Bi-folding Doors or Sliding Doors: Which is Right for Me?When it comes to providing ‘wow factor’, glazed doors are hard to beat. They flood your rooms with natural light and provide wonderful views from the comfort of your own home.
Customers frequently ask if bi-folding doors or sliding doors are best for their property. It’s a difficult question as the answer depends on a number of factors and your own circumstances. To help you make an informed decision, take a look at our guide below.
Bi-folding doors tend to be more versatile when it comes to access. Most configurations give you the option of a ‘traffic door’, which allows you to come and go as you please without opening all the panels up.
Also, the construction of bi-folding doors mean they are better at creating a level threshold between the floor and the outside. This means it’s easier to come and go as there is no ‘lip’ to obstruct movement.
Sliding doors are a popular choice when space is limited though as (unlike bi-folds) they don’t require the extra room to manoeuvre inside or outside your property.
Bi-folding doors are constructed of separate panels that fold together when closed. On the other hand, the larger glass panes of sliding doors fit behind one another if opened.
Because sliding doors use less framing, they are generally a better choice for those who prefer an uninterrupted view. However, sliding doors do not provide a 100% opening unless they slide into a pocket while bi-folds offer a full view of your surroundings.
Thermally speaking, glass is always the strongest point of the door while frames are the weakest. As sliding doors have less framing, they are more thermally efficient than bi-folding doors.
Sliding door profiles tend to be thicker too so are better at keeping the heat in.
Overall, there are more options available to you for building your ideal bi-folding doors. Not only can you choose the amount of panels (depending on space available) but also whether they’re stacked to the left, right or split each side.
Bi-folds can open inward or outwards while sliding doors only open sideways. Finally, a traffic door will give you access without the need to open out the rest of your bi-folding doors’ panels.
The common assumption is that bi-folding doors are more expensive. Bi-folds are separated by individual door leaves and each one may cost £1000 on average. In comparison, sliding doors do not traditionally require much customisation so final cost can be between £1500 and £2000 for the whole unit.
Bear in mind there are many variables at play and final cost will boil down to each individual project. For example, if you need larger doors, the sliding option has the potential to become very expensive. This is because big, single panes of glass will add significantly to the final bill.
Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference. Want to fully open the doors to the outside? Bi-folding doors may be your ideal choice. But if space is limited then sliding doors could be just what you need.
Whichever type of door you choose, picking the right supplier and installer is key to getting the best results. If you have any further enquiries, contact the knowledgeable team at SWR.