7 Best RV Ladders of 2021
How many times have you needed a ladder while using your RV? We bet there are countless times, right? It’s because these nifty equipment are very useful to have.
There are many uses of RV ladders especially since RVs are considered as our home away from home. You use them to reach the top of your RV so you can clean your roof, check on the vents, or simply to enjoy the view from this vantage point. There’s no denying that RV ladders are a must-have in your rig whenever you travel.
That’s why in this article, we will tell you how you can purchase the best RV ladder for your camper and everything else that you need to know about RV ladders.
Reviews of the 7 Best RV Ladders of 2021
The Ohuhu Aluminum Telescopic Extension RV Ladder is an Amazon’s Choice product. It is highly recommended by thousands of buyers and it comes with an affordable price tag.
This telescoping ladder is made of premium aluminum alloy. This material is crucial in making this ladder lightweight so it’s easy to carry when you need to use it. It is durable and has a weight capacity of 330 lbs.
It is so easy to use with its one button retraction technology. You just press the button and the ladder will slide down without any hassle. It can be extended all the way to 12.5 feet so it’s very handy in helping you clean or repaint the roof, reach the top storage, and many more.
You feel secure while using this ladder because its non-slip end caps ensure that it stays in place and its steps are extra wide.
It is also safe to use because it comes with intelligent locking pins that keep each section of the ladder securely in place and they won’t slide down when you’re using the ladder. Aside from this, the Ohuhu Aluminum Telescopic Extension RV Ladder is certified to comply with EN131 and SGS European safety standards.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Material: Aluminum
- Item Weight: 11.5 Kilograms
- Load Capacity: 330 Pounds
- One button retraction
- Self-locking mechanism
- Non-slip end caps
The GP Logistics Compact RV Ladder is a great folding ladder that’s made from aluminum with steel parts to ensure its strength and durability. It has a duty rating of Type II which means it is medium duty and has a weight capacity of 225 lbs.
This RV folding ladder is safe to use since it has passed the ANSI and OSHA standards. You’ll also feel safe using it because it comes with rubberized anti-skid feet that keep it stable on the ground.
It is easy to use as it opens up smoothly. It is also light and easy to carry so you can use it anywhere in your RV. It folds into a compact size so you won’t have any trouble finding a suitable storage place for this ladder.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Weight: 22 pounds
- Material: Aluminum with steel parts
- rubberized anti-skid feet
- Type II 225 lb Commercial Rating
- Meets or Exceeds Applicable Type II ANSI and OSHA Standards
Surco is a trusted manufacturer of premium RV accessories. They have been in the business for decades.
The Surco Universal Motorhome Straight Ladder is constructed from heavy gauge 1″ aluminum making it light yet durable. It’ll make your access to your camper’s roof easy.
Being an exterior ladder, it comes with a bright dipped polished finish to complement the look of your rig. It comes with unique hinges to make it fit the contour of any vehicle.
This exterior ladder is safe to use. It has wide, non-slip steps and it comes with 4 stand offs that you can install anywhere for additional stability and support as you climb the steps.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Material: Aluminum
- Item Weight: 7 Pounds
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 38.5 x 14.5 x 6.25 inches
- Non-slip, wide steps
- 4 stand offs provided for additional support and stability
This Little Giant Flip-N-Lite 6 ft Ladder is a hit among RV owners. It is a bestseller and an Amazon’s Choice product. It is well made using high quality aluminum which is a good choice as it makes the product lightweight but sturdy at the same time. It has a maximum weight capacity of 300 lbs so it’s good for heavy duty use.
Being lightweight, it is easy to carry around as you use it in different portions of your RV. You’ll feel safe and comfortable using this ladder. It has a standing platform and extra wide rungs so your feet won’t feel tired trying to maintain your balance. This means you can stand on it for as long as you need to finish your task whether its cleaning your ceiling or repairing your roof.
