Bi-folding doors are a popular item these days, but we all know that when it comes to structural components of a home not just anything will do. Every piece of your door matters, from the material to the frame to the hinges. Whether you’re looking to add one to the patio, a closet, or wherever else you might think they fit in the home you’re going to want to make sure you’ve got only the best.
We’d be completely remiss to not point out the best option: 2FoldDoors produces bespoke doors of the highest quality and finest engineering. They really are the best option if you’re looking to add one to your home.
Basically, if you want to the best of the best and you’re willing to pay for it… then they’re the only real option in front of you. On the other hand, it’s a steep price and if you’re not on an ultra-high budget it may make sense to go with something a little bit less extravagant.
Top 5 Bi-Folding Doors
|1||2 Fold Doors||Bespoke||Check Price|
|2||Closet Door, Bi-fold||24”-36”x80”-84”||Check Price|
|3||Bi-fold Door, Louver Panel Plantation||24”-36”x80”||Check Price|
|4||Pinecroft 852726 Traditional Divided||24-36”x80”||Check Price|
|5||Spectrum VS3280K||24”-36”x80”||Check Price|
1. Ultra High-End Bespoke Bi-Fold Doors
2 Fold Doors
When it comes to exterior folding doors, the best option are always going to be custom models. 2 Fold Doors takes things to the next level, utilizing only the best materials and backing it up with superior engineering.
This all comes with a cost, of course, and it’s a steep one. They really are the best of the best, but the doors start at around $5,000, which is no small fee.
On the other hand, we’re hesitant to even use the word “custom” to describe their advanced and handcrafted doors. They’re a wonder to behold, look as good open as they do closed, and the hardware they use is second to none.
Longevity, durability, looks, and all of the rest come in easily with these doors.
Pros and Cons
- Ultra-high quality materials
- Unique engineering for the best of the best
- Fully customizable
- Steel framing in order to make thinner, less present frames
- Literally nothing else
2. Best Folding Closet Door
Closet Door, Bi-fold, 6-panel Style Solid Wood
If you’re looking for a door for your closet with a unique, rustic look and an affordable price… then this is what you’ve been looking for. The door itself comes in with a nice wood-grain finish and excellent hardware to keep it working smoothly with only minor maintenance needed.
They also work great across other rooms when paired, allowing for the sealing off of entryways which are too large for a normal door.
When you pick one of these up, you’ll also get all of the hardware included. This makes it all worth it in the end, especially for the budget price.
The only real problem is they’re not all that thick, which makes the sound insulation relatively minor. It’s a pretty small problem overall when you consider the look and excellent included hardware however.
Grab one of these doors for your closet and you’ll fall in love. They’re cheap, easy to install, and the purchase is a one-stop for those who aren’t comfortable finding their own hardwre.
Pros and Cons
- Comes with all of the necessary parts
- Rich wooden look
- Easy folding hinges
- Variety of sizes
- Wood is fairly thin, limiting insulation of heat and sound
- Panels aren’t very far raised
3. Best Folding Interior Door
Bi-fold Door, Louver Panel Plantation
With a nice “blind” styled top and excellent wood grain on both sides, these make some of the best interior doors around. Paired up you’ll be able to cover quite a bit of space and they’re definitely priced right for the average homeowner.
Even better: they stain relatively easily so that you can make them match your overall home décor without any problems.
We just about fell in love with the look of these doors, but you really can’t expect them to serve as great insulation due to the tops. Give them a shot if you want a more casual interior divider and you’ll be in good hands.
Apart from the lack of insulation, these bi-fold doors make some of the best interior dividers that can be found without getting into custom models. The 80” size will fit in most homes, and the ability to color them and maintain the wood grain puts them a step above the competition.
Pros and Cons
- Stainable wood grain
- All hardware included
- Smooth and unique look
- Works well for all interior usage
- Lets sound and air through easily
- A bit hard to install for amateurs
4. Best Folding French Doors
Pinecroft 852726 Traditional Divided Glass French Bifold
French doors are a uniquely attractive item, and being able to quickly and easily find them in a bi-fold arrangement has obvious applications in the right home.
The glass makes for a great informal space divider contained within your home, although you’ll obviously still be able to see through them. They’re also ready to paint right out of the box, no primer needed.
The company who sells them also does a fantastic job at packaging. It was securely wrapped and we can’t see anyone having problems with the glass breaking if they buy them online. That’s definitely a load off for the average consumer.
While the style definitely isn’t for everyone, we think they make a beautiful finish to the end of a hallway and a pair of them is just right for the job.
They are a bit on the expensive side for mass produced doors, but we think the cost is well justified.
If you’re a big fan of French doors for the interior of your home, then we think this is probably the best shot you’ve got without spending thousands of dollars. Snap them up before the company realizes what they’re actually worth.
Pros and Cons
- Can be stained or painted if the unfinished model is bought
- French-style doors for the interior
- Comes with excellent hardware
- Company does a great job with the shipping
- Expensive for mass produced doors
- Not great for privacy
5. Best Spectrum Folding Door
Spectrum produces these fantastic accordion style doors which can expand and contract to fit a wide variety of different spaces by having an impressive number of panels attached to them.
