Bifold doors and sliding doors are the most popular door types for large opening sizes. When it comes to choosing the right door type for your renovation, extension or any other residential project, sometimes it can be difficult to make a decision between a bifold door or a sliding door. So, to make a right decision between a bifold door or a sliding door in your home, it’s important to understand the differences between them, as well as the key benefits and disadvantages of each door system.
The main feature of bifold doors is fully openable and a bifold door provides an openness up to 90% of aperture. Especially when structural opening is narrower, bifold doors are ideal choice for use.
A sliding door can provide opening between 50% and 65% of total structural opening. So it is a better choice for wider structural openings. Sliding doors are ideal for larger openings to really maximise the larger expanse of glass when closed.
Clear space for opening
Bifold doors require clear space for opening. An inward opening bifold door require some clear floor space in order to open. Similarly, you need some exterior space for an outward opening bifold door. However, a sliding door doesn’t need any interior or exterior space for opening because they run on the track and slides only back and forth on.
If the interior space is limited in your home or you don’t want to reserve any floor space for the door, outward opening bifold door or a sliding door is a better choice.
Sliding doors can provide more glass than bifold doors. So they provide better options if you are looking for uninterrupted view.
Thermal performance or energy efficiency
Sliding door has more glass less frame when comparing to bifold doors. Aluminium frame has lower thermal peformance comparing to glass. Therefore, sliding doors are more thermally efficient than bi-fold doors.
Ease of use
Both doors are easy to use. Especially, bifold doors with traffic doors are quite easy for use. A traffice door is like a casement door and can be quickly open and closed.
For small sizes, sliding doors and bifold doors have similar cost. But for larger apertures, sliding door can be more expensive because of large glass size and also difficult installation.
Which is better, bifold doors or sliding doors?
The answer differs depending on your project requirements. To make a right decision, you need to take many factors into account. If the aperture size is narrower and you want a fully openable door, bifold door is a better option. However, if you have a large structural apurture and you want to an unterrupted view, a sliding door can be a better option.