It is also OSHA and ANSI certified and so that’s great value for your money as you’re sure about your safety while using this.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Material: Aluminum
- Item Weight: 6350 Grams
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 74.75 x 21.25 x 5.25 inches
- Extra-wide rungs
- Meets or exceeds all OSHA and ANSI standards and is Type IA rated to hold 300 lbs
The Wolfwise 12.5 ft Extension Ladder is a bestseller. It is an Amazon’s Choice product so you’re sure that it offers good value for your money.
It is made of aerospace engineered 6061 aluminum alloy with a Clean-Touch anodized finish that’s why it is sturdy. This one’s a heavy duty with a weight capacity of 330 lbs.
This extension ladder is easy to use with its one button retraction. Wolfwise’s smart-close system ensures your safety when retracting this ladder. Each of the steps will fall down smoothly into place. When fully extended, you’ll have a reach of 12.5 feet and once done, it retracts to a compact size. You can conveniently store this in your closet or under your bed. It is thoughtfully designed as it comes with an integrated carrying handle with a heavy duty closure strap so it’s easy to carry around.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Material: Aluminum
- Item Weight: 5.46 Pounds
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 34.6 x 18.5 x 1.9 inches
- smart close system
- one button retraction
- Integrated carrying handle with heavy-duty closure strap
The Stromberg Carlson LA 466 B Bunk Ladder is also highly recommended by its users. It has a maximum weight capacity of 250 lbs so it’s good for medium duty load.
It is a sturdy bunk ladder and not bulky at all. This will ensure that your little ones can reach the top bunk without any trouble. You can also use this for reaching the top of your overhead cabinets to access the items you’ve stored in there.
The Stromberg Carlson bunk ladder comes with rubber tread covers for comfort and stability when climbing. You have the option of using a small hook and extrusion to attach it at the side of the bed. Or you can also attach it to the bed rail using the larger hook that comes with it so there’s no drilling involved. You can trim these ladders to suit the height of your bunk bed.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Item Weight: 1 Pound
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 1 x 1 x 1 inch
- 250 lb maximum weight capacity
Last on our list but definitely not the least is the Telesteps Extension Ladder. This 14.5 ft telescopic extension ladder is said to be revolutionary. It is made from premium aluminum alloys that make this ladder sturdy and lightweight. It is rated Type IA with a weight capacity of 300 lbs.
It is easy to carry and use. It has a fully automatic telescoping operation. You can adjust its height one foot at a time until you get the right height. It’ll help you reach up to 18 feet high and when you’re done using it, it’s height can be retracted to merely 33 inches making it easy to store as well.
You’ll feel safe and secure using this OSHA certified and ANSI tested ladder. This one is for professional use. It comes with wide steps and molded serrated rungs so you can keep you balance and stability. It also has high quality non slip rubber bumpers and feet to help keep you steady.
Keys Specs and Features:
- Material: Aluminum
- Item Weight: 30.5 Pounds
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 20 x 4 x 36 inches
- Load Capacity: 300 Pounds
- Fully automatic telescoping operation
These are the 7 best RV ladders which are currently available in the market. Have you decided which one among them is the best RV ladder for your rig?
If you’re having a difficult time choosing the best RV ladder, we highly suggest you continue reading to find out more about RV ladders and everything you need to consider before buying an RV ladder.
What is an RV ladder?
Just like any other ladders, an RV ladder is an equipment used by RV owners to give them additional height to reach something inside or outside of their rig. It also gives them much needed support as they climb so that they will be safe and secure. With the help of the ladder, they are able to carry out their tasks and other activities.
You may have seen some RVs with a ladder attached at the backside of their vehicles. This used to be how manufacturers maximize the space, given that ladders do occupy so much space in a rig. However, there have been some accidents involving these attached ladders wherein they had broken off from the body of the RV. This led to bodily injuries of those using them at that time as they fell to the ground.
