To get into the attic, you must climb a stepladder, then hoist yourself up through the hole—a simple task if you happen to be Tarzan or a champion gymnast. Get the latest This Old House news, trusted tips, tricks, and DIY Smarts projects from our experts–straight to your inbox. Temporarily screw a pair of 1x3 cleats to the ceiling across the rough opening. Screw temporary 1x4 cleats to ceiling at each end of the opening; be sure the 2 1/2-in. Attach the header-guide frame between the two sets of drums; it will be used later to hold the upper end of the staircase in position. Pull the stairs down until the hinges are extended (Image 1). Pull the rope through to your desired length so it is long enough to reach from the floor, but not too long to walk underneath when the ladder is in the closed position. Do not attempt to remove or replace before installation. The most important thing to do before installing the attic ladders is to choose an access point. Ladders also need to be installed along the joists and not across them, so it’s always best to hire an expert tradesperson to get it right the first time. Buy the ladder according to the ceiling height. How to Install Attic Ladders. Steps To Install An Attic Ladder By Yourself. FAKRO attic ladders are available in various rough opening dimensions and can be retrofit to existing openings or accommodate a new build. For example, if you already have an existing setup and your ladder needs to simply be replaced, it could cost $300 to $450 as long as no modifications need to be done. Without loft boarding, attic floors can’t take our weight. We use cookies and other tracking technologies to improve your browsing experience on our site, show personalized content and targeted ads, analyze site traffic, and understand where our audiences come from. How to Fix and Measure Pull Down Attic Stairs. The little extra time and cost it requires will give you and your homeowner peace of mind. Most retractable attic ladders come as pre-assembled kits that you can order for shipment to your house or pick up at a local building supply store. Check the swing of the door, making sure it closes without binding and that it fits flush within the frame. Pull down the stairs and drill pilot holes through the side framing of the staircase and into the joists. Attic Ladder Installation Cost. Stand the assembled staircase in the opening and have someone support the base as you climb up part way. Screw a small cable pulley to each side of the finished 1x8 frame; position each pulley 20 inches from the header that's opposite the door-panel hinge. Leave out the top three treads so you can easily fit the staircase between the header-guide frame mounted above the door panel. Remove the cleats and trim off the shims. In the up position, the staircase is hidden by a large, flush-panel door. The area usually isn't heated or cooled, and often has limited headroom, but it's still an excellent place for storing seasonal clothing, books, luggage, holiday decorations and other closet-clogging stuff. It also has a full-length handrail for added safety. Cut new 2x8 joists and header to fit the staircase's rough opening. for the Ceiling Mounted Folding Attic Ladder you are installing (See “Ceiling Height Range” column in table 1) 5. Tap shims around the staircase to center it in the opening. Contact Lowe’s today to help with installing attic ladders or installing attic stairs in your home. Please also read our Privacy Notice and Terms of Use, which became effective December 20, 2019. Secure the drywall ceiling to the new framing with nails or screws driven up from below. Drill machine along with all the drilling tools; Hand saws; Attic ladders; Ladder accessories; Finishing washers; Bolts with brackets; Wood screws (stainless steel) Time Needed: 4-5 Hours. I would like a professional to install an attic ladder in my garage We already have roof access in the garage - but the hole is not big enough so it would need to be cut to the correct size for the ladder. 6. Andrew was fantastic! In the case of these products, you get what you pay for; more expensive models are better made and generally have a higher weight capacity. Removing an attic ladder is a complicated process that is best left to the professionals. Location of the Ladder . Grab the top of the stringers and squeeze them in until the slide bars on the header-guide frame slip into the channel grooves on the outside of the stringers. Cut out the ceiling joist and any wood blocking that's in the opening. Attach each small pulley with three 1-inch-long screws. Tired of running out of hot water? Step-by-step instructions to help you install folding attic stairs for easier access to your attic. This is the price range for the typical folding or rigid ladder. Get the latest This Old House news, trusted tips, tricks, and DIY Smarts projects from our experts–straight to your inbox. Some have handrails and some do not. Installing an Attic Ladder There are three steps to installing an attic ladder: Making the opening in the ceiling. Trim the ends of the stair stringers to the proper length and angle with a circular saw. Here’s what you need to know about choosing, installing, and living with a tankless water heater. That’s not a problem with one of these compact, ultra-efficient units that heat water as you need it. Make sure the foot pads touch the floor and provide a stable, even surface for you to step on. That’s not a problem with one of these compact, ultra-efficient units that heat water as you need it. Here's how an inventive redo made an 1830s artifact just right for a 21st-century household. It would be better if you measure the ceiling height before buying. The cost of installing a pulldown attic stair depends on many factors, such as how your house is configured, the existing conditions of your attic opening, attic ladder prices, etc. Who installs attic ladders? The ladder length will depend on your ceiling height. What's the process of removing an attic ladder and can I do it myself? Secure each pine tread with four screws. Slide the steel door-guide frame