The main advantage of this type of door is that they’re remarkably easy to install. Even if you’re not the type who’s skilled with tools you should have your doorway covered in a jiffy.
Unfortunately, the same qualities which make them easy to install also make them not much of a barrier. They’re best as privacy barriers rather than something to impede progress through the home or shut off a room entirely.
That said, there’s something amazingly pretty about these and we feel like the oak finish is definitely the best of the lot when it comes to aesthetics.
If you’ve been looking for an accordion style door, then pick up these. Spectrum continues to make the best of the best in this realm and that’s not going to change anytime soon.
Pros and Cons
- Accordion style doors
- Fits in a wide variety of different spaces
- Super easy to install
- Can be cut to size for smaller areas
- Lightweight means terrible insulation
- Not the most durable doors on the market by any means
So Just What is a Bi-fold Door?
Not everyone can afford the investment in a super high-end custom door, however, and if you’re willing to settle for mass production models we’ve also taken the time to review several of them and figure out which are the best. So, read on. We’ll introduce you to our favorite, show you some of the best options on the market, and then help you decide what the best option is for your home and budget.
Chances are that if you found your way here you know what one of these doors is. If not, you’ll want to read carefully because the right one can add quite a bit of convenience to your life.
Essentially, bi-fold doors are a series of panels which fold down to a manageable size in order to open an area.
They’re commonly used in closets, patios, and other areas which are more cordoned off than being a separate area altogether.
Due to their construction, the most common usage for them in a modern home is to section off an area where a wider doorway is desirable. Modern innovations have also made high-end glass panels a possibility for exterior doors, allowing you to see out the patio with even less obstruction than standard sliding doors.
Location, Location, Location
Where your door is located determines the best material, size, and… well, pretty much everything about the door. It’s the biggest reason that we recommend finding someone to build you a custom option, but if you’re looking at mass produced options then you’ll need to give it some thought.
One of the latest trends in home design has been folding patio doors. They’re an excellent departure from the usual sliding glass affair and many have found they’re great for both airing out the house and creating a less drastic transition between indoors and outdoors.
We don’t think of it so much as a fad as the technology finally catching up with the wants of the public at large.
Outdoor folding doors will have either an aluminum or wooden frame for the most part, and which you go with will depend largely on the styling of your home as a whole. You should avoid the temptation to use natural timber in these instances: bi-fold doors take a lot of stress from wind in most areas, and engineered timber has a more consistent strength than natural wood.
Of course, the best material for these frames is steel, but they’re only used by a select few custom door craftsmen since it’s a much harder material to work with.
Folding closet doors and the like can be made from a much wider variety of materials since they won’t be exposed to the elements. Exotic materials can be used when a custom craftsman is responsible, but for the most part you’re going to have some simple engineered wood choices.
Our recommendation is to go with something custom for exterior doors and see what the mass produced world holds for you when it comes to the interior ones.
Number of Panels
The number of panels which go into the construction of a folding door can be pretty considerable. For instance, Spectrum folding doors are famous for taking up only as much room as a normal door but having an accordion-like design.
The space given will be a big factor, but the more sections you have spread across a doorway the less space the door will take up when it’s been folded down all the way.
Exterior doors are where this sort of thing gets a little bit trickier, but the general rule is three panels.
As a general rule, you’re kind of stuck with what you can find and unless you’re spending serious money, you’re probably going to want to trust your craftsman in the case of a custom door.
For glass doors, there’s one thing that a lot of people don’t give much thought to but really will help decide the final look.
It’s especially important for glass doors leading to the exterior.
Timber looks good with older homes, but you need to be careful about your selection due to the forces a door can be put under with the weather. Engineered woods are probably the best you’re going to find, making for a consistent strength that can be judged with virtually a zero chance of things being catastrophically off.
On the other hand, metal frames make for a modern look. Aluminum is the main metal used, and generally the goal with glass folding doors is to make sure that you’re able to see out as much as possible.
High-end doors will end up using steel framing. It can handle weather and other structural issues with a very small amount of material and properly formed can create a glass door with an amazingly clear view.
For interior doors it generally doesn’t matter as much, since most of them are fully wooden in their construction.
The Smooth and the Rough
There’s one big factor which separates the good from the great when you’re installing one of these doors: the hardware.
Folding door hardware can be remarkably generic or it can be truly top notch. The generic stuff is fine for most people, and with a little bit of adjustment you can get a remarkably smooth door. We’ll cover how to fine tune your doors in just a moment, but first there’s the issue of custom-made doors.
While almost any contractor with access to a workshop can probably assemble a good door for you, the best manufacturers specialize in folding doors and can create them in such a way that they slide open as smooth as silk. It’s really the main reason they’re so much more expensive than any sort of premanufactured doorway.
The hardware generally comes in either top-running or bottom-running varieties.
Top-running systems do require a strong enough beam to find out and support the whole assembly, which can be somewhat limiting depending on the structural qualities of the wall or sliding door that you’ll be replacing for exterior doors.
It’s rarely an issue with interior doors, since the exterior frame of closets or whichever other type of door you’re working with should already be reinforced enough.
