The Benefits of External Bifold Doors
External bifold doors are a great choice of patio door for your property. Not only are they often more attractive than most external door frames, they bring more light into the home. There are lots of reason why people opt for bifold doors as an alternative to regular doors and to make your buying decision that little bit easy we thought we’d put together a guide looking at what they could offer for your home.
The Top Five Benefits of External BiFold Doors
The immediate access to your garden or patio area is easily one of the main benefits of an external bifold door. If you host a lot of BBQ parties, you'll really appreciate the way the doors bridge the indoors and the outdoors.
Bifold doors are one of the ways to get the most natural light into your home without spending a small fortune. This will really help if your home feels a little drab and dark. Increased natural light is also good for improving the mood of you and your family.
Bifold doors are often wider than regular doors so on those hot summer days you will be the grateful of the opportunity to open the doors and let in that fresh cool freeze. Bifold doors are great for air conditioning and letting fresh air into the home.
The security offered by the multi-point locking system of the bifold door track is significantly more secure than the security offered by sliding doors or french doors.
Bifold doors take up significantly less space than competing styles of door when they are fully open due to the way the fold into one another. So if you're space is at a premium, they are always a smart option to consider. Their compact nature also makes them much more flexible.
Because bifold doors will primarily be made up of large glass panels, they are that much easier to clean, with the glass requiring little more than an occasional wash with a conventional detergent and cloth.
Bifold Doors VS Regular Doors
Whilst it's rare that a modern home will use a conventional swinging door as a rear door, older homes, especially smaller homes where space is at a premium, might use them, and they can be a quite appealing option due to their size and cost. However, rear doors in the modern world have widened significantly in the last 100 years. Primarily because we all have so much more social time now, and our rear doors act not only as secondary access points for the home, but as gardening gateways.
They're also awnings in which the family can sit and catch some rays on a summer afternoon, and portals through which we allow more light and warmth into our homes. As such, if you can afford the space, a plain, swinging back door simply won't cut the mustard with most modern homeowners. Bifold doors, in contrast, offer so much more in terms of their flexibility.
Bifold Doors VS French Doors
There's an undeniable classic beauty to French doors underlined by their namesake. The French population are known for being elegant, artistic and sophisticated and these are adjectives that could just as comfortably be applied to many French doors. They might be aesthetically pleasing (most of the time), but there are also significant drawbacks to consider.
Unlike bifold doors, for example, will generally only be made up from a couple of separate doors opening outwards, whereas bifold doors will be made up of multiple panels and will concertina either inwards or outwards and allow for a number of different configurations.
They are also more suitable where space is at a premium. The light that bifold doors will bring in to the home is also another reason to consider them over french doors. Whilst it's true that many French doors will be built with glass panels instead of wooden panels, this glass might be frosted and will not take up anywhere near as much surface area as the glass panels found in most bifold doors.
They could also add some significant value to your home due to the fact they are so much more desirable than French doors with their more svelte, modern aesthetic.
One of the few downfalls regarding using bifold doors is that the gaps in the glass can obscure a little of the view of your garden. Once folded back, however, they offer by far the best and most organic view and will give you more space in your garden, conservatory or patio and your adjoining room.
French doors, however, will give you even less window space, with larger gaps taken up by the building materials of the doors. Stylistically too, french doors might suit a more traditional home with their ostentatious stylings and designs, but in a modern home they could clash with a more subtle aesthetic.
French doors are, however, arguably more affordable than bifold doors, which is another reason why homeowners continue to choose them. They are also easy to install and remove, with none of the tracking hardware required for bifold doors. That being said, installing a bifold door is a lot simple than people might think.
Bifold Doors VS Sliding Doors
Sliding doors perhaps have more in common with bifold doors than traditional doors or French doors, so the positives and negatives are a little less simple to ascertain. There are many notable differences, however, that need to be addressed if you want to make an informed decision.
Security is the first major difference. Whilst sliding doors will look very similar, on the surface, they operate in a very different way, with the doors sliding behind one another to open up. This means that they are generally only secured in one place (on the lead door), whereas bifold doors operate on a multi-point locking system, so there is more of a backup.
The view you're afforded will also be not quite as expansive as it would be with external bifold doors, as the opening will never be fully open, with the doors needing to slide behind one another. The frames found in sliding doors will also often be a lot thicker, (in order to support the larger glass panels) and these thicker frames can look less attractive.
So, bifold doors will offer you a much wider and clearer opening and a multitude of options that you just wouldn't get with sliding doors. They can also be installed in more openings, with sliding doors generally not working in bay openings. One final positive to mention is the threshold. There will be no lip on a bifold door because of the track requirments. It should be completely flush with the floor, allowing for better insulation.
The one negative here is that you could trip over the tracking if you're in a rush, but as long as you're careful you should be golden! Ultimately, they both offer an attractive solution, but, for our money, bifold doors provide a flexibility and dramatic 'wow factor' that you simply won't get with any of the more conventional options.
As you can see, there are considerable upsides to adding some bifold doors to your home. Lots of these reasons are also why it's not such a bad idea to look at some internal bifold doors for your home too. If you would like to shop around then check out our external oak doors and external French doors for other options.