Patio Doors, Bifolding Doors or French Doors - How to Decide

Are you trying to decide between French Doors, patio doors or bifolding doors? For most home improvements, the back of the house is where choosing the right door is very important.

Choosing between French Doors, patio doors or bifolding doors.

The most common choices in doors for the rear of your home are French Doors, patio doors or bifolding doors. What are the benefits of each type of door for your home?

One of the deciding factors in choosing between French Doors, patio doors or bifolding doors is whether you fit these doors to a new or an existing opening.

For new extensions, you have the advantage of creating your opening to suit your doors making a big door opening possible for bifolding or sliding doors. There is no reason why you cannot choose French Doors as well with expansive side panels as well. The thing to bear in mind is that your structural opening will largely determine the type of door.

The best doors for existing openings.

  • Smaller openings are ideal French Doors.
  • Older style patio doors can be replaced with new bifolding or latest generation sliding doors.
  • Consider knocking out the brickwork of an existing large window to create a bigger opening to fit doors instead.

The best doors for new openings.

  • Newly built openings give you total flexibility in door design.
  • Opens up more bifolding and sliding door options.
  • You can even create new wall pockets for sliding doors that disappear into the wall or a corner door option.
  • Create picture or gable windows above your doors for even more light and visual effect.

What to consider with Aluminium French Doors.

Aluminium French doors are still a good choice in the home and should not be regarded as dated or inferior to bifolding or sliding doors. In fact, if you live in a larger property with more than one doorway to your garden or outside space, French doors can work very well alongside bifolding doors. Our Origin doors use the same profile on their French doors as they do in their bifolding doors giving you matching doors throughout - something most other brands cannot provide.

  • French doors can open in or out.
  • Low thresholds are available for easy access.
  • Aluminium French Doors give bigger sizes than PVCu and don’t need costly sidelights or toplights.

A quality aluminium French Door can still give you impressive openings. It is possible to make aluminium doors fit within a typical 2400x2300 structural opening as one door set. In aluminium, French Doors can go up to 2200mm high or bigger if needed as well as door leaves of over 1100mm wide too.

What to consider with Aluminium Sliding Doors.

When compared to bifolding doors or French doors, aluminium sliding doors have two significant advantages. The first is that no other door gives you the glass sizes of sliding patio doors. With door panels available up to 9 square metres with most quality systems, if you want the biggest glass walls and the maximum amount of light, sliding doors are perfect.

The other advantage of sliding doors is they slide on a track and do not rely on hinges. This makes sliding doors ideal where you do not want the open door to encroach on your inside or outside space when hinged or folded open. If you have a small patio, a balcony or simply want to make the most light and big glazing, sliding patio doors are for you.

  • Perfect for creating the biggest sized doors with maximum glass.
  • Sliding doors cannot be caught by the wind when open.
  • Available from two up to six panels.
  • Choose simple inline sliding doors or the latest lift and slide.
  • Sophisticated rollers make big doors effortless to slide.

What to consider with bifolding doors.

For many people, the bifolding door is the ultimate showpiece door for their home. Also known as concertina doors, accordion doors, slide and fold doors or bi-fold doors, these precision made doors offer your home something special.

The biggest advantage of bifolding doors is how they can open up your entire structural opening, have floor levels in and out that are level and create a great transition from the inside to the outside of your home.

  • Two two eight door panels available.
  • Can fold in or out, slide to the left or the right.
  • Available with standard or flush thresholds.
  • Traffic doors made bifolds useable all year round.
  • Can be provided with gable or large windows above the doors for extra light.
  • Look great when combined with a lantern roof.

Which is best? A patio door, a bifolding door or French Doors?

Your home, budget and own tastes will determine what type of door is best for your home. French doors will ultimately be the most affordable with sliding doors being a little cheaper typically than a bifolding door.

Bifolding and sliding doors are often compared, so we suggest you visit our showroom and have a look at these impressive large doors side by side. You may find yourself wishing for a bifolding door but discovering a sliding door may be more suitable for you.

At Open Living we specialise in transforming all types of homes with our premier range of sliding, folding and French doors. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation.

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