Top-running systems are generally favored for exterior doors, since there’s no way for leaves, grass, or other large debris to interrupt the workings with everything topside.
On the other hand, bottom rolling hardware does exist and it can be awesome for interior folding doors. It’s something to avoid when you’re slapping things up outside, however, due to the aforementioned problems.
There’s one other quality of the hardware you need, however. The ability to adjust things easily and quickly is crucial to the longevity of your bi-fold door.
Working With Your Bi-Folding Door
Things change shape over time, especially since the vast majority of homes are constructed with wood and other materials which can warp and change their properties with moisture, temperature, and the usual things which go on.
A good bi-folding door will allow you to quickly fix things in the event that you start to get jams or other problems going on.
That means the savvy homeowner is going to have to pick up some maintenance skills in order to keep things as smooth as the day the door was installed.
Sometimes your folding door is going to stick. This is probably the simplest fix you’ll be able to make, since pretty much all you’ll need is a screwdriver.
Close the door and take a look along the top alignment of things. If it’s off, even by a tiny amount, it’s enough that you’re going to have trouble and if you don’t fix it, it’s only going to get worse over time.
The top pivot bracket is usually the problem. Loosen the set-screw, which is located in the center of the bracket, and move the door back and forth until you’re completely parallel with the track. Hold the bracket in place and then you can simply place the set-screw all the way back down and you’re going to be good to go.
You may also have trouble with the bottom bracket, which you can fix in much the same way.
As long as your tracks are true, this should solve your problem entirely.
Binding on Carpet
This is mostly an issue with mass produced doors, but it’s pretty simple to solve as long as you have the doors.
What’s going on is the fact that your door is too tall for the place you have it. The easiest fix: remove the door, mark things off about ¼” to ½” above the highest point on the carpet and trim it with a table saw or circular.
This should handily solve the issue, just make sure to re-true the pivot brackets when you’re done.
Remember to sand the bottom when you’re done for the best results.
Loose knobs tend to be produced by… well, things coming loose. If you have a knob that’s frequently coming unscrewed you may want to try adding epoxy to it the next time you screw it down.
Just apply it with the brush that comes with it and screw it down tight. Remove any excess with a cloth while it’s still wet.
If you have any dry left it can be removed with a little bit of acetone and careful application with a cotton swab.
If you’re a bit… energetic… when you close your door, this is going to be a problem you encounter over time. Far more than just cosmetic damage, this can cause things to begin to fall apart quickly and the door will begin experience problems since the hardware isn’t being held properly.
The easiest fix is going to be to use a bracing system. You can find them at pretty much any home supply store, and once applied they’ll usually fix the problem.
Keep in mind you may need to carefully trim things to make the brace sit flush with the rest of the door but you should definitely try to go without doing it first.
Exterior doors may require more specialized attention, however, which is why we recommend making sure you’ve got only the best when you’re setting things up for your patio.
Our Serious Recommendation: Bespoke Folding Doors
We recommended the company at the beginning of our guide, and they really are the best in the business. 2 Fold puts their all into every aspect of their doors, and there’s a reason that we use the term bespoke as opposed to custom when we’re talking about their doors.
Their doors really are something special, but they’re not for everyone.
The main reason for this is the price tag: 2 Fold starts their pricing at about $5000. It sounds steep, but you really are getting more than you’ll get anywhere else.
The frames on the doors are constructed especially for the interior and the exterior. The exterior portions of their door frames are made of steel. This keeps them minimal and still stronger than your average aluminum door.
The interiors of their doors are often framed with Acoya wood. It provides great insulation, and looks fantastic. The difference here is definitely in the details.
The company exclusively uses Brio hardware. It’s expensive stuff, but it provides a smooth and long lasting experience by ensuring that you don’t have to worry about corrosion for years to come.
Even the glass which goes into these doors comes out as a superior product. The energy efficient glass used in the process provides incredible heat insulation by making sure there’s space between the panes.
It also offers superior insulation from exterior sounds, while also allowing for more privacy than you’ll be able to find with normal glass.
2 Fold uses concealed, slim, but secure locks. Their locking mechanism will lock the doors solidly against intrusion at both the top and the bottom.
Even better, the whole thing is controlled with a single lever.
The biggest thing about 2 Fold’s bespoke process is this: as the customer, you’ll be in control.
After all, the door is being engineered for your usage, which means that you’re going to be able to customize things exactly to your liking by the end of the process.
That doesn’t mean you should ignore their advice if it differs to your plans, of course, but this is a door which is being constructed to your exact specifications and not just churned out. Hand-made quality is something that you can trust, and the right door will leave you amazed.
If you’re interested in snapping one of their doors up, we strongly recommend you contact them through their website or by telephone.
If you need to think on the decision, well, take your time. They’re the best in the business and they’re not going anywhere anytime soon.
Whether you want to get something utterly modern and top-of-the-line, or you’re looking to pick up a drop-in for your closet it definitely makes sense to ensure that you have the best bi-folding doors around. Exterior doors can make an enormous difference in your life, and the ones you stick in your closet can make a big difference in your quality of life so don’t hesitate in making arrangements to get the best things possible for your home.