Aluminium is one of the most abundant metals we have on the earth and it's also pretty great for making ladders! It's lightweight, durable and resistant to corrosion so it's perfect for making ladders that need to be transported from one place to another. Over time, you might notice patches on your aluminium ladder that are starting to appear a dull grey colour. This is aluminium oxide, and it's totally normal!
While aluminium oxide won't cause any harm to your ladder, you might want to remove it so your aluminium ladder looks shiny and new again. Many of our customers are tradespeople who need to bring their ladders in and out of people's homes every day. A clean, well looked after aluminium ladder will look more professional and last you a lifetime.
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1. Start with a scrub
To remove the surface dirt, you'll need to scrub your ladder. Grab a cleaning cloth, a bucket of warm soapy water and start scrubbing. If you've left your aluminium ladders outside, in a garage or somewhere exceedingly dirty, you may need to use a stiff brush to really get the dirt out of the nooks and crannies.
2. Grab an acidic aluminium cleaner
The best thing you can use to clean the oxidisation off your aluminium ladder is an acid. There are special aluminium cleaners on the market that you can buy in most DIY stores, but if you're looking for a home remedy - vinegar would work too. All soak your cloth in the vinegar (or the aluminium cleaner) and rub it along the surface of your ladder. Leave it alone for 5-10 minutes.
At this point, you should notice that the acid starts to live the oxidisation away from the surface of the aluminium. Again, if there are stubborn patches, don't be afraid to get in there with a stiff brush to help the product do its job. Finally, grab a clean cloth and wipe away the cleaning solution and lifted oxidisation. That's it, your aluminium ladder should be shined up & ready for the task at hand.
Tips on storage
Here are a few tips on storing your aluminium ladders that should help to prevent a secondary build-up of aluminium oxide occurring. Read the full blog on ladder storage if you want to find out more.
- Keep your ladder somewhere clean, dry and out of the weather
- Always remove surface dirt before putting your ladder away
If you're looking for a new aluminium ladder to add to your toolkit, we have a wide range available. From extension ladders to step ladders, you'll find an aluminium option in almost all of our ladder categories! Give us a call on 01446 789538 if you have any questions.