Last updated on January 31st, 2022
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If you need a pair of ladders that you can store in the smallest of spaces and still reach new heights, a good set of telescopic ladders is the way to go, best of all, some even turn into A-frame step ladders
What do you do if you need a long ladder to get up into your loft or to wash your upstairs windows outside but you only have a small shed to store it in? The answer is right here in this review of the Best Telescopic Ladders. Telescopic ladders extend up to about 5m (15 feet) or so but fold down to around 1+ m (3+ feet). You can put them easily into your car to lend to a friend or even store them under the stairs. They are even perfect for professional use because they are so versatile.
This review of the best telescopic ladders starts with a Buyer’s Guide full of information about the features that are useful or necessary to have. We emphasise the need to look for ladders with British Safety Standards certification to ensure that they’ve been tested thoroughly. We follow that with individual reviews of the best ladders that include the pluses and minuses of each. From there, we’ve selected our best pick and the runner up. The Best Pick telescopic ladder is the Finether 3.8m Aluminium Telescopic Ladder. With its strength and many safety features, this ladder is suitable for a domestic or commercial environment.
From a full extension of 3.8m (12.5 feet), this ladder telescopes down to an impressive 0.9m (just under 3 feet). You can store it in a garden storage box or a tote box in your storage shed. Collapsing a telescopic ladder is always a stressful activity with fingers getting in the way and rungs banging together. This Finether model has protection spacers between the rungs that reduce the friction when collapsing the ladder and stop them from bumping into each other. In addition, your fingers have to be on either side of the rung to use the two lock/unlock couplings, so they’re out of the way and won’t be pinched.
The Finether 3.8m Aluminium Telescopic Ladder is our Best Pick of telescopic ladders for its light weight and its safety features.
Telescopic Ladder Buyer’s Guide
What to take into consideration when choosing a telescopic ladder
A word of warning, we noticed that pretty much all telescopic ladders when fully extended are not as solid and stable as a standard pair of ladders. They all seem to bend a little and bow in the middle when fully extended, this can be a little worrying at first but this is how they are designed to be and as long as you purchase a solid pair that conform to EN-131 and CE standards, you shouldn’t have any problems.
Telescopic ladders have become very popular in recent years, mainly due to their compact, lightweight innovative design and versatility. However, with so many models available, it can be hard to work out which models are not only safe to use, but also which ones have been manufactured to the highest standards. There are also different features telescopic ladders have that the cheaper models may lack, for example, the ability to fold into an A-Frame to form step ladders or be able to be extended step by step and not used fully extended. Some models have to be fully extended to lock in place so it’s important to take this into consideration.
During our research, we found that there are lots of cheap imports on the market, some even look like they might not even confirm to EN-131 and CE standards as they had no mark on the ladders, which is not only illegal, it could also mean you’re not insured should you have an accident and need to claim on your home or business insurance. They can also be extremely dangerous and you can be risking serious injury just by using them. It’s simply not worth the risk.
With this in mind, below we go over what to look for to ensure you buy one of the best telescopic ladders and which is the right model for you, for example, there is no point in paying extra for a pair that double as a step ladder if you’re not going to use this feature.
Our Runner-Up Model
After work is complete, this telescopic ladder collapses down to 88cm for easy storage. It's not quite in the same league as our Best Pick by Worhan but it's a good choice for those looking for a cheaper but safe alternative, perhaps home users. Overall a great set of ladders. Just watch your fingers as you close the ladder down as care must be taken.
Ensure the ladder conforms to European and UK standards
All ladders sold in the UK should be manufactured to specified standards that ensure they are safe to use and have passed certain safety standards. There are actually three separate standards of classification. The three classifications are Class 1, Class EN131 and Class III.
Class 1 is designed for industrial use, Class EN131 is suitable for commercial light trade work and heavy-duty DIY use and Class 3 is designed for domestic tasks.
We recommend buying ladders that are at least Class EN131 rated because they are the significantly safer option and offer the quality you can appreciate whilst still offering the best value for money. The other reason is insurance companies will insist you use at least ‘EN131 rated ladders’ because they will not pay out should you have an accident on ladders that are not up to standard. Colour identification is often used on the rubber feet of ladders and steps and/or attached user instructions and warning labels. As a general rule, always look out for an EN131 rating.
Step by step extension
All good telescopic ladders will extend ‘step by step’, which means you can set the ladders to your desired height and this is incredibly useful in confined spaces where a fully extended set of ladders would simply not fit. Each rung will lock separately, we only recommend ladders with this feature. It’s important to realise that some ‘cheaper models’ need to be fully extended before they lock into place. We would strongly advise against ladders that cannot be used at different heights.
