A high quality ladder for an above ground pool is more than a “nice-to-have” feature, it’s a prerequisite. In fact, it should be given a higher priority than pool hygiene. Falling, tripping or slipping from any height can be detrimental to your health. And considering that some pools are over 50 inches high, such a fall can be life-threatening.
Having your own above ground pool in the backyard is fantastic, but not if it poses a significant hazard. If your pool is used by people across all ages; from kids to seniors and persons with physical disabilities, we recommend installing the best above ground pool ladders.
What’s the Best Above Ground Pool Ladder?
A number of above ground pools do include ladders in their kits. Unfortunately, a majority of these ladders are unstable, which renders them irrelevant. If your pool has an unsteady ladder or doesn’t even have one, it’s advisable that you invest in high-quality models.
1. Drop-In Step/Ladder For Above Ground Pool
If you prefer a pool entry system that combines stairs and a ladder, the Drop-In model is an excellent option. When getting into pool, users need to climb the ladder from the outside and then use the steps that descend into the pool.
Another plus of the Drop-In pool entry is that it’s easy to install. Constructed using heavy duty plastic, which is then molded to incorporate an element of design, this A-frame ladder is very sturdy. Also, this ladder comes with handrails to enhance support, especially when it’s being used by the elderly.
2. Confer Plastics Above Ground Swimming Pool Ladder
One of the best things about this Confer Plastics pool ladder is that it has a pretty high weight limit of about 400 pounds. If you factor in its white durable frame and the wide steps, this model is the perfect fit for heavy users. We also like that this ladder comes with bracket, which aid in securing it firmly to your pool deck.
Confer Plastics ladder is recommended for any above ground pool that has a flat bottom. The pieces have a snap-together design, which makes for a smooth installation. What’s more, the side openings ensure that water continues flowing behind the ladder; hence, preventing the growth of algae. It also means that you can use pool chemicals without worrying about them getting stuck behind this unit.
3. BESTWAY 58042 Above Ground Pool Ladder
If you’re looking for an above ground pool ladder that is stable, the Bestway 58042 is your best bet. It consists of incredibly durable plastic steps, providing a steady platform for all your pool users. This 36-inch pool ladder is also designed with unique grip that prevents your feet from slipping.
What’s more, the ladder’s frame is not susceptible to rusting and features a shape that is very sturdy. One portion of the ladder stays inside in the pool while the other portion sits on dry land. Another good thing about Bestway 58042 is that it’s easy to put together thanks to the instructions provided by the manufacturer.
4. Easy-Incline Above Ground Pool Ladder
Available for less than $200, the Easy Incline is a budget friendly ladder for above ground pool owners. It can accommodate weights of up to 300 pounds. The way this ladder is designed is that its steps sizes decrease gradually as you ascend, giving users a real staircase feel. The bottom step has a depth of 9.5 inches while the top one is just 6.5 inches deep.
The Easy-Incline is specifically designed for pools that are about 52-inches deep. It’s also a pretty sturdy model. Installing this pool ladder is a breeze. The manufacturer has provided all the accessories you need to assemble it.
5. Above Ground Pool Flip Up Ladder System by BiltMor
Do you have an above ground pool that’s used by both seniors and toddlers, the BiltMor ladder will be an excellent addition. Fabricated from polyethylene, this is one of the most durable pool ladders. It can be installed on any above ground pool that has no deck.
And the best part is, this pool ladder adheres to all standards set by the National Spa & Pool Institute (NSPI), which means that it’s reliable and safe for use. Each step has a depth of 11 inches and a width of 21 inches, providing easy pool access for kids and the elderly. BiltMor pool ladder can support up to 350 lbs.
What Type Of Pool Entry System Is the Best?
Pool Steps Entry System
Pool stairs and steps help to ensure that you enter your swimming pool safely. They are particularly recommended in cases where the pool is used by kids and the elderly. Such types of entry systems are capable of holding more weight than ladders can. Unfortunately, pool stairs are also a tad expensive. But considering the convenience they offer, they are worth the investment. The Pool steps entry system comes in two variations:
- plastic resin
- aluminum frame with plastic resin steps.
A-frame Pool Ladders
If pool steps are too expensive to purchase, another option you can consider is an A-frame ladder. This tool gives you a safe way of getting into and out of your pool. The only caveat is that A-frame ladders are not suitable for handicapped or the elderly. These ladders come in three variations:
- Aluminum frame consisting of plastic resin steps,
- Stainless steel frame also fitted with plastic resin steps
- An all-plastic resin ladder.
Now that you know the different types of pool entry systems at your disposal, the next factor to consider is the pool deck.
Do I Have A Pool Deck?
If you have one, then you’re in luck because some pool ladders and steps can attach to deck. Such pool entry systems designed for decks are connected using bolts and screws and then dropped directly into water with ease.