Because of those incidents, it has been more common for RV owners to just buy a separate ladder that they can use for different purposes. RV ladders have a lot of uses for cleaning, repair, maintenance, and other things. This is why it is important to get the best RV ladder that you can use anytime the need arises.
How does it work?
An RV ladder works just like any other ladder. The main difference is that you use it as a support to reach higher positions in your RV.
You can rely on an RV ladder to give you a strong foothold as you climb to reach a higher position. This will allow you to access areas in your rig which are out of your reach.
Manufacturers have also added certain features that separate RV ladders from ordinary ladders that you can find in the market. For example, there are RV ladders with a telescopic feature. This means that the ladder has concentric tubular sections that can slide into one another. This allows owners to adjust the size of the ladder according to their need. They can extend the length of the ladder if they need it to be longer or collapse it to a certain height.
There are RV ladders which are foldable to make it easier for owners to store them inside the rig. Or some have a collapsible feature which allows owners to assemble and disassemble the ladder before and after use. These variations are offered by manufacturers to respond to the problem of storage since ordinary RV ladders take up too much space within the rig.
Anther remarkable feature of RV ladders is its anti-skid property. This makes use of padded rubber technology. This is added at the feet of the ladder so that it won’t move or slide while in use. This enhances the safety and security of the users especially when they are using the ladders on uneven terrain or when the ground is wet and slippery. Anti-skid features are also placed on each step of the ladder for a more solid foothold no matter what kind of footwear you are using.
There are other features that enhance the function of RV ladders. You can read about them in the product description of the RV ladder that you’re interested in to find out how they work and how they can serve your needs.
RV Ladder Types
Chances are you’ve already seen ladders placed at the backside of RVs. This is common in older models of RVs but there are other types of RV ladders too. Here are the RV ladder types that you can find in the market today.
These are very popular among RV owners because this type of ladders are versatile. They can be used as a stairway ladder, step ladder, wall ladder or a temporary stool. If one is creative enough, these ladders can be used for scaffolding.
As such, multipurpose ladders can be used for different uses. You can adjust their height according to your need . You can lower them if you will use these ladders as a stool. You can extend their height so that they can be used as a stairway ladder.
With some adjustments, you will be able to use these ladders to be able to access different heights and do different things. That’s why they are very handy to have inside your rig.
RV Bunk Ladders
Bunk ladders are usually used for interior spaces. They are useful in connecting your bunk beds or helping you reach the top of the cupboard.
These ladders are light and portable. Even children can lift and move them around easily. They also usually come with brackets so that you can conveniently hang them when you use these ladders. The brackets also make it convenient for users to store them by just hanging them over a door or an unused portion of the wall.
RV Rack Ladders
An RV rack ladder can be attached at the back of your camper. These can be used for climbing to the top of your roof.
But RV rack ladders serve another purpose. You can use them in transporting and storing things that you’re bringing with you to your camping destination. They work like a bike rack. You can place your bikes over them as well as other items and you wouldn’t have to worry about them falling over while you’re on the road.
RV rack ladders are built to endure the weight of bikes and other bulky items. They’ve also been weatherproofed so that they can withstand the harsh weather conditions given that they’re usually placed outside the rig.
RV Step Ladders
RV step ladders are smaller ladders that can stand up on their own. Thus, there’s no need to lean them on the wall when you use them. Their 4 padded feet and built-in spreaders make their design stable so that users won’t tip over. You can use these step ladders even without someone assisting you to keep you steady.
They usually have a height of 1′ or 2′. These ladders can be used indoors and outdoors. You can use them to give you a step up with a certain degree of stability. These are perfect for reaching the top of your cabinet or setting up the awning outside.
However, some RV step ladders are bulky. They take up a larger space in your storage area and they are also heavier. So it’s best to look for step ladders that are foldable and lightweight so that they’re easier to store and easy to carry from one place to another.