Finger pinch protection
Some models feature ‘finger pinch protection’ and this is a nice feature to have. It simply prevents you from trapping your fingers when you retract the ladder, and as you will find, they can retract quickly. A simple feature, but not found on all models.
Models that convert into step ladders
Some models ‘fold in half’ and can be converted into stepladders. Most models that have this feature also have the ability to extend each side independently and this means they can be used on uneven surfaces and on stairs. A great feature for any tradesman or home user.
Excellent for home use, it can be used at different heights and is affordable
Look for a ladder with a stabiliser included
The stabiliser is a simple aluminium bar that fits the bottom of the ladder and provides more stability. Not all ladders include the stability bar but I think it’s essential, especially for longer ladders. Cheaper ladders often don’t have a stabiliser, simply to save on cost.
Look for gripped rubber feet
Again this is a safety feature that helps prevent the ladder from slipping on a range of surfaces. It also helps prevent marking the floor, it may surprise you, but not all ladders have this simple feature, which is essential from a safety point of view at the very least.
Build quality that includes the mainframe as well as the locking components and plastic casings
Some ladders are made from low-quality materials. Usually, low-quality models are easy to spot by their low prices. If you see a ladder that is significantly cheaper than other similar models, purchase with caution because there is usually a reason they’re so cheap. The reason is usually because they are made from poor quality materials that are often not up to standard.
Top 6 Telescopic Ladder Reviews
1. Finether 3.8m Aluminium Telescopic Ladder
The Finether 3.8M Aluminium Telescopic/Telescoping Loft Extension Ladder is 100% suitable for jobs around the home and workplace. For example, this telescopic ladder has a multi-function design that allows it to work as a straight ladder or as an A-frame ladder.
There are multiple height settings, allowing 1ft extension or retraction of rungs up to 3.8m or 0.86m, respectively. This makes it ideal for jobs of every size and scope, whether it’s reaching a very high spot to clean or paint or trying to fit into a more confined space where a conventional ladder wouldn’t fit. So be it inside a house, garage, loft, wall, fence, or anywhere else, this telescopic ladder is the real deal.
This ladder is built to the highest safety standards, with EN-131 certification approving of its safety in major applications. It can be used in commercial settings too and it’s easy to transport and store thanks to its lightweight and compact design. The ladder collapses down to just 0.86m and with its grip handle, you can easily carry it with one hand.
Safety is really at the core of this ladder’s design. For instance, there are clear indicators on the locking system that makes it easy to comprehend how to safely extend, retract and lock the telescopic ladder during use. Moreover, the ladder has a non-slip base for increased overall safety. The load limit is also a generous 150kgs.
- The frame is made from aluminium alloy for long-lasting durability plus it is sturdy and slip-resistant for enhanced safety.
- Extension and retraction design allows you to adjust the rungs to reach and retract to any desired height with minimal effort.
- Features protection spaces between the rungs to avoid bumping and friction during retraction.
- Each rung has double couplings that ensure a good hold of the telescopic ladder without pinching.
- Bottom caps on feet ensure stability and prevents tipping over.
- The compact and lightweight size allows easy transportation and storage.
- An eco-friendly telescopic ladder with EN-131 certification.
This unique model functions both as a straight telescopic ladder and an A-frame step ladder, making it perfect for a wide range of home and commercial projects, such as home renovations, window cleaning, painting and interior/exterior decoration.
The ladder is easy to extend and retract, whilst being collapsible to a compact 86cm structure for easy transportation and storage. It is the right match for DIY projects involving a lot of travelling. The lightweight aluminium alloy construction gives it easy portability, rust protection and durability.
It has many safety elements that we really like, including safety caps on feet to prevent slipping during use, double coupling at every rung to minimise the chance of fingers getting caught in the sliding mechanism and protection spacers that reduce friction when collapsing the ladder. Furthermore, the ladder meets EN-131 safety standards.
Overall, the Finether 3.8M Aluminium Telescopic/Telescoping Loft Extension Ladder has some great features that appeal to anyone looking for a ladder that they can use for DIY and commercial jobs. After much debate, we decided that this model should be the winner of our ‘Best Pick’.
