Climb ladders with confidence

That season is upon us—the one that requires us to clean out the gutters before winter, that compels us to drag out decorations and climb onto our roofs and then to climb back up to take everything down. But do you ever stop to consider safety as you set up your ladder? You should.

How to know if your ladder is unsafe:   Your ladder should never, ever wiggle, jiggle, hop, or shudder. The only thing moving on your ladder should be YOU. Don’t use your ladder if any part is broken, bent, or missing. Throw it away.

The right ladder for the right job:   Ladders aren’t one size fits all. You wouldn’t change a lightbulb with an extension ladder, and you can’t reach your roof with a stepstool. If you have to stretch, reach, or contort your body to accomplish your objective while standing on a ladder, then you’re using the wrong ladder.

No balancing act:   Don’t vie for the grand prize on America’s Funniest Home Videos. Never use your ladder as a balance beam. Always climb up or down slowly and carefully, especially if your arms are full of tools, extension cords, Christmas lights, or decorations.

Never forget:   The American Ladder Institute reminds us: “Ladders are tools. Many of the basic safety rules that apply to most tools also apply to the safe use of a ladder.”

Need a ladder safety refresher course? Visit

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