Aluminum extension ladders are an incredibly useful tool for the homeowner, or for anyone in the home repair business. These tools allow you to reach all corners of your home or building project, and they're incredibly versatile and easy to carry. When an extension ladder is bent during an accident, you don't have to throw away the useful tool. In some cases, you can repair a bent aluminum extension ladder and reuse it for many more years.
Things You'll Need
Aluminum extension ladder
Hold the ladder in place using a vise or an assistant. For small bent sections, hit the damaged area with a hammer, adjusting the size of the hammer to reflect the seriousness of the bend. If you wish to prevent cosmetic damage to the ladder, wrap the surface in duct tape before you strike it.
Press the ladder against the corner of a strong building or other metal edge and push against both sides of the ladder to repair larger bends. You will need multiple assistants for this method.
Wrap any holes or sharp metal edges with strips of rubber, and secure them with duct tape. This will prevent the edges from becoming a hazard.
Before repairing the bend, appraise the extent of the damage to your extension ladder, or have a knowledgeable expert do so for you. Any damage to a ladder can render it unsafe for use, and make it capable of collapsing at any moment when bearing weight. If the damage is on the top extension half of the ladder, it may be less serious than damage to the bottom half of the ladder. When in doubt about the safety of a ladder, always err on the side of caution; dispose of potentially unsafe ladders and purchase new ones. Many types of ladders are recyclable.
Throw away your ladder or bring it to a construction company if the damage has occurred to the feet, the rails that connect the two halves of the ladder or the locking portions of the ladder. These critical safety components cannot withstand much damage or bending without becoming dangerously unsafe; if this is the case, do not keep the ladder around the home or workplace or it may be used accidentally.