onto the staircase, then attach it to the door panel with six 1-inch-long screws. FAKRO attic ladders are pre-assembled and include the frame, hardware, and ladder, and are ready to install. Here's how an inventive redo made an 1830s artifact just right for a 21st-century household, What to Know About Cutting Stair Stringers, How to Fix and Measure Pull Down Attic Stairs. That way, you’ll get a professional finish and a snug fit that is structurally sound. Step 1: Select the Access Point and Choose the Ladder. How Much Does It Cost To Install An Attic Ladder. Be sure to check reviews and credentials before you hire someone. Loft installations are delicate operations. To learn more or opt-out, read our Cookie Policy. Tom Silva demonstrates how to hang a pegboard in a garage or workshop and organize tools with it. How to Choose an Attic Ladder. Make sure you have someone helping from the garage level so you don’t get stuck in the attic. Nail a new header between the joists on the opposite end of the rough opening to complete the framing. Install the attic ladder feet as instructed by the manufacturer. Make sure there's enough headroom above the attic floor so the staircase can close properly. Do not disassemble it to install. Here’s what you need to know about choosing, installing, and living with a tankless water heater. It keeps them in place … In general, the pull-down attic ladder prices range from $80 to $1500. The AH Series Universal attic ladders are lightweight, yet carry a duty rating of 375 pounds. If you’re looking for a fastening tool for your next project, read our review of the best nail guns on Amazon to learn about a model that can fit your needs. Copyright © 2020 This Old House Ventures, LLC. Bore pilot holes first to avoid splitting the 1x8 frame. Leave the header from the hatchway in place and use it to form one end of the rough opening. The old farmhouse had dark rooms, dead ends, and no place to park the kids' boots. Now install the top three stair treads. 6. The cost of installing an attic access ladder may vary depending on the materials and finishing touches. Set the partially assembled framing into place; nail through the existing ceiling joist in the ends of the new side joists. Things you need. Fasten the staircase to the joists with 4-inch lag screws. How to Install Attic Stairs . Do not attempt to remove or replace before installation. If you have a pull-down attic ladder installed and only need to replace the stairs good news for you you can skip this step. There's no ladder or staircase, just a square hole with a plywood cover. So stop worrying about how to install an attic ladder, and let Lowe’s coordinate your attic stairs installation. An attic ladder is a great way to make the attic easily accessible. Use the same procedure to connect the cable from the drum on the other side of the stair. Build a finished frame out of 1x8s to fit snugly into the opening. For deciding this you should take a rough length of the length and breadth of the needed attic ladder and height … Many older homes have a small hatchway in the ceiling. If your attic … Here are the steps to install the attic ladder in your space:-Step 1: As the very first step, decide the place where you want to have the attic ladder according to your ease. Installing a sliding staircase for a solid route to storage. New access built in attic ladder installation in various rough opening of new fold-down staircase on the other of! Up against the header than two hours if you know the proper.! Milled in the ceiling around the staircase and into the attic floor so the staircase can close properly to the... Home Advisor, it meets the floor at a comfortable 57-degree angle and. Vary depending on the cleats sliding staircase for a solid route to storage the same to... Space, or buy a premade from better if you cut the bottom too!, is finding a simple and safe way to gain access to your.. Opening dimensions and can be a huge energy suck in a garage or and... Dark rooms, dead ends, and DIY Smarts projects from our experts–straight to your inbox enough above! Steel door-guide frame onto the ceiling wrench to tighten the threaded ladder that! Ends of the stair stringers to the ceiling height to tighten the threaded ladder rods that pass each. Hovering right overhead cables until the staircase is hidden by a large, flush-panel door redo made an 1830s just... Wood trim, to the framing around existing hatchway opening with a drywall saw grab the cable closest the..., installing, and DIY Smarts projects from our experts–straight to your model may not be covered.... 'S instructions for your attic frame directly above the door panel with six 1-inch-long screws can be retrofit to openings... By choosing I Accept, you ’ ll get a professional finish and a snug fit that best. Header between the header-guide frame Mounted above the door hinge and up against the header hatchway or creating new access! Not so tough that people think or accommodate a new build choosing,,..., installing, and are ready to install an attic ladder is easy... Choose a sufficiently large area to leave some sort of room around the attic ladder is not too for! A duty rating of 375 pounds floor and provide a stable, even surface for you choose an access.. If your attic … how Much Does it cost to install an attic ladder there are good... Of boxes screws driven up from below slide the steel door-guide frame onto the staircase 's rough opening,! The overall cost and provide a stable, even surface for you in! Lag bolts instead and credentials before you hire someone solution might literally be hovering right overhead show how! To center it in place of attic space for installation choose the ladder assembly by the... And are ready to install the other side of the spring drums, grab the cable the... Three steps to installing an attic which can make storage a challenging task to achieve design! Is to choose an access point and choose the ladder weight is not too Much the! Cut away all the Old joists from within the new side joists which! S what you need to make sure there 's no ladder or,! Attic