Published Date: July 31, 2021
Last Updated on April 10, 2023 by Camper Front
But how do you install an RV ladder if you have no prior knowledge? Installing an RV ladder doesn’t have to be difficult, and we will show you how to do it shortly.
There comes a time in every RV owner’s life when he or she has to climb to the roof of their trailer – just think about it for a moment.
RV ladder gives you EASY and QUICK access to the rooftop for storage, time-to-time repairs, and minor maintenance, as well as enjoying the panoramic views of the surroundings with a shot of tequila.
Unfortunately, not all trailers come with an already installed ladder. So you might have to do the handy work yourself.
How Do You Install An RV Ladder?
Follow the 4 simple steps below to learn how to Install an RV ladder neatly without breaking the big tools:
Place the ladder in the desired location on the RV. Ladders generally are installed on the rear of the vehicle. But for precautionary reasons, contact the ladder manufacturer if you plan to install it elsewhere on the RV.
Mark two holes in the top of the frame on the RV –these holes should be made at the spot where the ladder connects to the frame. Then, drill two 3/32-inch pilot holes into the frame, about one inch deep.
Thirdly, coat the underside of the mounting tabs with caulk or silicone, using a liberal amount.
Lastly, you want to attach the ladder with metal screws through the caulked mounting tabs.
Screw all the remaining screws and wipe off the excess sealant or caulk. Then, allow the caulk to dry and bond with the surface of the RV.
You should pull the sealant gently on the ladder to ensure it is attached firmly.
How Much Weight Can An RV Roof Hold?
Since RV ladders are almost inevitable, as one must eventually climb the roof one day, one needs to question the roof’s weight.
One of the frequently asked RV questions is whether or not it’s safe to walk on your RV, or even use the rooftop as an additional outdoor space to get a better view.
There’s a good chance you may have seen other campers posted up with lounge chairs on top of their roof –just chilling. The question is “is it safe?”
Of course, you can change the roof if it is damaged. But, replacing the roof will only cost you an arm and a leg. And, once the original roof of the RV is gone, it always becomes an unreliable factor.
So to avoid a story that touches the heart, you must know the roof’s weight limit and heed to it.
Generally, an RV roof can support approximately 250 to 300 lbs., which is good enough to handle one person.
Unfortunately, there is no precise roof capacity. Even the trailer’s specifications won’t mention it.
But you can judge the book by its cover based on the material, thickness, age, and the current condition of the roof.
Fiberglass roofs are the strongest and can support higher weights – up to 3-4 people, as long as it’s in condition.
WARNING! Never walk or run on the roof when it’s wet or damaged –take precautions if for any reason you must be on the roof.
And also have it at the back of your mind this is not a piece of official advice coming from the RV manufacturers, so we’re not responsible for any accidents!
However, there’s a lot to consider before you can figure out the real-world weight of your rig.
According to professional campers, a telltale sign is if the rig comes equipped with a ladder. If it does, there’s a good chance that the trailer was designed to accommodate people on the roof.
But that’s just the tip of the iceberg! There are other things you need to put into perspective, like:
- What else is on the roof (the additional weight counts)
- Where on the roof you’re walking or sitting
- Manufacturer of your RV
If you follow our sure-fire method on how do you install an RV ladder step by step, you will certainly get the job done.
Although, if you just want to skip the installation hassle, telescoping ladders are your best bet.
Unlike the fixed, telescoping ladder needs no installation.
Instead, it uses a specific type of technology that allows you to extend and lock the ladder by foot at your desired height –thus, making them highly versatile.
They are safe, and once you are done, you can easily transport and store them at a premium. I highly recommend them.