How to Replace Attic Ladder? DIY Tutorial Guide & Tips for Beginners

When you are using your attic for storage purposes, there comes a point when you get a realization that now your attic stair should be replaced. Learn how to do it on your own with this simple and easy-to-follow tutorial.

Right through this guide, we will be explaining to you all those major details which are required to be known for replacing the attic ladder successfully. The entire scenario to get an idea about how to purchase a brand new ladder and how you can install the ladder components yourself can potentially be saving so much of your money.

Although replacing or installing an attic ladder is not a hard task at all. But still, if you are not confident in your sawing, or squaring and aligning skills, consider hiring a reliable professional expert for this task.

Source: ahs

Major Material Required

For replacing an attic ladder, you need to first of all measure the existing attic ladder to figure out the size for buying a new one. You have to measure the rough opening along with its distance from the ceiling to the floor. Below are some of the major supplies which you do need to collect:

  • Carpenter square
  • Drill bits, according to the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Hammer
  • Hacksaw (for metal steps)/Wood saw
  • Pencil
  • Stepladder
  • Tape measure
  • Wrench based on manufacturer’s instructions
  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • Deck screws based on manufacturer’s instructions
  • Support boards based on manufacturer’s instructions
  • Shims

Do you know about How to Repair an Attic Ladder?

Step by Step Guide to Replace Attic Ladder DIY Tutorial

  1. First of all, you need to pray to lose the whole trim which is around the ladder main hole opening using a pry bar. Remove off the finishing nails and let the trim be set aside for re-use purposes.
  2. Now you have to extend your attic ladder folding until it does not touch the floor. Attach almost 1-by-4-inch strips alongside the front as well as backsides of the opening by using some construction screws. One-half of every single strip should completely overlap the top ceiling framing joist, whereas the other half needs to overlap the frame of your existing folding ladder. All these strips will temporarily support the whole weight of your ladder while all of its screws or the nails are also removed.
  3. Now just remove off all the nails and screws which are connecting the mainframe of the ladder to its surrounding attic joists. You have to cut the nails by using any reciprocating saw. This is to be done by slipping through the blade all in between the ladder frame as well as attic joists. You have to stand on the A-frame folding ladder. Avoid standing on the folding attic ladder.
  4. It’s time to fold the attic ladder fully after which you have to push it up and back inside the attic. Keep on pushing it until the front fully clear the main lip of a temporary 1-by-4 strip. Bring your ladder down using the hole.
  5. For keeping the ladder centred, you have to insert the shims all around the main perimeter of your ladder frame. You can also extend the ladder and then pre-drill the holes into the locations. Check out the manual as it has been specifically mentioned in the ladder’s instruction manual. Screw into the supplied lag bolts over the specified locations. The bolts should be going all through the ladder’s frame. it has to be in the direction of the shims as well as attic joists.
  6. Remove off any temporary support. Now you have to fold the bottom area of your ladder in a way that they are completely straight from the top 2 sections. They should be pointing towards the ground. Now locate one of the 1-by-4-inch strips in one line. This needs to be done by using a stringer by making sure it reaches the surface ground.
  7. Now you have to place the second 1-by-4-inch board on the edge and flat on the ground. It needs to be beside the very first 1-by-4 strip. You have to mark the very first strip by using a pencil line. It needs to be all mark over the point where the second strip is intersecting. Cut this whole angle by using a circular saw. Now you have to slide the angle-cut 1-by-4 until and unless it is fully flat on the ground. Next now do the marking at the top end of the 1-by-4 where it is touching the area of the middle ladder stinger. You have to cut 1-by-4 strip right in this location.
  8. You have to locate the template all along with the stinger into the bottom area of your ladder and later on transfer the length and foot angle by using a pencil. Now just cut the ladder at this angle by using a circular saw. You have to perform this step for both stingers. Now just extend the bottom section of your ladder. Make sure that all the three sections have to be in a straight line without any gaps happening in between the stringers.
  9. Now fold your ladder up. Locate the trim all around the perimeter of your ladder. Just simply nail it right into position by using any finishing nail gun.

Read more: A Quick Guide on Different Types of Attic Doors-How to Choose Best Attic Space Door?

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