Ladders: Repair – Plastic Ends

by Barry and Cindy 1997 U270 36′

We replaced all the plastic ends of our rear motorhome ladder. Many were cracked and some broken.

It’s very dangerous to use a ladder with broken parts. Those creaks when climbing ladder needs to be heeded.

I decided to purchase two complete sets of plastic ladder ends and a new set of screws. One set is for future spare parts.

In the past low quantities of new ladder parts were complementary. Maybe things have changed or because I wanted a complete set with screws, I was charged $1.95 for each part# VLPRBS, end cap with screws. Shipping was $18.50.

We did have the top right ladder part come loose from the mounting hardware that is attached to the lift-up engine door.

I called Atwood and they sent me a couple of “star” attachments that slip into the ladder and have a female threaded hole.

To install the ”star” nut, I would have loosened other ladder ends, which were holding just fine. And would have to get out the old “star”, etc.

I decided to put a screw through the mounting into the loose ladder end, and problem solved.

Broken step mounting before replacement. Very dangerous to use a ladder with broken or cracked ends. Care must be taken to examine each step end and those creaks when climbing the rear ladder should be taken seriously.

Cracked ends may be difficult to see. The crack usually happens in the center.

Interior view of what is in each aluminum step. Note the two side screw slots, which are the only thing holding the plastic ends to the individual step

Close-up of the end of a new step end

New step end. Note that it is the center screw that fastens each step end to the vertical part of the latter attached to the motorhome. New center screw is self-drilling and care should be used to make a new inside hole if original was not straight. The outer hole is always reused. I found several original center screw holes were put in at an angle where they did not exit the ladder across from entry hole in the ladder. I redirected a new self-drilling screw and made a new straight hole. If you can find the same screw head which fits the ends, stainless would work ok.

The ladder is attached to the rear engine access door

Close-up of the end part and new screws

It pays to periodically replace all step ends if many are cracked or plastic ends brittle.

Many step ends were damaged

Parts explosion of one step, note the small screws that hold the end to step and the large screw that holds step to the ladder

All steps removed, before installing original steps back with new ends and new screws.