A man carrying a Little Giant Ladder
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The 11 Best Ladders for Every Home Project, According to Glowing Reviews

Whether you’re painting walls or cleaning out gutters, every home needs a ladder. Shop the best options reviewers love.
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It's no secret that homeowners need a variety of tools for home improvement projects. Of the necessary tools—like drills, screwdrivers, wrenches, and hammers—ladders serve an important role in getting DIY projects done. Because ladders come in different sizes and forms designed for specific settings, homeowners and professionals have a lot to consider before making their purchase.

What to Consider When Buying a Ladder

The Project

The classic step ladder is common in households because of its versatility. It can be used indoors or outdoors, but it isn't very helpful (or safe) to use against a wall. Extension and telescoping ladders are great indoor/outdoor ladders that lean against walls for projects like cleaning gutters. Other ladders to consider include versatile multi-position ladders, twin ladders that can hold two people at once, podium ladders for 360-degree work, and attic ladders.

Material

Aluminium Ladders

Aluminum ladders are lighter than most fiberglass options without compromising stability,, making them ideal for household jobs like painting. However, they are electrical conductors, so if you're planning on doing electrical work, use a fiberglass ladder instead. 

Fiberglass Ladders

Fiberglass ladders are typically more durable, stable, and heavier than aluminum or wood models. They're weather- and flame-resistant, and they are not conductors of electricity, making them the best choice if you're working near power lines or electrical wires. 

Wood Ladders 

Wood ladders are sturdier than you might think. However, they can erode with time and when exposed to water and humidity. They are technically non-conductive, but they can be conductive when wet and some have metal bearings that are conductive.

Height

The height of a ladder and its reach height are two different considerations. Before starting your project, measure the height of the space you're working in, whether that's the height of your ceiling or roof. Different ladder styles have different reach heights to keep you safe while working. Step ladders typically have a reach height of 4 feet above the ladder height: meaning an 8-foot ladder has a 12-foot reach height. Multi-position ladders have a 1-foot reach height above the ladder height, and extension ladders have a reach height that's 1 foot less than the height of the ladder. If you're looking for an attic ladder or fire escape ladder, measure the ceiling height or height from your window to the ground.

Safety

Safety is the most important thing to keep in mind when using ladders, so make sure you're using the right ladder for the right job. Every ladder has a weight capacity and duty rating ranging from Type 3 to 1AA. Type 3 starts at a weight capacity of 200 pounds and is recommended only for indoor household use. Type 1AA is the most sturdy ladder with a weight capacity of 375 pounds for professional and home use.

When using a ladder, double-check that it's positioned correctly and on stable ground. It's also a good idea to have someone around to spot you or provide extra stability. 

Now that you know what to look for, here are our recommendations for the best ladders on the market, according to rave reviews.

The Best Ladders to Buy in 2021

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Little Giant Ladders
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Best Overall: Werner NXT Six-Foot Fiberglass Step Ladder

This classic step ladder is essential for its versatile indoor and outdoor use. It's 6 feet tall with a 10-foot reach height and it comes with a magnetic strip and hardware bin on top for easy access to tools. The slip-resistant fiberglass ladder has a Type 1A rating that holds up to 300 pounds. 

"I am a homeowner and needed a ladder to do some interior ceiling work," one reviewer said. "This ladder is just right. Feels sturdy. The top of the ladder is magnetized to hold screws (nice touch) and designed with holes and indents to hold tools, paints, plaster, etc."

Buy It: Werner NXT Six-Foot Fiberglass Step Ladder ($99, Lowe's)

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Rated: Little Giant Multi-Position Ladder

This Type 1A, 300-pound capacity multi-position ladder has garnered more than 7,600 five-star ratings and is a best-seller on Amazon. The ladder can transform from an A-frame step ladder to an extension ladder or a trestle-and-plank system, and it even has adjustable heights for individual sides to fit nicely on stairs. It includes locks to keep it in place each time you reposition it and has wheels for easy transport.

One reviewer wrote, "I'll never go back to a normal ladder, and this will last forever so I'll never need to. It's so easy to use and sturdy and safe. There may be similar ones out there, but these guys did a great job at design and quality, well worth the price. I love that it folds up in a little corner of the garage until needed."

Buy It: Little Giant Multi-Position Ladder ($229, Amazon)

Little Giant Ladders
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Best for Painting: Gorilla Ladders Dual Platform Heavy-Duty Hybrid Ladder

With a 10-foot reach height and a removable bucket for paint trays and supplies, this household step ladder is perfect for painting. It's made with durable aluminum and has a Type 1A 300-pound duty rating, so you can use it outdoors, too. It even has standing platforms on the top two steps for extra stability on the job. 

"This ladder is great for around-the-house projects," one reviewer said. "It's very sturdy, and the project bucket is amazingly handy. I 100% recommend it."

