How Long Do Aluminum Ladders Last? My Real Experience

Last Updated on September 2, 2022 by William R. Vargas

You may be contemplating aluminum ladders, but, “how long do aluminum ladders last?” are they worth your money? Of course, yes. They are strong and durable ladders to serve you for many years.

An aluminum ladder is a great tool when it comes to reaching heightened objects or when performing high-risk tasks. With this tool, you can change bulbs, paint, decorate your house, restore gutters, clean the cabinets, etc.

In this article, you will learn more about aluminum ladders and how they can benefit you. Still, you get to know the downsides and how to take care of them to increase durability.  

What Are The Pros And Cons Of An Aluminum Ladder?

Aluminum Ladders Last

Every piece of equipment got upsides and downsides. Let’s explore the pros and cons of aluminum ladders.

Pros

  • Light in weight

One thing that makes an aluminum ladder convenient is its lightweight. Everybody will love to have a portable ladder for DIY projects. With this tool, you can comfortably perform mobile tasks. You hold it with your hand when moving it from one to another. Again, you can fold it well for outdoor projects. You can never compare this material with timber and fiberglass when it comes to weight.  

  • Sturdy ladder

When shopping for a ladder, you can find one that can strongly hold you to avoid falling. So, an aluminum ladder can be an ideal tool of strength that can withstand pressure despite the pounds. It’s a material that doesn’t split so easily during welding, so safety is guaranteed.

  • Low maintenance costs

When shopping for a ladder, the maintenance cost must ring in your mind. You may find yourself spending more on maintenance than how you bought the ladder. Aluminum ladders are easy to maintain. You do not have to oil or polish them as they are naturally durable.

  • Quality material

Another advantage of aluminum ladders is that they are of quality and do not rust so easily. When exposed to moisture, aluminum oxidizes to develop aluminum oxide on the surface of the ladder, which protects it from rust. But, it is not advisable to expose them to moisture for a long period.

  • Fire-resistant

An aluminum ladder can’t catch fire so easily. So you can use it in case of a fire outbreak. This is the reason why firefighters use aluminum ladders.

  • Affordable and highly versatile

The aluminum ladders are cheaper compared to fiberglass and steel ladders. So your tight budget, you can get one to serve you for some years. Additionally, you can use this ladder in many ways around your home. Still, it’s ideal for commercial use.

Cons

  • Aluminum ladders are good conductors of electricity. So, they are not safe around live wires.

How Long Will An Aluminum Extension Ladder Last?

An aluminum extension ladder can last for many years. But, it would help if you took all the precautions given by the manufacturer. Always have the right load capacity, don’t keep the ladder outside for many hours, and proper handling is vital.

What Are Some Factors That Can Affect The Lifespan Of An Aluminum Ladder?

If you have an aluminum ladder, proper care is crucial if you want to increase its lifespan. Check out the below factors that can affect the longevity of the ladder.

Poor storage

Though the aluminum ladder is a quality product, it is advisable always to keep it safe. Yes, it may not rust or be affected by strong UV rays, but the quality may go down if left for a long. So, don’t leave your ladders outside for long. Again, when left outside, someone may tamper with it.

Exceeding the instructed load capacity

Each aluminum ladder is made for a particular, so they come with different load capacities. Make sure you are keen on the recommended load for your ladder to remain in the same shape to avoid reforming. Follow the given rules, and you won’t experience any deformation.

How Can You Extend The Lifespan Of Your Aluminum Ladder?

Use the right storage solution

When you are not using your aluminum ladder, make sure you store it in the right place. Make sure it is not exposed to strong sunlight or rainwater. The quality will never remain the same, reducing its lifespan.

To avoid damage, you can consider handing the ladder horizontally on ranks. And also, avoid storing other materials on top of the ladder.

Proper usage

Every aluminum ladder comes with a recommended load capacity. Never exceed it because it may deform the ladder. A deformed ladder can’t serve you for long. If you consider the right ladder load, you will have a chance to use that ladder for many years without deformations. But, always remember there is no ladder expiration date-proper care is crucial.

