Extension ladders are composed of two sections, a base and a telescoping section called the ‘fly. Whatever height a ladder has while unextended will almost double once it is fully deployed. It will never fully double, because there needs to be overlap between the sections to create stability. So a ladder that extends to 10 metres will be composed of two 6 metre sections, rather than 5 – the extra metre will overlap to strengthen the centre. Most extension ladders feature a rope and pulley system to allow you to safely and conveniently extend them to the desired height and secure them there before climbing.
Step ladders are the most popular and most widely used type of ladder. The reasons for this are primarily their versatility and their relative safety. Step ladders have four feet instead of just two, and form a self-supporting A-frame when in use. This makes them more secure, and means they can be used for a wide range of tasks.