What you need to Know Before Installing Interior Bifold Doors

Interior bifold doors are a practical and economical choice for closets in small spaces. There’s a variety of finishes from which to choose, including wood veneer and glass doors.

Small areas such as a bedroom, entry or hallway usually don’t have enough room for closets with swinging doors. That’s where bifold doors are a practical alternative. Closest dimensions typically have openings of four, five or six feet. A bifold door is versatile as it has a right and a left section, which join in the center in an unfolding action. This allows for opening the door from either the right or left side.

The selection of bifold door styles are the same as with traditional swing doors, with the exception of the type of hardware needed. Bifold doors are available in the typical hollow core interior style, which makes them an economical and lightweight choice bifold doors. Durable and easy to install, bifold doors don’t have to be drab looking. Some hollow core styles include decorative features such as raised panels, which add a stylish touch. There is also a variety of wood veneers available such as mahogany, maple and oak.

Solid core bifold doors are another option. Although they cost more than hollow core doors, they can be a good investment if sound is an issue. The term “solid core” describes the core portion of the door, which is a solid piece typically comprised of manufactured or particleboard wood. Some solid core doors have a steel core. The veneer on solid core doors is similar to that on hollow core doors but more closely resembles the wood finish of swing solid wood doors. This makes it easy to match the style of existing swing doors in the home.

You may want to purchase casing or trim for the doors and consider adding a doorstop to your list. Casings, trim and doorstops are not included in the bifold door package. These can add extra cost to your project, but do provide a more professional and finished look. However, it’s not necessary to have these extras, especially if cost is an issue.

There are other uses for these doors besides closets. They’re very useful between rooms that don’t have doors and transition into other areas, such as into a living room or kitchen. It’s also easy to combine bifold doors, using two to make up one larger door.

It’s not difficult to install a bifold door and only a small number of tools are needed. The most expensive tool you might use will be a screw gun or power drill, but a manual screwdriver is sufficient. Of course, if you plan to add trim, there will be a bit more work and time involved. Adding casing, trim or a doorstop is an extra step. Bifold doors permit an unhindered view of the outsides and are the best choice, especially where space is at a premium. One may opt for single glazed bifold doors or for double glazed types. The latter is especially advantageous from energy conservation and acoustic insulation perspectives.

Regardless, one must consider the choice of blinds for bifold doors. Blinds are necessary when one wishes to cut out the light. One can opt for curtains as the easiest way to create privacy but curtains can impede the view when the doors are opened. Venetian blinds may be considered but these present their own set of problems. Adding blinds creates disharmony in the visual composition and mars looks especially when the doors are folded back. Operating such blinds can also be a bit of bother. External blinds also need to be cleaned and maintained. The solution is to opt for integral blinds in double glazed bifold doors. At one stroke all the issues are taken care of without hindering the convenience of blinds.

Instead of ordering double glazed bifold doors and then adding blinds as an afterthought it is wiser to order such doors with integral blinds for a neater, smarter and ergonomic solution that looks neat as well.

Manufacturers of quality bifold doors incorporate the blind into the glazing, fitting it neatly inside the frame so that it does not become an obstruction when one opens the door or gets in the way or gets tangled up and damaged in the process. The blinds are cut and precisely fitted inside the sectional frame to conform to the size of the glass glazing and the mechanism is neat and integrates well with the overall structure. Such integral blinds work smoothly and never get in the way of closing or opening the bifold doors.

In the case of double glazed bifold doors the solution to integrate the blind between the glass panels is even better because then, the blinds remain fully enclosed and never need cleaning. A magnetic system permits opening or closing of the blinds by the simple expedient of sliding an unobtrusive lever. There is no need for cord or rods. The look is much improved when blinds are sandwiched between the glass panels. From the health perspective too, enclosed blind prevent accumulation of bacteria and dirt, which is another reason to consider this type of blinds for doors and windows.

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