Just Doors & Conservatories

How to Choose Bifold Doors for Your Home

So you’ve decided that you’d like to upgrade your home with a stylish new set of bifold doors – or maybe you’re just exploring the possibility – but what kind? There are lots of considerations to keep in mind about what kind of bifold doors will best suit your space and your lifestyle. In this post, we’ll guide you through how to choose bifold doors and what you’ll need to consider.

how to choose bifold doors

Configuration

Panels, sashes, leaves – you’ll come across these words while researching bifold doors, and they all basically mean the same thing: how many movable panes the door will be made up of. They can be anywhere from 2 to 7 panels in length, and can open in any way you choose.

Obviously, the larger the space you’d like your bifold doors to cover, the more leaves you will need, but it’s a bit more complicated than that.

The more panels you have, the larger the ‘stack’ of panels will be when you have your doors open. When they’re closed, more panels means more lines obscuring your lovely view. 

How do you want to open your doors? Think about which side of your space the stack of panels would be least intrusive on. If you want a high number of panels across a large area, you may even want them to open in the middle and stack half on either side of the opening.

You may also want to consider a traffic or lead door. This is when one panel of your bifold doors can operate independently of the others, opening and closing like a conventional door.

Traffic doors are a very popular option for spaces where bifold doors will be completely replacing access to the rear of a property. They are worth bearing in mind to ensure that upgrading to bifold doors does not hinder the practicality of your home.

Material

One of the most important aspects of the question of how to choose bifold doors. The material of your frames can completely change the appearance and feel of your doors.

The main choices available to you are uPVC, timber, and aluminium. Each has its advantages, and it’s worth considering all of the options.

uPVC frames are usually the cheapest of these options, as well as being the most common on the market. Many people are drawn to uPVC bifolds by the desire to match the finish of their pre-existing uPVC window fittings. However, the contrast provided by timber or aluminium finishes can, in fact, be very attractive.

Timber frames can give a lovely traditional feel to bifold doors and maybe the best choice if you’re looking to install them in a period property. However, they also require much more maintenance than the other two types, which is worth bearing in mind.

One of the main drawbacks of uPVC and timber is the necessary thickness of the frames, which can detract significantly from the view and cast intrusive shadows. Aluminium bifold doors, however, can have ultra slimline frames due to the superior strength of the material.

Cost

Many factors will affect how much your doors are going to cost. The more panels of glass you want, the larger your bifolds will be, and the cost will increase accordingly.

While it may seem obvious that the size of your doors will increase the price, it is important to remember that this will also increase the cost of installation. Don’t forget to account for labour costs and the cost of creating or widening an opening for your new doors.

The material of your doors will also affect the cost.

Although it may seem savvy to go for cheaper materials, remember that the price of top-line products such as aluminium bifold doors has dropped dramatically in recent years. Investing in quality means you will likely spend far less on maintenance or replacement later.

None of us wants to pay more than we have to, but when you’re making such a big investment in your home, it’s best not to compromise. Saving for an extra month or two to get the bifold doors that you really want, and that best suit your home, will almost always be the best option.