Of course, not just any old ladder will do when you want safety and stability. That’s why we tracked down some that are OSHA-approved even though they are lightweight and compact.
Let’s take a closer look at the top aluminum telescoping ladders in this review to see which one is best for your needs.
Table of Contents
- 1 Telesteps 1600EP OSHA Compliant 16 ft Reach Professional Wide Step Telescoping Extension Ladder
- 2 Xtend & Climb 785P Aluminum Telescoping Ladder Type I Professional Series, 15.5-Foot
- 3 Generic EN131 Std. 12.5Ft Aluminum Telescopic Ladder
- 4 Xtend & Climb 780P Aluminum Telescoping Ladder Type IA Professional Series, 12.5-Foot
- 5 Werner MT-26 300-Pound Duty Rating Telescoping Multi-Ladder, 26-Foot
- 6 Tips for ladder safety
- 7 How to choose the best ladder
- 8 Conclusion
Telesteps 1600EP OSHA Compliant 16 ft Reach Professional Wide Step Telescoping Extension Ladder
Telesteps designed a winner when they made the 1600EP 16-foot Telescoping Extension Ladder. It’s OSHA-compliant for safety and Type 1A rated for up to 300 pounds. It’s perfect for getting access to an attic, reaching the top of an RV, or cleaning the gutters on a house.
Users love the wide steps and its 30-inch tall super-compact size when compressed. They say it’s very easy to use because it has fully automatic extension and retraction with a simple release.
The silicone-covered feet stay put where they’re planted, which is important when you’re several feet off the ground. When Telesteps says it’s a 16-foot reach ladder, they mean that’s the full extension. The actual usable reach is 12.5 feet.
The ladder frame is built from tough aluminum formed into elliptical tubes for strength. Telesteps’ ladders are rugged enough that they are used by the US military and law enforcement.
But tough and rugged doesn’t mean heavy. The 1600EP ladder weighs only 25 pounds. It’s resistant to rust and corrosion, and covered by a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty.
Xtend & Climb 785P Aluminum Telescoping Ladder Type I Professional Series, 15.5-Foot
The 785P is OSHA and ANSI rated and approved as Type 1, able to support up to 250 pounds. Its maximum extension is 15-1/2 feet, but its usable reach is 12.5 feet. It fully retracts down to only 36-1/2 inches tall so it fits in your closet, your trunk, or your shed. There’s a convenient closure strap and soft carrying handle to make it easier to manage since it weighs 36 pounds.
Being pinched by a telescoping ladder is painful. Xtend & Climb avoids this problem with their no-pinch angled thumb release and red/green locking tab indicators. The non-slip end caps make sure the ladder stays put where you place it. And the 19-3/4-inch-wide rings make it feel wide enough to use comfortably.
Although the ladder is well-built, protected against rust and dings by its anodized coating, it’s covered by a 6-month warranty for parts and repair.
Generic EN131 Std. 12.5Ft Aluminum Telescopic Ladder
Its 12.5-foot reach looks similar to both of the previous two ladders, until you take into account that this is its full extension, not the safe reach limit. The real reach would be about ten feet.
The ladder extends out in 1-foot increments with a spring-loaded mechanism at each rung. One user thoughtfully explained the safest way to extend and collapse the ladder without pinching fingers or thumbs. They said to collapse it from the top down. They also recommended making visual marks to help you see if the rungs are locked into place before you climb.
If the information so far is making you nervous, consider that this ladder is rated as an ANSI Type 1A certified for up to 300 pounds. But there is no information about a manufacturer’s warranty or guarantee. While you may save money by going with a Generic ladder, if you plan to use it a lot, it might be best to select a name brand.
Xtend & Climb 780P Aluminum Telescoping Ladder Type IA Professional Series, 12.5-Foot
When you extend the ladder, you can lock it by the foot. You don’t have to open it up all the way to use it. The red and green locking tabs will show you at a glance if it’s ready to use.
