HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT BI-FOLD DOORS
Bi-fold doors have been skyrocketing in popularity these last few years, with many of our own customers seeking out these folding wonders, and it’s not hard to see why.
Interior and exterior designers think of bifold doors as a genuine luxury-level addition to a home. Once only for the rich and famous, bifold door prices have been coming down in recent years making them an increasingly affordable addition to a home.
Imagine being able to open up the back of your home so that your indoor living space and outdoor gardens became one beautiful, seamless area? If you’re lucky enough to live somewhere with a balcony overlooking your gardens and the wider countryside beyond, imagine being able to make the balcony part of an indoor/outdoor entertaining and chill-out zone.
Why have bifold doors become so popular?
There are three big reasons, in our opinion, that bifold doors are growing in popularity. The first is the unashamed stylishness of the way the doors look.
Homeowners who have had bifold doors installed in their property love the grandness they add to a room and there’s something very satisfying about the sleekness in how they move when you open and shut them.
If you’ve ever seen any of the episodes of “DIY SOS” or “Grand Designs” when the surprised homeowners see their newly renovated properties for the first time, they always seem to make a beeline for the bifold doors.
Second, the views. If you enjoy your garden or if you enjoy the wider views from a higher floor in your property, no other installation quite allows you to drink those views in like bifold doors. When they’re closed, bifold doors afford you a magnificent panorama of the outside. When they’re open and it’s a glorious day, the world outside becomes part of your living space not only by what you can see before you but by the sounds and smells of nature coming into your home.
Third, the integration between the indoors and the outdoors. Think of when you’ve been on holiday in the Mediterranean. Our European friends have the right idea about how to meld your private indoor space with the world around it. In the summer and on warmer days, bifold doors permit a continuity between your inner space and the need to enjoy the sun coupled with a gentle cooling breeze. In the winter, you don’t have to open your bifold doors fully to get outside – simply use the panel at the end which acts as a normal door when needed.
Let’s not leave out the other benefits:
You have options on the colours you can select for your bifold door panels.
If the environment is important to you, bifold doors provide your home with really energy efficiency.
You can save space too – speak with an installer about whether you want outward- or inward-closing doors.
Incredibly easy to clean and maintain. If you get marks on the windows (typical in any household with toddlers!), simply wipe it clean as you would another pane of glass. Every now and again, give the rail a light clean to make sure nothing gets stuck in there which might impede the opening and closing of the doors
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How much are bifold doors?
For the most popular uPVC bifold door installations, these are the price ranges you’d be looking at:
uPVC is the same material that most double-glazed windows are made from. Most installers will allow you to choose the colour you want the uPVC to be painted in – some even offer a wood-effect type paint.
Aluminium is the more expensive option, attracting a premium of around 20-25% on uPVC installations. Why choose aluminium over uPVC? Just as with uPVC, you can choose the colours and the effect you want your panels painted in. The advantage that aluminium bifold doors offer over uPVC bifold doors are the aluminium bifold door panels are slimmer meaning that you get to enjoy even more of the views with this option.
Bifold doors versus sliding doors
Sliding doors have seen a similar surge in popularity to bifold doors in the last few years. What are the differences between bifold doors and sliding doors?
With sliding doors, you’re not able to benefit from a full opening up of the room unlike with bifold doors. They generally tend to be more popular where space is a real concern because they don’t need space inside or outside in the same way that a bifold door does.
Sliding doors work out around 25% more expensive than bifold doors with aluminium frames.
Bifold doors planning permission
For the vast majority of homeowners, you will not need to seek permission from the local council to install bifold doors on your property.
Bifold doors will usually be considered a major alteration to your home and if you live in a listed building, a home in a conservation area, or a home under what’s known as an “Article 4 Directive”, you will almost certainly have to apply for planning permission.
How does that work? When you submit your planning permission application for your bifold doors installation, they will either give you permission, deny you permission, or allow you to resubmit certain to subject changes being made to your proposal.
Have we given you some food (or maybe some door) for thought? If so, why not talk about your options with our team? Our consultations are free for all homeowners, with our experts helping you get readying to transform your home.