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08 Jun 2020

Double section extension ladder

When you purchase a ladder, it's important to know that your chosen ladder is suitable for the task(s) you have in mind.

If you need a ladder for work, you don't want a product that's only suitable for light DIY jobs around the house; conversely, there's no need to fork out for an industrial-grade ladder if you're only using it to repaint the living room.

But how can you tell which ladders are suitable for which applications?


The old system

Prior to 2018, there were three different ladder ratings that helped consumers to select the right ladder for their needs:

  • Class 1 (BS203) - Suitable for heavy industrial use
  • Class 2 (BSEN131) - Suitable for light trade use
  • Class 3 (BS2037) - Suitable for home / DIY use only

Of course, it's not always clear where 'trade' use ends and 'industrial' use begins. Furthermore, the old rules didn't have many specific requirements for slip resistance and other key considerations.

This may have been part of the reason why the three-tier system was replaced with a simpler two-class system in January 2018.


Current EN131 regulations

The EN131 ladder regulations were updated in early 2018. Since then, EN131-certified ladders have been sorted into just two classifications:

  • Professional - Ladders rated 'Professional' are suitable for professional use.

  • Non-Professional - Ladders rated 'Non-Professional' should not be used for trade or industrial applications, but they are suitable for home DIY jobs.

Under the revised regulations, all EN131-certified ladders (professional and non-professional) are required to have a maximum load rating of at least 150kg.

For more information about the current EN131 ladder regulations and what they require, read our blog post...

Ladder Regulations: EN131 Explained


What to look for when buying a ladder

When you're browsing the Ladders UK Direct website in search of a ladder that suits your requirements, be sure to check:

  • Max. load limit - The maximum weight the ladder can safely support.

  • Certification - Is the ladder classified for professional or domestic (non-professional) use?

  • Ladder type - Do you need a step ladder, an extension ladder, a combination ladder...?

If you're having trouble finding the type of ladder you need, please don't hesitate to get in touch with the Ladders UK Direct team.

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