Proper handling

It is good to handle your ladder with care. Your aluminum ladder should always be clean to avoid slippery steps. Again, if you want your ladder to serve you for long, never drop it carelessly. It may get damaged, or some hinges may get loose.

Further, during transportation, you should be secured in a way it doesn’t bump against other equipment.

Inspect for cracks

Before using your aluminum ladder, inspect it to check some issues. It may have cracks or dents. If you leave such issues for a long, your ladder may not be reliable for long.

Are There Any Special Care Instructions For Aluminum Ladders?

For your aluminum ladder to have a long lifespan, there are some special care practices you must practice.

  • Proper handling is a must, and that is why you must keep your ladder clean always. Ensure it’s free from mud, oil, and other substances that can inconvenience you when climbing. Also, you should never drop your ladder carelessly. This can damage or make the hinges to be loose. And if by bad luck it happens, inspect it for damages.
  • Your aluminum should be stored in the right place. You can consider installing hooks on the wall line of your garage to hang your ladder horizontally. And it is not advisable to place other equipment on top of your ladder. Your ladder should never be exposed to strong UV rays or rainwater on storage matters.
  • Another special care instruction on aluminum ladders is to be careful when transporting one. The ladder should be stored securely to avoid bumping with other tools.
  • Inspecting your ladder is another way of caring for your ladder. You need to consider if your tool has missing rugs, feet, or spreaders. Still, you must confirm if they are loose. This helps you know if your ladder has issues that need to be rectified. Also, some parts are prone to damage, so examining your ladder is important.  

What Are Some Signs That An Aluminum Ladder Needs To Be Replaced?

Though there is no OSHA ladder expiration date, an aluminum ladder can’t be used forever. A time comes for wear and tear, which is why inspecting your ladder is vital. You must keep on checking in case of damages. Again, on a ladder that has been in use for many years, stability becomes an issue.

Here are some signs that can signal ladder replacement.

  • Aluminum ladders are prone to dent. Suppose you see some dents; start thinking of replacing your ladder. Indentation reduces the lifespan of a ladder.
  • It’s time to replace your aluminum ladder if you see signs of deformation. You can replace the rungs but remember; you can’t replace the rails. If the rails are dented or reformed, it’s time to find another ladder. Why? It’s never safe to use such a ladder.
  • Also, the rubber on the feet can wear off, making your ladder slip off anytime you are climbing. If it has, you can replace the ladder or suffer from fall injuries. As your ladder ages, you need to be keener on its stability.

What Are Some Common Problems With Aluminum Ladders?

When investing in a ladder, you must be keen on the upsides and downsides. This will help you note a ladder that won’t give you many issues. Like; aluminum conducts electricity. So, don’t expose your ladder to live wires. You may be electrocuted.

Corrosion is also common with the aluminum ladder when exposed to moisture/wetness. Your ladder should be stored in a dry area.

Aluminum Or Fiberglass, Which Ladders Last Long?

On durability, a fiberglass ladder can last for a long. The reason is that they are resistant to all weather conditions. Like when exposed to sunlight, it’s hard for a fiberglass ladder to lose its strength or even rust when left in the rain. It’s a superior material.

You may be asking yourself, how long do aluminum ladders last? They are also durable but when kept away from strong sunlight and moisture.

Can You Leave Aluminum Ladders Outside?

Leaving your aluminum ladder is like reducing its lifespan. Aluminum material reduces its strength when exposed to UV rays. Again, it tends to rust when left in the rain. So it is good to find a better part to keep on your ladder.

If your garage doesn’t have enough space, you can consider building a shade for your ladder. But still, a ladder left outside can be stolen.

Conclusion

Aluminum ladders have been a great tool for residential and commercial settings. It is a ladder that will never fail you due to the many advantages it possesses. But how long do aluminum ladders last? The lifespan will depend on how you will use the ladder. With proper care, this ladder can go on for five years.

Proper care is paramount by checking on where you are storing your ladder. Also, you should clean it before and after use.

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