A-frame: Ladder or Ground to Pool Entry System
If your pool is the above ground type, an A-frame ladder is the most recommended entry system. You can choose from three different types:
- Standard A-frame ladder- this consists of one ladder that goes upwards on one side and another going downwards on the other side.
- A-frame ladder coupled with a pool stair entry- this one consists of just one ladder, which you use to climb out of your pool and a set of stairs that help you descend into your pool.
- A frame with a set of stairs on either side- it solely consists of steps on both sides.
The best A-frame ladder that makes it easy to access your pool is the last type. However, it’s also the most expensive. There’s also the option of forgoing all these A-frame ladders and just getting a pool deck. But keep in mind that not every swimming pool comes with a deck.
If you decide to go for the A-frame ladder, ensure it has a way of preventing your little ones from accessing the pool unsupervised. A majority of these A-frame ladders are designed in such a way that allows you to flip up the outside ladders before locking them into place. Even if you go for the A-frame with stairs, ensure that it comes with a gate.
Deck to Pool: Ladder or Stair Entry System
With this type of pool entry system, the stairs or ladder starts from your deck and then it goes directly into the pool. To guarantee optimal stability, the entry system- whether it’s a set of stairs or a ladder- ought to be bolted to your deck.
The Features You Want For Your Above Ground Pool Ladders and Steps
If you’ve decided to get a ladder or steps for your above ground pool, the first thing you need to ensure is that they have slip-resistant surfaces. Obviously, your feet will be wet when you’re getting out of the pool, which can increase your likelihood of falling if you step on vinyl or plastic that does not have any tread. Ideally, you should invest in pool steps and ladders that have molded textures or add-on non-slip surfaces.
Other than the type of surface, you also need to consider the design of these pool entry systems. These are the main designs you’re likely to find on the market.
The A-frame features a staircase style. With this design, one end of the stepladder is placed inside the pool while the other end remains outside. A few A-Frame ladders also come with roll guards.
It is simply a set of steps that help you climb up to an elevated surface. From this point, you can jump into the pool at any time. If you opt for this design, there are two things to keep in mind. Firstly, the height of the outside steps should correspond to the height of your pool. Two, some outside steps have handrails while other models don’t.
A hybrid will have both the A-frame and outside steps. The ladder is placed on the inside while the steps are positioned on the outside.
Why Do I Need An Above Ground Pool Ladder?
As mentioned earlier, most above ground pools come with inbuilt ladders. Sadly, a majority of these ladders are of inferior quality as they’re constructed from cheap, unreliable materials. You should check your above ground pool ladder and ensure that it’s not made from cheap metal, which is likely to bend or break. Remember that a pool ladder is the best entry point, especially for families that have kids and pets. That’s right- we even have pool ladders and ramps for dogs.
With kids, physically challenged or the elderly, these groups of people experience difficulty getting into and out of swimming pools. This is where above ground pool ladders come to the rescue.
What Are The Benefits Of An Above Ground Pool Ladder?
Ladders designed for above ground pools confer multiple benefits. These include:
Pools are and always will be one of the most unsafe places; whether you’re using a public pool or the one installed in your backyard. The chances of an individual slipping and falling when around a pool, are high. It is why safety should be your primary concern when you are purchasing a pool ladder.
With a well-built, sturdy and stable pool ladder, you can avoid, or more specifically, reduce the possibility of falling. Many pool owners neglect installing ladders. If you sail in this boat, then consider this- pool accidents can cause severe injuries such as bruising, lacerations, broken spine, twisted joints and even brain injuries. All these are health problems that can change your life completely.
With an above ground pool ladder, you’re certain that both you and your family members are safe when using the pool.
Swimming, floating and playing mermaid races are all fun activities that you can engage in at the pool. However, if you are constantly on the lookout or worried about pool accidents, then it takes the fun out of your pool activity. Thankfully, pool ladders can give you the peace of mind you’re looking for. You don’t need to worry even if you’re heavy as some pool ladders are specifically designed for heavy people. They have high weight limits and handrails to provide support and enhance your stability as you climb in or out of your pool.
In some states, the law of Premises Liability is enforced. According to this rule, property owners are to be held accountable if individuals sustain injuries when they’re using unsafe or defective devices during their time at the property. Put simply; if any one person suffers an injury when using your above ground pool, you will shoulder the blame. In fact, you will have to cover their medical expenses, lost wages and any other liabilities that they sue you for.
Luckily, you can prevent such situations from happening by investing in a quality above ground pool ladder. Pool ladders are a must-have, particularly for persons running commercial pools.
The Bottom Line
Not every individual has the arm strength to climb in and out an above ground pool with ease, This is where ladders come in handy. Designed with sturdy materials, these ladders provide safe passages to your pool. And, they can be used by persons across all ages: children, teens and seniors.
However, they come in multiple designs, so you’ll have to assess your needs and decide on the best one. Another factor you should consider is the ladder’s weight capacity. Ideally, you should go for above ground pool ladders with high weight limits. This way, you won’t discriminate anyone from using your pool.
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