Exterior Ladder For RV
Exterior RV ladders are those that are permanently fixed on the exterior of your rig. These are constructed to be heavy duty as they are used to climb to the roof of the camper. They are also weatherproof and resistant to rust so that they will be able to endure the harsh weather conditions.
However, exterior ladders are not flexible. You won’t be able to use them anywhere else in your RV since they are attached on the wall.
Telescopic Extension Ladder
Telescopic extension ladders are collapsible ladders. They usually reach 10′ to 15′ when fully extended and can be retracted to less than 3′. These ladders are easier to store since they don’t take up too much space.
Another advantage of telescopic extension ladder is that you can use them for different purposes and you can move them from one place to another.
However, telescopic extension ladders may not be as sturdy and secure as RV exterior ladders. It’s best to have a companion with you when you use this type of ladder to help keep you stable and safe.
What are the benefits of having an RV ladder?
RV ladders are very useful and it would be wise on your part to never leave without one. Here are some of the instances wherein an RV ladder would come in handy.
Useful for Cleaning
There are certain portions of your rig which are out of your reach such as the roof and ceiling. This makes cleaning those areas difficult. But with the help of an RV ladder, you will be able to access these areas when cleaning and you’ll be done with your task in no time.
Useful for Maintenance and Repair
Having an RV ladder will help you a lot in doing your maintenance and repairs. You can check on various portions of your rig which are above your eye level.
With the stability that RV ladders offer you, you can move about freely and go about with your parts check up. You can properly inspect the roof of your rig to check for any damages or cracking of the coating. You can check your antenna and solar panels with the help of a ladder.
Having an RV ladder gives you access to different spots within the camper. This way, you won’t miss a thing and you’ll be able to conduct repairs as needed.
Useful for Accessing Storage
Some storage areas are located in a high spot. This poses a problem for some RV owners who are not tall enough to reach them. But that’s not a problem when you have an RV ladder.
You will be able to reach the overhead cabinets and put your travel stuff there. When the time comes that you need to use those things, you can get what you need in there with ease.
If your roof has a rack for carrying your gears then you need an RV ladder to help you put your gears on your roof. A particular type of RV ladders, RV rack ladders, can be used to help you climb the roof and you can use them as a rack for your bikes and other travel essentials.
With the help of RV ladders, you will be able to maximize the storage capacity of your camper.
Useful in case of an Emergency
You can use your RV ladder to help you get out of your rig quickly especially when there’s an emergency such as a fire.
There are many other uses of RV ladders depending on the need. They are handy in many situations as you travel in your camper. That’s why it is a good idea to invest in the best RV ladder so that you have a reliable equipment with you that will give you the extra height that you need.
Things You Should Be Looking For In An RV Ladder
Now that we’ve established how useful RV ladders are, it’s time for you to get the best RV ladder in the market. But of course, there are certain considerations that you have to make when buying an RV ladder. Check our buyer’s guide below so that you won’t end up regretting your purchase.
As discussed earlier, there are different kinds of RV ladders. There’s the exterior ladder, telescopic extension ladder, bunk ladder, rack ladder, step ladder, and multipurpose ladder.
Do you want a fixed exterior ladder to help you in climbing the roof of your rig? Or do you just need a smaller ladder with a studier base so that you can reach the cupboards, cabinets, and awning?
You can now narrow down your choices to the specific ladder type that you need.
Height And Weight
You should consider the height of the RV ladder and its weight. This should be based on the purpose that the ladder will serve.
If you’re simply replacing an old ladder, you just measure its height and choose a new one with the same measurement.
If you’re buying a telescopic extension ladder, check its maximum height to make sure that it will help you reach the roof of your rig.
If you’re planning to buy a bunk ladder, check if its height will allow you to access the top bunk in your camper. You also need to factor in the angle of the ladder so that you can set it up properly.
But take note of the weight as well. Make sure that it is light enough so as not to cause any damages on the frame of your RV. You should also be able to move the ladder in different places in your rig so it’s best to choose a lightweight ladder.
