What is a Ladder Stabilizer?

C. Daw

A ladder stabilizer is a piece of metal, or aluminum, that has been molded to attach to the top of an extension or folding ladder, allowing a safer working environment. It works as a leveler at the top of the ladder to offer the user more stability, as well as allowing the ladder to span over a window or vent so that the required work can be done. They are many variations, styles, and sizes of ladder stabilizers, and some specific jobs, such as roofing, demand specific types. A stabilizer offers safety while on the ladder as well as versatility when it comes to completing a task that is high above the ground.

A ladder stabilizer can be used to reduce the risk of falls in the workplace.
A ladder stabilizer can be used to reduce the risk of falls in the workplace.

A common type of ladder stabilizer is a long piece of material that bends in at each corner, allowing the ladder to rest against the house while giving it two more points for security. The ends are covered with rubber or plastic boots that have grippers built into them, making it virtually impossible for the ladder to slip in any direction. The boots also prevent scratches on the surface of the siding by cushioning the weight of the ladder and the user. The ladder stabilizer distributes weight more evenly across a wider area, giving more stability and preventing any possibility of slippage when climbing up and down it.

A ladder.
A ladder.

A specialized ladder stabilizer is also commonly used when working on a roof, such as when installing asphalt shingles. This specific type of stabilizer is a little harder to use than the basic variety, but it serves the same function. This safety tool attaches to the end of the ladder as with the basic ones, but it secures itself down onto the top of the roof instead of onto the siding. This allows the user to climb up and down the ladder without any movement of the ladder, while adding extra support when exiting the ladder to climb out onto the roof.

The ladder stabilizer was designed to add safety and versatility when working on a project that is above ten feet (3.05 m). Various styles and applications can be purchased at most home improvement centers for a small investment. They have become very popular in the construction industries because they not only allow the worker to have stability in the general area of the ladder, but farther out in each direction as well. The wider the stabilizer, the wider the safe working area is.

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