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Ladder Safety Tips

Ladders are essential when it comes to DIY projects, but they must be used properly. Follow these safety tips and keep yourself safe when working with ladders.

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Ladders are built from wood, aluminum or fiberglass.

A good wooden ladder costs approximately $50 and is heavier than an aluminum or fiberglass ladder. Wood doesn't conduct electricity when it's dry, but it can when wet. To help keep your ladder dry, paint it with a waterproof acrylic paint.

An aluminum ladder costs about $70. Aluminum ladders are light and easy to carry, but they tip easily and can conduct electricity.

Fiberglass ladders typically cost about $90. They offer the best of both worlds because they're light and they don't conduct electricity.

Be sure to follow the safety instructions on your ladder. Before using a ladder, check the safety sticker to determine the load limit, which includes both you and the materials you're carrying. The safety sticker will also list the maximum safe height. Most ladders, with the exception of short stepladders, are not designed to support someone's standing on top of them.