The kind of material used to construct the ladder has a big impact on its functionality and durability. Aluminum is often used in making RV ladders because it is strong yet light. This is important in ensuring that the ladder is easy to move around and can fully support your weight when you use it.
Some RV ladders are built using heavier materials to provide users with stability and sturdiness. Albeit being bulkier, these ladders are usually built to last longer.
Make sure that the material used is strong because you need your ladder to be able to provide you solid support as you use it.
We’ve discussed some of the features to look for in an RV ladder earlier. These are the qualities that make a particular RV ladder stand out from the rest or make it better suited for the specific purpose that you want to use it for.
An example here is ladders that come with a telescopic property. It means you can adjust the height of the ladder according to your need. You can fully extend it to its maximum height if you need it to help you access the ceiling or roof. Or you can reduce it to a certain height that’s just enough for you to reach particular portions in your rig. Lastly, you can retract it to its smallest length so that it won’t take up too much space in your storage area.
Another important feature to look for is the ladder’s anti-skid properties. This will prevent the ladder from sliding. Some manufacturers also use anti-skid technology on each step of the ladder to ensure the safety of the users.
For exterior ladders, you would want to check features that make them better able to withstand harsh environmental factors. Look for RV ladders that are weatherproof and have anti-corrosion and rusting properties so that they’ll last longer.
Ladder Safety Standards
Safety is always our top priority. Make sure that the RV ladder that you’re buying complies with safety standards to prevent accidents, injuries, and harm.
Check the maximum weight capacity of the RV ladder. It should be able to accommodate your weight as well as the weight of the items that you will be carrying while using the ladder. These are the duty ratings of RV ladders:
- Type IAA / Extra Heavy Duty – 375 pounds
- Type IA / Extra Heavy Duty – 300 pounds
- Type I / Heavy Duty – 250 pounds
- Type II / Medium Duty – 225 pounds
- Type III / Light Duty – 200 pounds
If you’re buying an exterior ladder, consider getting a Type I ladder so that you can be assured that it won’t break easily.
You can also check if they have the certification from American National Standards Institute. This is the main agency that monitors the quality of design and construction of all types of ladders. If the ladder you’re buying has an ANSI certificate, you can be sure that it can provide you with the much needed support whenever you’re using your ladder.
It is also better if the RV ladder passed the Occupation Health and Safety Administration standards. You’re assured that the product’s spacing, weight, and safety features have met the strict requirements of the government agency.
The best RV ladder for your rig is one that is within your allotted budget. Factor in the features that you want your ladder to have then set a reasonable budget for a sturdy RV ladder.
RV ladders being sold in the market are available in different price points. We’re not saying that the most expensive ladder is the best ladder for you. Be practical about it but remember also that you need to invest in a good RV ladder because there are many times that you will use it.
These are the main considerations that you have to take into account when buying an RV ladder. This is how you can purchase the best RV ladder for you.
You should invest in a good quality RV ladder. Yes, don’t ever go on your camping trip without bringing a handy ladder with you. You never know when you’re going to need one. Rather, chances are you’re going to need one while you’re on your camping trip – to help you go up the roof, reach the stuff inside your overhead cabinet, set up your awning, and many other instances.
So, go ahead and invest in the best RV ladder that you can find in the market s that you’ll have a safe and hassle-free camping.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why are there ladders on RVs?
As discussed above, ladders are very useful in the day to day RV life. Older models even come with ladders attached at the backside of their travel trailers. But due to reports about these ladders breaking and causing accidents, attached exterior ladders are not usually offered in the market anymore.
RV owners can buy their own ladders that would suit their particular need such as for cleaning the roof, maintenance and repairs, accessing top storage spaces, and enjoying panoramic views from a high vantage point. They are also useful for emergencies. For these reasons and more, ladders are an essential equipment in every camper.
How do you setup and use your RV ladder?
