Roof ladder - what's the ideal length? And is two piece a no-no?

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Krome10

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Hi

I need to get a roof ladder and I've not had one before so just wanted to check...

1. What's the ideal length? Is it best if the ladder stops just short of the last tile / before the gutter. Is having the ladder extend belong the gutter a bad thing (obviously not to use! ...just it being there)?

2. I've read in places that a roof ladder should always be a single piece ladder and never an extendable. But then I've seen extendable versions available and in use. And in my case I have different parts of the house with different length roofs, so an extendable would be handy in as much as it could be adjusted and used for all of them. But is it a no-no?

Many thanks
 

Sandyn

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I got ridge hooks to convert one of my ladders to a roof ladder. It has wheels and works OK. The wheels are small, so can be difficult to get it over slates at times. The ladder should be long enough so you can climb on to it from the ladder on the ground. I wouldn't ever have a roof ladder overhanging the gutter because of the possibility of accidently going on the the unsupported part and it dislodging at the top. I think a two stage roof ladder would be useful. You can adjust it to the length of the roof.
When I use a roof ladder, I normally pack a piece of foam about 2" thick under the bottom end to prevent point loading on a slate and either snapping it or slackening it.
 

hunter27

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We had 2 piece alloy cat ladders issued at work for carrying on the vans, a lot of roofs are longer than you think and some beyond what you could carry in one piece on a van roof. The access ladder should go above the gutter level by I think it was at least 1 Metre to act as a hand hold for climbing onto the cat ladder and I always used to try to get the cat ladder to overhang the gutter and tie it directly to one of the stiles on the access ladder making it all a lot steadier.
 

Bingy man

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Have a look at the stand off bracket used to keep the ladder off the guttering and tiles ( a definite no no ) as others have advised a cat ladder to access the roof will also be safer but these can be hired . It’s also worth investing in an anchor bolt to secure ladder at the top ( again safety 1st ) ladder should extend a meter above the eve’s of the roof so you can step off the ladder and onto the cat ladder . The bottom of the ladder should be if my memory serves me correctly set at 1 in 3 - 1 foot out from base of building for every 3 feet of vertical height. Most quality ladders have an arrow on the stile - this should be perpendicular to the building if you have set it correctly. A base board ( more safety 1st ) to secure the ladder at its base . A 2nd person to assist you and get help if god forbid you get into trouble-the height of your house and the correct set up will dictate what length and type of ladder you will need -finally and not to offend you in any way but if you don’t feel confident in working at heights then don’t do it -stay safe 😊😊
 

Krome10

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Many thanks for all the replies. Some really useful tips in there. My highest roof is around 4.5m / 15 foot at the gutter line. The actual roof I have to do work on soon is much lower luckily. A good one to cut my teeth on - although not literally I hope!!

I enjoy working off ladders, just haven't used a roof ladder before.

The bottom of the ladder should be if my memory serves me correctly set at 1 in 3 - 1 foot out from base of building for every 3 feet of vertical height.

I've been reading up on the subject today and I think it is 4 to 1, not 3 to 1.

I have another question but a bit off topic so will start a new thread for that if that's ok.

Thanks again
 

Bingy man

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Many thanks for all the replies. Some really useful tips in there. My highest roof is around 4.5m / 15 foot at the gutter line. The actual roof I have to do work on soon is much lower luckily. A good one to cut my teeth on - although not literally I hope!!

I enjoy working off ladders, just haven't used a roof ladder before.



I've been reading up on the subject today and I think it is 4 to 1, not 3 to 1.

I have another question but a bit off topic so will start a new thread for that if that's ok.

Thanks again
Yeh been a long time since I did the training for roof work - the best method is a arrow on one of the stiles - Just stay safe , don’t rush -always be aware of when you go from a double step to a single step where your ladder overlaps on a double or triple extension.
 
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