Fire Safety Ladders

Fire safety ladders could save you and your child's life and may be the only option to escape in the unfortunate event that a fire starts in your home.  If you or your children are trapped the only safe option may be to exit from a window located on the second or third story. 

A house fire is not something most people plan for or let alone think about but every year in North America there are hundreds of thousands of house fires that lead to thousands of casualties.  As part of creating a "baby safe" home it's important to educate yourself and your children on fire safety and a ladder is an excellent part of that overall safety plan. 

It's common for a fire to start during the night when everyone is sleeping and the difference between surviving and being injured or worse is a matter of seconds.  The National Fire Protection Association recommends a ladder for each occupied room that is above the main level of your home.  

We'll go over the variances you'll find in escape ladders so you can make sure to find one that works with the unique layout of your home.  We will also provide a list of what we feel are the best fire escape ladders based on safety, usability and customer feedback. 

Fire Safety Ladder Features

If your ladder doesn't work as intended when you need it the most the consequences could be devastating.  A safety ladder should be easy to use and accessible for parents and children.  In order to ensure that your ladder works with your home there are a few things you need to consider.

Length of the Ladder

The most common escape ladder is designed for two story homes where bedrooms are usually located.  They will be described as "two-story" ladders and range in length from 13 - 15 feet and for three story home there are ladders that extend up to 25 feet. 

It's important that you measure the height required in order to reach from the window to the ground safely before purchasing and after during a practice exercise that we'll explain below. 

Steps or Rungs

Ladder Steps with Standoff

The steps or rungs should be made of a quality metal materials that will hold a substantial amount of weight.  The industry standard is 750 lbs on a single rung or 1000 lbs distributed on the entire ladder.  An anti-slip surface is also a great addition and will allow for easy use of the ladder and may prevent injury. 

The steps should hang in a manner that keeps the main stepping area away from the house to allow your foot to overhang slightly.  Ladder "standoffs" are used for this purpose and are engineered into the design of the step to minimize the amount of parts and complexity.  

Window Compatibility

Although most of the top rated fire safety ladders you will find online are designed to fit the average window it's something you should test out.  If you suspect that your window sill is thicker than a normal window or unique in any other way be sure to test that it fits before relying on as a safety device. 

Is the Ladder Reusable?

Some of the best fire escape ladders are designed for one-time use only and will need to be discarded after using otherwise they could cause injury or death.  If you are purchasing a ladder for the first time you should have a second ladder to practice using it both for yourself and your children. 

Recommended Fire Safety Ladders

After you have decided to increase the safety of your family it's important to choose a ladder that can be relied on in the event of an emergency.  There are numerous products on the market and we'll give you what we feel are the best options based on safety, quality and reliability. 

1.  X-IT Fire Escape Ladder

The X-IT 2 story ladder is available in a variety of lengths from 13 - 53 feet and includes a handy storage bag for storing neatly under the bed or closet. 

This ladder will fit any size window and wall thickness and has been tested and recommended by safety experts.  It is light and compact while being easy to use and reliable. 

2.  Kidde KL-2S Fire Escape Ladder

The Kidde KL-2S 13 foot ladder makes our list because it is easy to use, requires no tools and is very reliable.  It is rated up to 1,000 pounds and is backed by a 5-year limited warranty so you can be sure that it will work when you need it. 

It will work on most standard windows up to a maximum of 11 inches thick. This is a single-use ladder and should not be re-used. 

kidde kl-2s fire escape ladder

3.  First Alert EL52-2 Escape Ladder

The First Alert El52-2 escape ladder is designed for two-story homes and available in a 14 foot length.  This ladder is easy, compact and ready to use in an emergency. 

The strong steel construction is rated up to 1,125 pounds and features DuPont Cordura nylon strapping for added strength.  It will fit window sills with a thickness of 6 - 10 inches. 

Tips for Using Fire Safety Ladders

There are few important things you should go over for both yourself and your loved ones so you can be sure fire safety ladders can be an option in an emergency. 

  • Always test the ladder out for compatibility with the windows in your home
  • A practice drill or exercise will ensure that everyone in your home knows how to use the ladder during a fire
  • A ladder should be placed in every second story room

Fire safety ladders are an affordable and easy way to provide a safe escape route for your family during a fire.  With a little preparation you can be sure that everyone in your house can get out safety in the unfortunate event that there is a fire in your home. 

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