scratch paint and leave scuff marks there. But ladder mitts provide a soft protective bar that prevents this type of unwanted damage of the wall paint.

Extension Ladder Safety Rules

Some very essential safety rules (OSHA recommended) while using an extension ladder are:

  • Some very essential OSHA extension ladder safety rules are:
  • An extension ladder should be able to support minimum four times of its maximum intended load.
  • Before using an extension ladder, have an experienced person to check it.
  • If you find any damage issue on the ladder, immediately mark it with a “defective” sign. Never try to use a damaged extension ladder.
  • You must place your extension ladder at the correct angle(Click here to Ladder Angle). If you set it against a wall, make sure the bottom of the ladder is ¼ of its working length away from the wall.
  • Make sure that there is no object around the bottom and top of the ladder that can impede the spaces.
  • Avoid using an extension ladder horizontally.
  • If you need to work near power lines, keep the ladder at least 10 feet away from the power lines.
  • You must read the ladder manufacturer instructions and should follow it carefully.

How to Place Extension Ladders

  • First, make sure that the surface you want to place your extension ladder is firm, stable and level. Never attempt to use your ladder on a mud, gravel or sand surfaces.
  • Place plywood or flat wooden sheet down and place the ladder’s base on it.
  • If the surface isn’t level, use leg levelers.
  • Open the ladders so that the top section rests on the bottom section.
  • Maintain the horizontal distance ¼ of the working length between the top support and the ladder feet.

How To Store Extension Ladder In Garage

To store your ladder in a garage or storeroom, follow the steps below:

  • Choose a place that fits your ladder’s dimensions. Make sure that the site is distant from power lines.
  • The best option is to hang the ladder on a wall by using the garage storage hooks.
  • Install the ladder hanger hooks or ladder hanging brackets into the studs of the wall.
  • Hang your extension ladder horizontally.

Before hanging your ladder, know its height, width and weight. Also, learn the weight capacity of the wall hook. You also need to know the weight capacity of the ceiling or wall with which you’ll hang the ladder.

Conclusion

To make reaching the challenging height less complicated and more convenient, investing in an extension ladder is a wise idea.

We hope this list of the 7 best extension ladders is exactly what you’re looking for. This list has not only saved your time trying to find the right extension ladder for your need but also helps you get the most value for your money!

FAQ About Extension Ladder

# Is it possible to take apart the extension ladder?

Yes, it’s possible. You can separate the two sections of an extension ladder. And you can use it one section as a single ladder.

# How often do I need to inspect my extension ladder?

You should inspect your extension ladder regularly to ensure that it’s in the safe working condition. You must inspect it each time before using it.

Carry out a formal inspection by a specialist or experienced person every 3 to 6 months. You should keep the records of these formal inspections.

# Do extension ladder expire?

No. Extension ladder doesn’t come with any expire date. As long as you treat it with care and maintain the proper storage techniques, you can use it safely.

Stephen Colbert
 

Stephen Colbert is a specialist in avionics technology. He has been involved in avionics technology since 1993. He spent more than 15 years writing about high tech gadgets. Numerous publications have interviewed him. He is very passionate about sharing his knowledge.

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