7 Things You Need to Know Before Buying Bifold Doors

7 Things You Need to Know Before Buying Bifold Doors

Bifold or folding doors create a bold and expansive opening to the outdoors. If you have a home that glorifies social gatherings and outdoor living, bifold doors offer that perfect wall opening. When opened up, bifold doors give your home a generous airflow and uninterrupted views. They do this by concertinaing on a sliding track to the side of the room.

While bifold doors are popular for restaurants, more and more homeowners are selecting this superior door system. The cost of bifold doors may hurt a little, but these elegant and considered door systems may increase the value and appeal of your home. 

Keep in mind that bifold doors don't work in every home, and you may need to see what else is out there.

7 Things You Should Know About Bifold Doors

If you've decided that bifold doors are for you, consider these questions to help you choose a suitable configuration for your space.

Click the links below to skip ahead:

  1. What Materials are Bifold Doors Made From?
  2. Are Bifold Doors Top-Hung or Bottom-Rolling?
  3. What Type of Thresholds Do Exterior Bifold Doors Have?
  4. Should Bifold Doors Open In or Out?
  5. What Are The Most Common Problems With Bifold Doors?
  6. Are Bifold Doors Secure?
  7. Do Bifold Doors Add Value to Your House?

What Materials are Bifold Doors Made From?

Bifold door systems come in all the popular material options: wood, vinyl, composite, aluminum, and fiberglass. Bifold doors are primarily used as patio doors and need to be resistant against air leaks and durable against weathering. You also want a door material that isn't too heavy to open. 

Color preferences and the desire for a slim or sturdy look can also affect your material choice. Opt for a few quotes and ask your door system installers' input on insulation times, maintenance and warranty. 

While all the material options have their pros and cons, fiberglass and aluminum are durable choices. Both options are generally more affordable, lightweight, and low maintenance. If you love that wood grain look, then many manufacturers can emulate this on fiberglass material. 

Are Bifold Doors Top-Hung or Bottom-Rolling?

Bifold doors come in a range of configurations. Here are the main differences between top-hung and bottom rolling bi-fold doors:

Top-hung doors

  • They can be unstable due to the weight that pulls them down
  • Requires a substantial beam overhead to bear the weight of the doors

Bottom rolling doors

  • More stable due to their lowered center of gravity
  • Easier to install

As you can tell, bottom rolling doors may be the better choice. However, it's essential to make sure the tracks remain clean, as leaves, debris, and dirt can affect the ease of use. 

What Type of Thresholds Do Exterior Bifold Doors Have?

A bifold door threshold is a track where the bottom of a bifold door slides along when operated. Both top and bottom tracks are necessary for smooth operation, even in top-hung doors. Level thresholds are an option, but there will still be a small rail for the door to move along. 

Threshold options include:

  • On-floor low-threshold sills provide a smooth floor that is slightly raised towards the tracks to protect against water ingress.
  • On-floor drainage sills are raised like a typical door frame.
  • Flush sills are completely flat on the floor and can be used when water leakage is not a concern. With a flush option, bifold doors create a smoother floor level, preferable for small children who may trip or for wheelchairs

Should Bifold Doors Open In or Out?

Bifold doors can open inwards or outwards, depending on where you are willing to lose floor space. If you want the best of both, then a center pivot option can also be available, depending on the door manufacturer. 

What Are The Most Common Problems With Bifold Doors?

  • View obstruction - Bi-fold doors have many frames, which is excellent when they're open, but the frames can obstruct the view once closed. Choosing a material like aluminum that allows for narrow frames is the best choice for limited obstruction. 
  • Drainage - One thing to keep in mind in a flush threshold is the compromise on waterproofing. Discuss drainage with your door expert.
  • Misalignment due to incorrect installation. Hiring a professional to adjust the doors can solve the issue. 
  • Sliding trouble may be caused due to dirt in the tracks or a lack of lubrication.
  • Locking issues may need additional oiling of the locking mechanism and key.

Are Bifold Doors Secure?

Bifold doors are generally secure and come with multi-point locking systems with the primary lock on the folding outswing door. You can install additional security with shoot bolts or flush bolts. Non-active panels lock into the head and sill of the door. 

Depending on the manufacturer, bifold door hardware varies. Over and above enhancing security, a sound locking system can improve weathertight seals.

Do Bifold Doors Add Value to Your House?

Yes! Bifold doors look neat and create an appealing opening in your home. Natural lighting improves your health, and with glass folding doors, there will be no shortage of this glorious health benefit in your home. 

If you're happy to spend money on multi-glazing, screens, shades, tempered glass with Low-E, SmartSun, and HeatLock coatings, then your home can remain at a comfortable temperature and prove to be an asset if you ever decide to sell. 

Ready to Shop For Bifold Doors? Call us!

When you're ready to shop for bifold patio doors, give us a call. We can provide you with advice on the best option for your opening while being able to offer expert input on maintenance, glazing options, locking mechanism, and materials that suit your home and budget.

Bifold or folding doors create a bold and expansive opening to the outdoors. If you have a home that glorifies social gatherings and outdoor living, bifold doors offer that perfect wall opening. When opened up, bifold doors give your home a generous airflow and uninterrupted views. They do this by concertinaing on a sliding track to the side of the room.

While bifold doors are popular for restaurants, more and more homeowners are selecting this superior door system. The cost of bifold doors may hurt a little, but these elegant and considered door systems may increase the value and appeal of your home. 

Keep in mind that bifold doors don't work in every home, and you may need to see what else is out there.

 

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