2. Autobaba 5m A-Frame Telescopic Folding Ladder
Autobaba is not a famous brand in the telescopic ladder market, however, the 5M Portable A-Frame Ladder Multi-Purpose Aluminium Telescopic Folding Ladder is one amazing product they have. Made from aluminium, this ladder is light and easy to use, making it suitable for indoor and outdoor jobs. This is certainly one of the longest extendable ladders with 16 steps equivalent to 5m at full length.
It compacts down to 88cm in order to take very little space in the garden storage box, unlike traditional ladders that are hard to hide in smaller spaces. Even more, the ladder has Velcro straps designed to lock it when fully retracted. To start using the ladder, all you need to do is undo the convenient straps and extend it accordingly.
This ladder has been designed with safety in mind and you can see this from the solid rubber feet that won’t slip, even on wet surfaces, and a stabiliser bar that ensures stability in every position. Any adult can use this ladder because it has a great weight limit of 150kgs. The ladder itself weighs 18.2kg and whilst this may be too much to carry, it can be easily transported in the back of a van. So whether you want to use it at home or from site to site, this 5m ladder is worth investing in.
- Lightweight aluminium construction makes it easy to use and store. Velcro storage straps included.
- Extendable up to 5m and compacts down to 0.88m for easy storage.
- Weight limit of 150kgs.
- Comes with safety certification featuring heavy-duty latches and rubber-tipped feet.
- Easy to set up; simply undo the Velcro straps and extend to your needs.
The Autobaba 5M Portable A-Frame Ladder Multi-Purpose Aluminium Telescopic Folding Ladder offers a fantastic maximum height, thus enabling you to perform a range of tasks. You can easily wash the windows, clean the gutter, paint a wall and redecorate. This ladder has been made even better with an excellent load capacity of 150kgs.
The aluminium frame is strong yet lightweight for easy handling, whilst a stabiliser, non-slip angled foot, non-slip bottom cap and slip-resistant rung ensure maximum safety during use. In addition, this multi-purpose ladder can be used when straight or in a folded A-frame position. The ladder is easy to use and suits the needs of many. If you are looking for a slightly longer telescopic handle, you may want to consider this Autobaba model.
3. WolfWise 4.7M Telescoping Ladder
The WolfWise 4.7M Telescoping Ladder is a handy ladder that telescopes out from 1m (3.25 feet) when fully reduced to a lengthy 4.7 m (15.5 feet) when fully extended. You can unlock each section in one-foot increments to fully tailor the height of this telescoping ladder to what you want, whether you’re cleaning on top of the doors or hanging the Christmas lights from the eaves.
The frame of the WolfWise 4.7M ladder is made of an aluminium alloy that is rust and corrosion-resistant. This not only adds to its durability but also makes it difficult to bend and deform the rungs and the side frame. The ladder supports up to 150kg (330 pounds) when it’s extended, so a fully grown adult should feel secure when using it.
The 15 rungs each have a lock/unlock mechanism and you can unlock them from the top down and pull them up to extend the ladder. Rungs 2 (near the top) and 14 (near the bottom) have an extra locking bottom for added security and stability. The bottom of each of the two legs of the WolfWise 4.7M telescopic ladder has an end cap to that holds the ladder in place no matter what surface you have placed it on.
- Retracts from 4.7m (15.5 feet) to just over 1m (37.4 inches) for easy storage and portability.
- Has 15 steps, each with lock/unlock buttons for individual safety.
- Each section opens and closes separately in 0.3m (1 foot) increments so you can have the ladder exactly as long as you wish.
- End caps are non-slip to hold the ladder in place whilst you are up it working.
- The aluminium alloy construction resists corrosion for added durability.
- Supports up to 150kg (330 pounds).
- Weighs 14.4kg (32 pounds) so you can carry it by yourself.
- No indication if it’s compliant with British Safety Standards (EN 131).
- No soft or slow closing feature so it closes quickly; be careful when you’re shutting it up at the lower rungs.
- When opened to full extension, the ladder bends and flexes but this is common with telescopic ladders.
- Doesn’t fold into an A-frame for a stepladder like some models can.
The WolfWise 4.7M Telescoping Ladder is a basic telescoping ladder that folds down into an impressive 1m length. It’s aluminium alloy construction, which is corrosion-resistant, is relatively light at 14.4kg. You’ll be able to carry this by yourself, especially if you put something under the lowest rung to balance it on. Each of its 15 steps has their own unlock/lock button and can be opened separately to form a ladder of any length from 1m to 4.7m in 0.3m increments.