It would depend on the type of ladder that you have.
There are some types of ladders that do not require any installation process. You can just use them like any other ladder by leaning them on the wall or a sturdy surface.
For those with telescoping ladders, you will need to adjust the height of the ladder according to your need.
For those using RV bunk ladders, there are hooks and brackets at the top of the ladder that you can use in installing them at the side of the bunk beds. They will keep the bunk ladder securely in place.
Exterior RV ladders need to be permanently attached at the side of your camper. These ladders usually come with bolts and screws that you need for installation. You attach them directly to the subframe or back of your rig.
Here are the basic steps in installing an exterior RV ladder.
- Choose the right location for your ladder.
- Drill two holes in the frame of the RV.
- Apply caulk or silicone on the underside of the mounting tabs of the ladder.
- Connect the ladder using metal screws on the mounting tabs.
- You can pull the ladder gently just to make sure that it is properly mounted on the RV frame.
Make sure you follow the instructions provided by the manufacturers to that you can install them properly to ensure your safety and security when using the ladder. The bolts and screws should be tightened securely. It is also recommended that you apply weatherproofing treatment on your ladder especially on the new bolts and screws. This will help you ensure that your ladder can withstand changing weather conditions and avoid moisture build up that can damage your ladder.
Whenever you use RV ladders other than exterior ladders, make sure that you place them securely on the surface. Make sure that they don’t move or slip so that you won’t fall or lose your balance when you use them.
Use the RV ladder support or have someone assist you to ensure that you’re steady and safe as you’re using the ladder.
How to clean and care for an RV ladder?
Cleaning RV ladders is a simple task. Since most ladders are made of aluminum, they are easy to clean. You just use a sponge soaked in water to remove any dirt on the surface. Or you can just use a hose to remove the dirt, dust, and debris.
When you’re done cleaning the surface, you wipe it dry before storing. This will ensure that there’s no water or moisture left on the ladder which could cause rusting and corrosion. But if it’s an exterior ladder, it will dry naturally with the help of the sun and air.
How to repair RV ladders?
In case your ladder gets stained with paint, use a paint remover to bring it back to its original look. If it gets damaged, assess the severity. If it’s not severe, you can repair it yourself. You can cut off the damaged portion and have it replaced.
But if the damage is terrible, you can bring it to a service center where they can put it back to its original state. Don’t attempt to do home repair because you might not have the right tools and building skills to repair it properly. This will only lead to accidents and injuries.
Or you can just buy a new and dependable ladder if the damage is already beyond repair. This will ensure your safety whenever you’re using your ladder.
How to remove an old RV ladder?
It depends on the type of ladder that you have.
There’s no need to remove anything when you’re using RV telescopic ladders and bunk ladders. You just need to dispose them properly or consider recycling them so that you can still use them for a different purpose this time around.
But if we’re taking about exterior RV ladders, then you have to remove the old ladder carefully before you can install a new one.
Exterior ladders are secured by bolts and screws at the subframe of your rig. So you have to find the correct fitting that will loosen those screws and bolts so that you can remove them properly without damaging your rig’s frame.
While doing so, make sure you have someone or something supporting the weight of your exterior ladder so that it won’t fall off suddenly and cause you pain and injury. When the bolts and screws are loosened, remove the ladder and move it to a safe location or put it directly to the trash bin.
How much weight can an RV ladder hold?
It depends on the RV ladder that we’re talking about. To be sure, read the manual or product description for the ladder’s weight capacity. Check the duty ratings (Type IAA / Extra Heavy Duty can hold 375 pounds, Type IA / Extra Heavy Duty can hold 300 pounds, 250 pounds for Type I / Heavy Duty, 225 pounds for Type II / Medium Duty, and 200 pounds for Type III / Light Duty.
Take note that the weight capacity includes your weight and the weight of the items that you’re carrying while using the ladder. Stay within the recommended weight limit to avoid any accidents and injuries.