Dont you just love an attic? All that space that is out of sight and out of mind until you need what is up there. Sure, it is dark and dusty but it is absolutely ideal for keeping rarely used items out of the way. A universal problem with attics, though, is access.
Knowing how to install pull-down attic stairs is really important because without them, you have to use a ladder which no doubt, you will have to carry through the inside of the house, and position firmly so that it does not fall while you are climbing it. This is especially hazardous when you are trying to carry items while climbing because one wrong step and you could injure yourself, as well as damage the goods in your arms. If you learn how to install pull-down attic stairs, you can save yourself a lot of drama, inconvenience and the potential for damage or injury. Once the job is done, it is done for a long time and you can do away with that rickety old ladder once and for all.
Before you go along to your home improvement center or lumberyard to ask for information on the hardware you will need, gather some measurements of the hatch size, its height from the floor, and the length and width of the hallway from which you will gain access to the attic.
Take along a few photographs of your attic and the space below it so that the assistant will know what you mean when you refer to it. Ask if they have any brochures on how to install pull down attic stairs so that you can take them home and study up before making a purchase. Check that the product you want to buy will be an appropriate size for the stairs to swing open, and there must be enough floor space at the bottom to permit safe access to the stairs themselves.
Choose your Stairs
Have you considered whether to use aluminum or wood stairs? Wood can sometimes be subject to high humidity and temperature variations and as a result, can sustain damage to the wood or the fasteners can become loose. While you are learning how to install pull down attic stairs, you should learn how to keep them in good order as well. Unless you are prepared to maintain them once or twice per year, you might be better advised to go for aluminum which, although a little more expensive, will be more advantageous in the long run. They are also stronger and sturdier.
Pulldown Stair Kits
Folding, pull-down stairs are available in kit form and come with all the instructions you will need to install them. You would not attempt to build them yourself unless you were an expert carpenter. As it is, learning how to install pull down attic stairs is quite challenging and although they are designed to be installed simply, the actual job is considered an advanced project.
See if you can enlist the help of a carpenter friend, or at least someone who has done enough DIY projects to know what he is doing. Assemble all the required tools and materials before beginning so that the job can be done as efficiently as possible.
If you believe that the task may be beyond your capabilities, seek the advice of a qualified carpenter. Taking risks with safety is never a good idea, and the last thing you want is to have the stairs collapse beneath you while you are carrying heavy items up to your attic. Your home improvement store may even offer an installation service that you can take advantage of for a moderate fee.