The reach of the 780P is a little less than the 785P. It’s a 12.5-foot ladder when fully extended, but the actual reach is about ten feet. It collapses down to 32-1/4-inches and weighs only 26 pounds. You can keep it safely closed with the closure strap and carry it with the built-in soft carrying handle. It comes with a 6-month warranty on parts and repair.
Werner MT-26 300-Pound Duty Rating Telescoping Multi-Ladder, 26-Foot
This review would not be complete without a telescoping A-frame ladder. Werner is a big name in ladders, and their MT-26 doesn’t disappoint. It’s a two-person stepladder, an extension ladder, or a scaffold all in one. Plus, it folds up compactly for storage.
It’s rugged and sturdy, rated for up to 300 pounds when it’s fully extended. But wait, it can also handle up to 300 pounds per side when you use it as a 2-person stepladder. The steps are all double-riveted and the bottom is flared extra-wide for stability. Each of the feet has a heavy-duty non-slip cap that won’t mar floors.
When it’s time to get to work, you can adjust the ladder to 37 different heights or positions. It’s true, just take a look at the user manual. You may never utilize every feature of this ladder with all of these options.
Adjusting it without crushing your fingers is easy with the soft-touch push knobs and spring-loaded J-locks for extending out in 1-foot increments. The maximum reach of the telescoping extension ladder is from 13 to 23 feet. When it’s formed into a stepladder, the reach is 6 to 11 feet. As a scaffold, the height is 4 feet 10 inches.
It weighs about 62 pounds and collapses down to 79 by 37 inches for storage. If you wish to learn about Werner’s warranty, check with the place where you buy it.
Now that we’ve covered the top telescoping ladders for sale, let’s do a quick review of their top characteristics.
Tips for ladder safety
See these tips for what you can do to increase your safety and well-being while using a ladder.
- Measure, measure, measure—if you know ahead of time how high you need to reach, you can select the perfect ladder for your needs.
- When you choose a ladder, take into account that the maximum extension doesn’t equal maximum length. There’s always a portion at the top of the ladder where there may be rungs or a platform, but it’s not made for you to stand upon.
- Look at the side of the rungs and test them while wearing your work shoes, if possible. If you need to stand on that ladder for a long period of time, will it be comfortable?
- If you’re up high, consider using a safety harness against falls. Generally speaking, if properly set up, a fall harness arrests a person within 6 feet. That’s usually enough to avoid striking a lower roof level or the ground.
- If you choose to use a safety harness, make sure it’s approved for at least 1800 pounds of force.
- Remember that the duty rating (such as Type 1, Type 1A) shows a maximum weight, but that weight includes both you and the tools you’ll be using.
- Maintain a 3-point contact with the ladder when you ascend and descend. That means one hand and two feet, or two hands and one foot, at all times.
- Stay off ladders when it’s raining. Wet aluminum doesn’t provide much of a grip.
- Learn how to foot a ladder, or plant it safely. Normally, this means you’ll lean it at a 75-degrees angle (where 90 degrees is straight up and down).
- Use the four to one rule—for every four feet of ladder height, move the base one foot away from the wall.
- When you place the ladder, make sure it’s not going to slide around on the surface. For example, very soft ground after a rain could be a problem. You may need to secure the ladder with a cleat or use another method to stabilize it.
- Wear sturdy shoes with non-slip soles. Clean off mud or wipe off water before you ascend.
- Keep your center of balance on the ladder. Don’t lean off to the side to grab something.
- Come down from the ladder immediately if you feel ill, faint, or dizzy. Work with a partner nearby to keep an eye on each other.
How to choose the best ladder
In a nutshell, choosing the best ladder depends on just a few factors. How high do you need to reach? Is it able to support the weight of the person using it plus their tools? Will it fit in the storage space you have available? The ladder’s own weight may also be important to you.
We hope you discovered the perfect telescoping ladder in our reviews today. May it help you get all your work done safely. Check back soon for more reviews of the top products for making life easier.