Buy It: Gorilla Ladders Dual Platform Heavy-Duty Hybrid Ladder, $70 (originally $80), The Home Depot

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Extension Ladder: Werner Fiberglass Extension Ladder

Every household needs an outdoor extension ladder, whether it's for cleaning the gutters or hanging holiday lights. This 28-foot model by Werner is made out of non-conductive fiberglass that's slip- and weather-resistant. It also has a Type 1A duty rating and adjustable locks. 

"This ladder is solid and stable," one reviewer wrote. "Very easy to use. The rope and pulley are high quality too. I can't wait to clean my gutters!"

Buy It: Werner Fiberglass Extension Ladder ($349, The Home Depot)

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Lightweight: Little Giant Flip-N-Lite Step Ladder

For professionals and homeowners alike, your ladder can be a burden if it's too heavy. This 14-pound aluminum ladder is lightweight yet sturdy enough for basic household jobs. The Type 1A duty-rated ladder comes with a large standing platform and a tool tray on top. Plus, it easily folds for simple storage.

One reviewer wrote, "Great, sturdy ladder that supports up to 300 pounds. It's so light that it's easy to maneuver where you need it. Best ladder to keep inside for high ceilings."

Buy It: Little Giant Flip-N-Lite Step Ladder, $110 (originally $143), Amazon

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Telescoping Ladder: Ohuhu Aluminum Telescoping Ladder

Similar to an extension ladder, telescoping ladders need to lean against something in order to help you safely get the job done. Unlike extension ladders, however, this telescoping ladder extends and retracts to get to the exact height you need. It can extend up to 12.5 feet and holds up to 330 pounds. It's also easy to store and carry when fully compressed. 

Many reviewers, like this one, love it for their RV campers: "I'm a heavy guy that is careful while climbing aloft. I need something sturdy and supportive while working. It collapses to about 3 feet tall and extends to over 12 feet and supports me well while I'm on the roof of my RV camper or working in the house. It is easy to extend or collapse for easy mobility."

Buy It: Ohuhu Aluminum Telescoping Ladder, $120 (originally $200), Amazon

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Attic Ladder: Fakro LMS Insulated Steel Attic Ladder

An attic ladder is a necessary tool to access those hard-to-reach seasonal storage items. The Fakro insulated steel attic ladder fits an 8-foot ceiling height and has a Type 1A duty rating with a 350-pound weight capacity. It can easily install on an attic door, just be sure to closely follow the instructions or get professional assistance. 

"Very good quality, solid construction, and mechanics, the ladder is sturdy and stable," one reviewer wrote. "It's pretty much everything you would want in an attic ladder."

Buy It: Fakro LMS Insulated Steel Attic Ladder ($332, The Home Depot)

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Twin Ladder: Louisville Ladder Fiberglass Twin Step Ladder

This twin ladder allows two people to work at once with stability. The heavy-duty fiberglass ladder is a Type 1AA model with a 375-pound weight capacity. It's equipped with slip-resistant footing, steel hinges, and a shock-absorption construction to keep it from wobbling when two people are working. 

"Excellent product," one reviewer said. "I am not a fan of heights, but this ladder is very sturdy and durable and I do not mind working on it all day. I would give it six stars if I could."

Buy It: Louisville Ladder Fiberglass Twin Step Ladder ($346, The Home Depot)

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Podium Ladder: Werner Fiberglass Podium Step Ladder

Podium ladders allow homeowners to have a 360-degree working area. This 8-foot fiberglass podium ladder is slip- and weather-resistant for indoor and outdoor use. The Type 1A duty-rating holds you steady no matter what you're working on. 

One reviewer said, "I have 10-foot ceilings and ladders make me so nervous. I have to change the light bulbs and do some painting and wanted a ladder I felt safe using. This platform ladder makes me feel totally safe. It is really sturdy and doesn't wobble. Very happy with my purchase."

Buy It: Werner Fiberglass Podium Step Ladder ($274, Lowe's)

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Step Stool: HBTower Three Step Folding Ladder

Every home needs a step ladder to help you find items in hard-to-reach places. This durable, three-step ladder holds up to 500 pounds to support basic household projects. It's made with a steel frame and the steps have non-slip rubber grips. And it's foldable, making it easy to store. 

One reviewer wrote, "Love this step ladder! It's extremely sturdy but lightweight enough to move around. It's also easy to fold up and store. I like that the steps are wide, so my whole foot can stand on it, unlike a ladder where it gives you that wobbly feeling."

Buy It: HBTower Three Step Folding Ladder, $60 (originally $70), Amazon

Little Giant Ladders
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Best Fire Escape Ladder: Kidde Two-Story Fire Escape Ladder

Fire escape ladders help loved ones safely exit your home in case of an emergency. This folded two-story fire escape ladder comes ready to use with a quick-release function. The flame-resistant metal holds up to 1,000 pounds, so several people can climb down the ladder at once. Note: The fire escape ladder is designed for single use only—discard the ladder after its first use. 

"My husband is a firefighter so we try to be prepared for the unexpected," one reviewer said. "We just moved to a new house and wanted to have an escape plan. This is now stored in our bedroom. Now we hope we never need to use it."

Buy It: Kidde Two-Story Fire Escape Ladder, $45 (originally $68), Amazon