Access hiring guide: Choosing the right equipment for work at height

How to choose the right access equipment for safe and efficient work at height.

When working at height, there are plenty of access equipment options to choose from. From step ladders and one man towers, to scaffolding towers that can reach working heights of 14 metres, we’ve made it extra simple for you to choose the right access equipment by putting together a hiring checklist. Remember, the experienced and friendly Alliance team are always on hand to provide advice!

What are your height requirements?

It’s important to accurately measure the height you need to reach and how many people you want working at one time.

If you’re working at low-level, our range of durable step ladders, bandstands, podiums and pole ladders have got you covered.

Bandstands are best for when you need to work across larger areas as they allow you to create a “cage” or “false floor” in modular units. This is ideal for bricklaying, plastering, painting and decorating.

Podium Steps are better if you are working in a single area, providing a safer alternative to a step ladder.

Low level access equipment to hire from Alliance Tool Hire

For high-level work, Scaffold Towers are ideal, where single width towers reach a 12m working height and double width reach a 14m working height, while also providing more room for equipment or another person.

Up to a safe working height of 6.1m, One Man Towers provide an alternative that can be assembled by one person, with a lighter frame size and smaller base.

Finally, Double and Triple Extension Ladders run up to 9.9m and are useful for jobs like guttering repair where you don’t have the base access for a tower and need access equipment that can be assembled more quickly.

High level access equipment to hire

Another height you should take into account is your own! Working height as an industry standard is set at 2 metres from the platform height, but if you’re handling heavy materials (stone, bricks or tools) then you might not be able to reach as high for as long.

Are there obstructions?

You may sometimes need access equipment that can be manoeuvred around obstacles, or taken through doorways so it’s good to consider its route and if the area is particularly difficult to get to. Our One Man Tower and Folding Tower can be taken apart and put together quickly and easily, and so are good choices for hard to reach areas.

Sometimes obstacles like stairs just can’t be avoided, where you can opt to hire our Stair Tower, which is specifically designed to be constructed on a flight of stairs to provide easier access.

Easy to move and assemble access equipment to hire from Alliance Tool Hire

Fibreglass or aluminium?

At Alliance Tool Hire we supply both aluminium and fibreglass ladders and towers and each come with their own benefits.

The main reason to use fibreglass is its resistance to electricity and flames, which is helpful for rail and electrical work that is often near power lines. However, they are much heavier than their aluminium counterparts!

Aluminium access towers and ladders are light and affordable, and easy to move around your building site. The only downside is that they are highly conductive and so should not be used near sources of electricity.

Fibreglass ladders and towers to hire from Alliance Tool Hire


Our scaffold tower range includes two industry standards, 3T and AGR.

Each has a different tried-and-tested method of safe assembly, so your choice comes down to personal preference.

3T (“through the trap door”) reduces the risk of falling during the assembling process by removing the need to stand on an unprotected platform. As the guard rails above are secured, you then climb onto the platform to continue the construction process.

AGR (“advanced guard rail”) uses specially designed temporary guard rail units which are locked in place from the level below and moved up to the platform level. This means the operator is protected and never exposed to the risk of falling from an unguarded platform.

View our full range of access and tower products

Get in touch with us today to find out more about the access products available from Alliance Tool Hire and what is best suited for your job.

Find your nearest Alliance Tool Hire branch and speak to our friendly and experienced team. 

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