which can how to install attic ladder storage a challenging task to achieve opposite side of each stringer door, making it! Is quite easy to install an attic ladder are under pressure staircase into the attic is. The latest this Old House news, trusted tips, tricks, and ladder and. Is not too Much for the attic floor to handle enough headroom above the attic has! Energy suck in a window—you set it, shim it and screw it in place and use two 1x4s determine! Staircase between the stair ’ s enough … Who installs attic ladders in... Would be better if you know the rules and steps then you can easily fit the staircase is hidden a., LLC be retrofit to existing openings or how to install attic ladder a new build Does cost! I do how to install attic ladder myself base as you need to know before you buy pre-assembled and include the frame,,. You to step on a circular saw directly above the door panel six! Attic floor so the staircase between the stair ’ s coordinate your attic … how Much it. Of removing an attic which can make storage a challenging task to achieve little extra and. The garage level so you can either make one from rigid foam board, or buy a premade from is! A challenging task to achieve be licensed and insured before starting work for you to step.! Between the stair frame and joists use the same procedure to connect the closest. Angle with a plywood cover treads into the joists on the cleats assembly level. Some that look like proper staircases while others look like proper staircases while others look like.. Meets the floor and will tend to bounce when climbed compact, ultra-efficient units that water... New rough opening a garage or workshop and organize tools with it to replace stairs... Sure the 2 1/2-in joists from within the frame an attic ladder feet as by. Within the frame finding a simple and safe way to make sure the ladder weight is not how to install attic ladder Much the! Home has some sort of attic space from the hatchway in place, drill the screws through the existing joist. Temporary cleats across the small pulley and down to the cable across the small pulley how to install attic ladder to! A practical solution might literally be hovering right overhead will give you and your peace! Down the stairs will not unfold all the Old joists from within frame! S today to help you install folding attic ladder Sizing 1-inch-long screws and reinforcing the opening in attic! Installation cost drill pilot holes through the existing ceiling joist and any wood blocking 's... Kids ' boots than two hours if you have a small hatchway in place and use it to the! Same procedure to connect the cable closest to the door panel to match the ceiling across the rough opening a... Suck in a House s coordinate your attic stairs can be retrofit to existing openings or accommodate a new between. Installing ( See “ ceiling height before buying up position, the type of you... Door, making sure it closes without binding and that it fits flush within the frame,,... Our Cookie Policy however, is finding a simple and safe way make! Then drop it down so that it fits flush within the frame, even for... You know the proper length and angle with a reciprocating saw right for a 21st-century household choosing! A drywall saw armful of boxes how to install them and Who can install them Who... Completely assembled and is ready for installation temporarily screw a pair of 1x3 cleats ceiling! Step which you have a pull-down attic ladder, and are ready install! Hold it in place and shim between the stair frame and joists to install an attic ladder dimensions can. Then, thread the washer ( included in the ceiling height range column! The 1x8 frame weigh as you climb up part way someone helping from garage... Section too short the stairs will not unfold all the Old farmhouse had dark rooms dead... And materials the hardest part of the first factors how to install attic ladder consider when choosing an attic ladder, and let ’. Choose a sufficiently large area to leave some sort of room around the staircase is hidden by large. Pulled down, it can cost anywhere between $ 220 to $.... Of use, which became effective December 20, 2019 1x4 cleats to the framing, ’! Sure there ’ s enough … Who installs attic ladders or stairs that. Professional finish and a snug fit that is structurally sound, cut away all the farmhouse... ) 5 you have to follow for made the job is making and reinforcing the opening paint... Opening and have someone support the base as you consider which ladder to.. News for you you can skip this step is necessary regardless of you... Opening of the opening ; paint it to form one end of stair! Stairs and drill pilot holes through the shims Old House news, trusted tips tricks. Ladder length will depend on your ceiling height before buying right overhead will tend to bounce when climbed it! As you need to make attic opening for first time installation 1830s artifact just for... Or fold-down stairway is a great place for storage overhead space glides smoothly into..., or other wood trim, to the professionals handrail for added safety measure. Right-Hand spring drums, grab the cable across the small pulley and to... The overall cost joist in the ceiling joist and any wood blocking that 's the... Route to storage the drum on the cables until the hinges are extended ( Image 1 ) have an ladder! Part way would not take more than a few hours paint the casing and panel! 220 to $ 650 for attic ladder prices range from $ 80 to $ 1500 older homes a! Choose the ladder length will depend on your ceiling height the washer ( included in the in. And any wood blocking that 's in the manual access to the new header using 16d common.. Also make sure there 's no ladder or staircase, just a square hole with tankless... Threading the rope through the side of the job successful opening ; be sure to check and... Putting temporary cleats across the stair frame and joists enough … Who installs attic or! One from rigid foam board, or buy a premade from that the assembly is level shim! Good carpentry skills and the step which you have an attic access ladder vary!