This telescoping ladder, according to online reviewers, however, lacks a soft or slow closing function. This is not so important when you’re closing up the upper rungs but when you get to the lower rungs, they close quickly and can easily trap your fingers painfully between them so care needs to be taken. In addition, when fully extended to 4.5m, some reviewers think that the ladder flexes and feels flimsy and they’re not comfortable climbing it, but this is fairly common with telescopic ladder designs.
In discussions about whether the WolfWise 4.7M Telescoping Ladder has a British Safety Standards certification – the EN 31 – no owner found this certification printed on the ladder itself or the literature that came with it. Some websites advertising the product do mention it, but there’s nothing official online from the manufacturer.
The WolfWise 4.7M Telescoping Ladder is a useful ladder if you don’t want to reach to very high places.
4. Worham 5.6m Double Telescopic Folding Ladder
The WORHAN 5.6m telescopic folding ladders can be set to many different configurations. It has been constructed to the highest standards using anodised aluminium with new technologies and are made strictly to EN131 safety standards, making them perfect form home and business or trade use.
The ability to fold in half to form step ladders, with the added flexibility to shorten and extend each end individually, means it is ideal for working on stairs and uneven surfaces where more conventional ladders would not be suitable.
It fully extends to a very impressive 5.6 meters (18.5ft) and when converted into step ladders, is a very impressive 270cm (8′ 10”).
At 20kg, they are very lightweight, this combined with its impressive folded downsize of 95x49x20cm, means it’s very easy to transport in the boot of a car, as well as being easy to store in confined spaces.
Other important features include the rung by rung extension with its improved safety locking mechanism. Simply open to the height required, which gives greater manoeuvrability, especially in smaller spaces. It also comes with an added stabiliser for further support to give the ladder more stability and support. Finally, the large rubber grip pads, ensure a solid grip on all working surfaces.
- Manufactured from anodised aluminium with new technologies. A strong and robust construction
- Can be used at multiple heights up to 5.6 meters (18.5ft).
- Folds down to a compact 95x49x20cm for easy transportation and storage.
- Can be extended rung by rung with a safety locking mechanism and can be set up in many configurations, as well as converted into a stepladder.
- Lightweight at only 20kg (44lbs).
- Strictly made to EN131 safety standard.
- Has a 150kg weight capacity.
- Comes with 12 months warranty.
We could not really fault these Telescopic ladders by WORHAM, they are clearly constructed to the highest quality and it extends smoothly and is very versatile.
We were very impressed with how they can be converted into a stepladder so easily and its ability to extend each side individually. This is great for anyone working on stairs or areas where the ground is not level. It’s also one of the tallest telescopic ladders we have seen and could easily reach the roof of most homes for maintenance jobs.
Overall, a good sturdy ladder that would have been our ‘Best Pick’ if it was not for its higher price tag. It also confirms to the all important EN-131 safety standards that means it suitable for commercial and trade use as well as home use.
5. Todeco 3.8m Telescopic Ladder
The Todeco Telescopic Ladders are a high-quality set of ladders ideal for home use. At only 11.5kg, they are extremely lightweight and when folded down they stand at only 80cm tall. Their compact design means they are easy to store and transport in the boot of your car.
When fully unfolded to their longest length, they are 3.8 meters (12.5ft) tall making them the ideal tool for most jobs around the home or workplace.
They are manufactured from double layers of high-quality aluminium WCS that conforms to the EN-131 and CE standards, so you can be sure they meet all safety standards.
To make carrying them around even easier and for added protection they come with a carry bag.
To help prevent you from slipping off the steps whilst using the ladder, the rungs have been profiled to squares and have a non-slip system on them to ensure they have the most grip possible.
To ensure the ladders do not close when in use, they incorporate a security lock system and a rolling bearing system so you can extend the ladder rung by rung. This means you can use the ladder at a height that best suits the job in hand, making them very flexible.
- Manufactured from high-quality aluminium.
- Folds down to a compact 80cm tall making them easy to store and transport.
- Can be extended rung by rung and used at any height up to 3.8 meters (12.5ft).
- Lightweight at only 11.5kg.
- Conforms to the EN-131 and CE standards.
- Includes balance bar that offers extra support at the base of the ladder when in use.
- Includes carry bag and 1 year warranty.
These telescopic ladders are great for anyone who needs a set of ladders for around the home and even for light, commercial or heavy-duty DIY work. They are not up to standard for industrial use because you would need ladders rated as ‘Class 1’.
Overall, they are excellent quality and offer excellent value for money and the included carry bag is a nice little extra to have. I think it’s worth mentioning that these ladders are also one of the ‘Best Selling’ telescopic ladders on Amazon.co.uk with almost 2000 reviews.
