Bifold Patio Doors FAQ

Bifold Patio Doors FAQ: Most Common Questions About Bifold Doors

The doors that you fit your house with are an essential part of the aesthetic and functionality of your home. Unfortunately, they can also be quite an investment. Bifold patio doors, in particular, have quite a few questions centered around their installation and use. If you have been considering bifold patio doors as an option for your home, you have come to the right place. Here, we have answered all the frequently asked questions about bifold doors. Hopefully, it will help you decide whether or not they are the right option for you.

Most Common Questions About Bifold Doors

  1. What are the types of bifold doors (materials)?
  2. Can bifold doors be opened from the outside?
  3. Are bifold doors weatherproof?
  4. What are the problems with bifold doors?
  5. How long do bifold doors last?
  6. Are bifold doors secure?
  7. Are bifold doors energy efficient?

1. What are the types of bifold doors (materials)?

Bifold doors come in various materials. You will quickly notice differences in some of their price. However, they are also different in their durability, longevity and security. Some examples of the types of materials you can find bifold doors in include:

  • All wood 
  • All aluminum
  • Aluminum-clad wood

All wood bi-fold doors are generally not highly recommended since this material expands and contracts when the temperature changes. If not compensated for in the design, the movement can allow water to leak in around the door.

Aluminum-clad wood can help make up for this movement since aluminum isn't affected by temperature changes. It adds some strength and longevity to the door as well.

All aluminum bifold doors maximize the strength and durability of the material. However, this is often reflected in the price, which might put it outside of your budget.

2. Can bifold doors be opened from the outside?

Whether a bifold door can open from the outside or not somewhat depends on the design of the door. However, bifold doors are generally set on a sliding path that they can slide on whether you are trying to open them from the inside or the outside. Either way, they will open the same way. 

Depending on their installation, they fold inside the house or outside onto the patio. Be sure to consider the placement of the doors when they are folded open before installation.

3. Are bifold doors weatherproof?

If you are accounting for all of the technicalities incorporated into the term "weatherproof," then no. Bifold doors, like most of the other external door options, are not 100% weatherproof. That is even more true when you consider the various types of patio doors. To protect your door make sure it is under a covered area. Also ask about weather resistant thresholds. 

4. What are the problems with bifold doors?

The most common issues with bifold doors are the sliding tracks they are set in. The design might be beautiful, but it can frequently result in misalignment. That means as you try to open or close the doors, they will get stuck along the track. It commonly results from the doors having slipped or pivoting pins that have come loose. In addition, if you have wooden bifold doors, the wood's expansion, contraction, or breakage can also cause misalignment.

5. How long do bifold doors last?

The longevity of your bifold doors depends on the kind of material you have chosen. Wooden bifold doors will not last as long. Without any maintenance, they are only likely to last 10 to 15 years. However, if you continue to treat the wood to keep rot out of it, you will find that it will last much longer.

Aluminum bifold doors are the most durable and hence the longest lasting. They have a life expectancy of about 45 years, far outlasting any other material.

6. Are bifold doors secure?

One of the major upshots of bifold doors is their security. They are widely regarded as one of the safest types of doors you can put in your patio space. The way that they fold and lock makes them much more difficult to open. Easy misalignment if forced open is also a positive since it will cause the door to lock in place early on if someone unwanted tries to get into your home.

You can also add bifold security screens to enhance the overall security of your patio area. Security screens are mesh doors you can install in front of or behind the bifold door. They are more popular in warm regions since they allow you to open the door without letting in insects while increasing your home's ventilation. Some of them will also help reduce UV radiation and keep out dust.

7. Are bifold doors energy efficient?

The windows and design of a bifold door are what determines its energy efficiency. There is a unit of measurement for this called the "U-Value." So be sure to check the U-Value of your bifold door before purchasing. Generally, bifold doors are mostly made of glass so they won't be the most energy efficient feature of your home. If energy efficiency is a priority ask your door dealer how the manufacturer can make the door as energy efficient as possible. 

Choosing a door for your patio space can determine the feeling of the space. Selecting the right materials and design for your home is sure to be an investment, but it can also mean not changing it again for the rest of the time you spend in the house. Do you have more questions about bifold doors? Check out our related posts or take a look at some product pages.

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