Escape Ladders

The most important ladder you can purchase is the ladder that can save your life. In the event of a fire or other emergency in your home you may not be able to use the conventional methods of getting to the first floor from any floor above that. In these situations an escape ladder may save your life or the lives of those you love. When buying ladders it is important to make sure you purchase the correct size and type of ladder for the situation at hand. In the case of escape ladders the first decision that you need to make is if you want your method of escape to be a permanent fixture attached in some way to your house or if you want a temporary escape ladder that can be stored in a convenient location when not in use. The permanent ladders are more stable and there is very little action needed when the emergency takes place to prepare the ladder and it is therefore easier to use for children. However; this solution is more expensive and intrusive than using a stored, temporary ladder.

No matter which type of escape ladder you decide on your next decision will be the kind of material you would like the ladder to be made of. Both permanent and temporary escape ladders come in a variety of materials such as nylon straps, steel, or chains. There is no specific weight capacity for each material so it is important to check with individual manufacturers to find out the weight capacity of their ladders. As a general rule the ladders that are permanently attached to the house have a higher weight capacity; however many manufacturers now offer heavy duty temporary escape ladders if you are concerned with the amount of weight the ladder can hold.

Escape ladders come in a variety of sizes as well starting at an appropriate length for a two-story house and ending at an appropriate length for six-story apartment complexes. The length of the ladder is important as you want to ensure that it will be close enough to the ground to not be a danger in and of itself. Another consideration that needs to be made for your safety is the number of standoffs that the ladder has. Standoffs are used to keep the ladder a short distance away from the house so you have room for foot holds while climbing down the rungs. Many escape ladders made today feature standoffs on every rung which is a very good idea. The more standoffs the ladder has the more stable it will be and safer for you and your children.

A method of escape is essential in every room that is above the ground floor and is a sleeping area. Be sure that a testing laboratory has certified the ladder you purchase to ensure the safety of yourself and your family. While most escape ladders can be used from any normal sized window you must also take into consideration the area below the window on your house and on the ground. A window on a second or third story that is placed directly above a window on a lower story of the house may not be an appropriate place to use an escape ladder. You must also be sure that you maintain the ground below your exit windows and that you keep it clear of bushes, shrubs, or rocks that could be dangerous in an emergency for anyone climbing down the ladder.

Ready to buy?

After researching the different brands and types of escape ladders and making a decision to buy your ladder the next step is finding it at a competitive price. We have compiled a list of dealers we recommend for escape ladders:

  • Fire Escape Systems offer a wide variety of escape ladders and provide helpful comparison charts.
  • First Alert also has a large selection of escape ladders and other safety equipment.
  • Bold Industries specializes in portable escape ladders.

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