It does extend very easily and smoothly, just watch your fingers when you collapse it back down, some models do have features to protect your fingers but at an extra cost (our Best Pick has this feature) and as long as you take care when collapsing it down, you should be fine.
6. Charles Bentley 3.8M Telescopic Extendable Extension Ladder with Soft Close Anti Pinch
The Charles Bentley Telescopic Extendable Extension Ladder is described as a lightweight ladder and it’s certainly one of the lightest in our best telescoping ladder review. It weighs in at 11kg (24 pounds) so it’s not too heavy to carry between the places you need to use it. It’s ideal for an attic ladder and for other uses around the home.
A welcome safety feature is an indicator on each rung that shows that it’s fully locked into place. You won’t have to worry about stepping on the rung and having it slip down; just make sure to check them all first. The ladder opens up from its smallest state at almost 1m (3 feet) to its full extension at 3.8m (12.5 feet), rung by rung, so you can set it to whatever length you need for your task. If you don’t want to extend the ladder the whole way, then the unused rungs will collect at the bottom and form a fairly deep step for you to stand on.
An adult 150kg (330 pounds) or less will be safe and comfortable using the Charles Bentley Telescopic Extendable Extension Ladder. The comfort is continued in the way that the ladder closes. It has a soft close anti-pinch mechanism that lets you close each rung slowly and carefully so your fingers don’t get pinched.
The Charles Bentley Telescopic Ladder conforms to several British Safety Standards so you know that it has been tested to a high standard. The two-year manufacturer’s warranty ensures that should you need help or spare parts, they’re available. And if you think that you’ll be carrying this ladder around quite a bit, consider purchasing the optional carry bag.
- Opens to 3.8m (12.5 feet) which is a standard length.
- Closes to 87cm (2.8 feet) tall so that it fits in the smallest of spaces.
- Indicators show that the rungs are safely locked for your added safety.
- Extends easily rung by rung to the required height.
- Soft-close feature so you don’t pinch your fingers when closing it.
- Aluminium frame with heavy-duty PVC sides for sturdiness.
- Weighs 11kg (24 pounds) so most people can carry it safely.
- Maximum user weight is 150kg so most adults will be able to use it.
- Conforms to several British Safety Standards, including EN131, after thorough testing.
- Two-year manufacturer’s warranty so you don’t have to worry about finding replacement parts if needed.
- Carry bag can be purchased separately for more comfortable portability.
- Doesn’t fold into a step ladder.
- Rungs have come off after minimal usage and have failed to lock.
- The closing mechanism isn’t very soft closing; still get fingers pinched between the rungs.
- Customer service is not very responsive to customer needs when things break or need replacing.
The Charles Bentley Telescopic Extendable Extension Ladder is a lightweight and solid telescoping ladder that will suit projects in your home for which you need a bit of height. It opens to a maximum of 3.8m (12.5 feet) which is enough height to get into your attic or to remove leaves from the eaves and closes to less than 1m (3 feet) and this is small enough to put in the bottom of the hall cupboard.
An indicator on each rung is a safety feature lets you know that it’s locked into place so you don’t have any surprises when you step on it. However, some online reviewers state that the rungs of their Charles Bentley Telescopic ladders have failed to lock and have even come off after relatively minimal usage. So take care to ensure that all the rungs are safely in position before you climb the ladder.
The closing mechanism of most telescopic ladders seems to generate conversation in reviews. Even though this ladder has a soft closing, anti-pinch mechanism, some reviewers have still pinched their fingers when the rungs have closed up faster and harder than they expected. Our best advice is to keep your fingers out of the way, regardless of the closing mechanism that the ladder has.
The Charles Bentley Telescopic Extendable Extension Ladder is a good ladder for use in the home.
A lack of storage space is no longer a reason for not having your own ladder and for always borrowing your neighbour’s one. With the ladders in this Best telescopic ladder review, you don’t have to find a 2m (or more) long storage space to keep the ladder in; a space 1m will do. And as some of the telescopic ladders here fold out into a stepladder, you’ll have just the right ladder for your project whenever and wherever you need it.
Many of these telescopic ladders have the same features, differing mainly in length and in safety features – and budget of course. Once you’ve decided what you are going to use the ladder for, check the features of our selections to see which one is the best choice for you.
Our Best Pick is the Finether 3.8m Aluminium Telescopic Ladder. It’s compact and lightweight and has many safety features.
Having your own ladder is almost a right of passage in the DIY world. Welcome to the club.
Last update on 2022-03-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API