Installing a Folding Attic Ladder in the Garage

Do you have unused attic space?  What are you waiting for?

This is my garage ceiling.  There is a large attic space above it and I am going to install an attic ladder to gain access to it.

Just a couple minor contraints to consider…
1. Limit the total weight of items to be stored.
2. The items must be able to withstand extreme attic temperatures.

I have the makita version of a sawzall (I love makita products).  It was the perfect tool for cutting the hole in the thick drywall.  It was a tricky balancing act while walking around on the trusses.

Attics have excellent storage space!  After finishing the attic ladder, I added insulation, plywood flooring, and fluorescent lighting.  If your like most people and have extra stuff that needs storage space, then you should investigate your attic options.  The effort required to make the space useable is definitely worth it.

Now I’m one step closer to organizing my stuff and insulating my garage.

Comments

  1. September 30th, 2009 at 07:16 | #1

    Hi there,
    Nicely done. Great video too. Attic ladders are really a fantastic way to open up some extra storage in the house. The plywood is also very professional, made a real storage area in your attic. Adds value to your property too. And Makita rocks, I definitely agree with you on that one.

  2. February 9th, 2010 at 04:10 | #2

    Love the video, very well done! Nice ladder as well, most of the ones we use in the UK are of the sliding type, either in wood or aluminium. I notice that it looks like you used ply for flooring in the attic space, again another difference here in the UK is we tend to use flooring grade chipboard. Was there any particular reason you used ply? However, I would use ply myself as its superior to chipboard but in the UK ply is expensive compared to chipboard.

  3. bob
    August 16th, 2010 at 22:31 | #3

    Alan, that ladder looks very sturdy. Where did you get it?

  4. August 16th, 2010 at 22:35 | #4

    I got it at lowes. The current model from the manufacturer is even more sturdy. I think they had enough complaints about this model breaking at the hinge point. Mine is still fine though.

  5. Jason Reed
    October 30th, 2010 at 11:04 | #5

    I like your site and great creations.  One question I have is regarding the brand and model number of attic ladder you used or would suggest.  I grew up with my Dad having an attic ladder and I know I want to install one in the garage of my new home.  I’ve researched various brands such as Werner but it seems many manufacturers have good and bad ones alike.
     
    I know I want one that is aluminum for its lightweight and strength qualities, but do you have a brand/model you could recommend or pros and cons to consider when shopping?  I have seen some that seem high quality but then people unbox them and gripe about poor installation instructions or less than quality springs/linkages, etc.
     
    Any feedback you could provide would be appreciated as I know I’ll get one soon, just not sure which one.
     
    Thanks, Jason

  6. October 30th, 2010 at 12:48 | #6

    My attic ladder is an older werner model with thinner engineered sides. Some people have complained that its hinge points weaken and break over time. I haven’t had that problem yet. But, I think that is why the current version of the werner attic ladder I’ve seen at Lowes has been redesigned with a beefier traditional aluminum extrusion. In my area (Michigan) werner is the best attic ladder I’ve seen and their current model looks better than my version. I think the key to longevity is to pay attention to how you walk up and down the ladder. Step with even pressure. If you bound on each step then your weight (and the weight of what your carrying) is doubled, which will put a lot of stress on the ladders hinge points.

  7. Jason Reed
    January 3rd, 2011 at 19:12 | #7

    I like your site and great creations.  One question I have is regarding the brand and model number of attic ladder you used or would suggest.  I grew up with my Dad having an attic ladder and I know I want to install one in the garage of my new home.  I’ve researched various brands such as Werner but it seems many manufacturers have good and bad ones alike.
     
    I know I want one that is aluminum for its lightweight and strength qualities, but do you have a brand/model you could recommend or pros and cons to consider when shopping?  I have seen some that seem high quality but then people ubox them and gripe about poor installation instructions or less than quality springs/linkages, etc.
     
    Any feedback you could provide would be appreciated as I know I’ll get one soon, just not sure which one.
     
    Thanks, Jason

  8. January 3rd, 2011 at 20:54 | #8

    @Jason Reed
    Thanks Jason. My werner model is no longer available, but I’ve seen a newer aluminum version at lowes which seems nice. http://www.lowes.com/pd_304101-287-AL2210_?productId=3031830

    Reviews show hit or miss for many attic ladders, but I’m happy with my older style werner.

    I’d recommend picking it up locally which would make it easier to return if you have a problem.

  9. Richard
    February 8th, 2011 at 10:37 | #9

    Is there any alternative to hinging the trap door when fitting an aluminium 2/3 piece attic ladder? Just seems like so much work requires skill to get right.

  10. February 6th, 2012 at 01:48 | #10

    mmmm…?

  11. January 3rd, 2013 at 00:13 | #11

    I’m searching the web regarding attic ladders and I’m happy I found your very informative blog. Nice video! Thanks for sharing!

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