Attic Ladders by FAKRO: Choosing The Right One
Where do you want to install it?
Do you have an existing attic ladder you’re just trying to replace? This would be the best spot for your new attic ladder. Measure your rough opening and view our list of FAKRO attic ladders and see which one works best for you.
If you don’t have a rough opening just yet then pick a spot in your home right under the attic ladder where the ladder could be accessed easily and installed between two ceiling joists (located on your attic floor) so when you open your ladder it won’t open up into a wall but rather a more open area.
What type of insulation or fire-protection do you want your attic ladder to have?
Most attics are extremely cold in the winter and boiling hot in the summer. Consider installing an insulated attic ladder or thermal if the room it is going in is a bedroom, hallways or living space.
If you’re installing your attic ladder in a garage then you may feel more comfortable purchasing an uninsulated model. Also, check with you cities code in case you are required to have a fire-rated attic ladder.
FAKRO’s fire-rated attic ladders are rated for 60 minutes which is a common requirement.
What is your floor to ceiling height?
In simpler terms, what is your ceiling height? Your rough opening will go hand in hand with it. While most of the time your ceiling height will cover what you need with the rough opening you have or plan on making.
For example, if your rough opening is 22” x 47” then you’re more likely to have a ceiling height somewhere around the 7’ to 9’ range. Larger rough openings like 30” x 54” will cover ceiling heights up to 10’ or more.
What is your rough opening?
Attic ladders come in all sorts of rough openings; meaning the size of the hole in your ceiling. This plays a key factor in selecting your attic ladders because it can either narrow down your choices or open them up.
The smaller your rough opening is the tighter it is going to feel going up into the attic space and you probably won’t be able to bring large items up there especially if you’re considering using it for storage. While a bigger rough opening is the more ideal, some cases will require a smaller size.
If you don’t have a cut out in your ceiling just yet then start with your floor to ceiling distance and refer back to the FAKRO catalog to see which rough openings work with your ceiling height and make the opening from that specification. You should also take into consideration the space between your ceilings joists or trusses and the length it could fit best.
Should you purchase a wooden attic ladder or metal attic ladder?
While it sometimes falls down to a preference, different materials will be able to get the job done easier and faster. How much of a load capacity will you need? For those who plan on using their attic ladders for maintenance on heavy equipment or storing larger items may want to think about getting a metal ladder.
FAKRO’s metal attic ladders are made of steel a metal that is known for being more durable, stronger, and can withhold heavy weight without bending or morphing.
For those looking to go into their attic once in a while, store small objects or want to just have a safer access way into their attic then FAKRO’s wooden attic ladders and the smaller scissor attic ladders are great options.
FAKRO’s scissor ladders are available in larger rough openings but even the smallest too! While the smallest rough opening is a 22” x 31”, it’s is a great ladder for those casually using their attic. The rungs double as handrails and it’s a perfect ladder if your attic access is in the closet.
What accessories are most important and worth spending the money on?
While accessories are not necessary they make a great addition to any attic ladder. Here is a great list of attic ladder accessories and their uses:
- LXS Stile Ends – These are the little plastic pieces on the bottom of the ladder that touch the floor. FAKRO’s most basic ladder LWP non-insulted and LWN insulated do not come with stile ends there for customer will have to purchase them separately. The LXS stile ends are a great buy also if you need to replace the current ones you have! The LXS stile ends for wooden ladders are brown while the ends for metal ladders are black.
- LXH Metal Handrail – This red metal handrail mounts to the upper top side of the ladder for additional support. These are great for casual and daily use ladders! You can even mount one to each side of the ladder. The only ladder that does not support handrails is the LST and LSF because the rungs double as handrails already.
- LXB-U Balustrade – These are essentially barriers surrounding the hole in your attic so when you get up into your attic and are walking around you slim your chances of forgetting about the hole and falling through. These are a great safety measure for those walking around the attic space!
- LXW-B Upper Hatch – Worried about cobwebs, dust or anything else that might fall onto your attic ladder while it is closed? Maybe want MORE insulation? FAKRO has something for that! FAKRO’s upper hatch is a door above your attic ladder that opens up into the attic so your ladder stays clear of debris and increases its thermal performance.
- LXL Trim Kit – These are trims (plastic or wood) that give your attic ladders rough opening a finished look after installing it. Most people will opt for the trim kits or even try to make their own.
- LXK Installation Brackets – While some FAKRO attic ladders are a one man/woman job the installation brackets help facilitate the installation.
- LXT Additional Step – Great for those who don’t want to swing their leg over the frame. While attic ladders make getting into your attic easier the extra step can make it flawless! This extra step fits most models with standard steps. It is installed in the wooden box frame right above the top step of the ladder.
- LSS Additional Step – These are the extra steps for the LST and LSF ladder. They will make your ladder longer to reach your ceiling height. If you have to order these make sure you’re purchasing the right step. Here’s a quick guide:
LSS-31 for LST rough openings: 22.5/31, 22.5/47, 22.5/54, 25/47 and 25/54
LSS-38 for LST rough openings: 27.5/31 and 30.5/54
LSS- 30 for LSF rough opening 22/47
LSS-32 for LSF rough opening 25/47
Making the right choice at the end of the day
This article should help you get started on the right foot in picking an attic ladder. With so many options out on the market it is only necessary to find out as much information about them as possible. FAKRO attic ladders are meant to make your life easier.
You want to make use of the space above your head. Attics are great for decluttering your home and putting away things that don’t need to be out on a daily basis. FAKRO attic ladders are rated as one of the best on the market and the easiest to install. With a dozen different models one is sure to fit in your home.
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