If you own an older style home, adding bi-fold doors is a great way to modernise the living area of your home. Bi-fold doors add an abundance of natural light, and they also give you the much-desired connection between your indoor and outdoor living spaces. If you're thinking about adding some bi-fold doors to your home, then there are two main things you'll need to consider.
1. The frame material
The two materials most commonly used for bi-fold door frames are metal and timber. Timber is often used because of the warm, natural beauty it provides, while metal frames are often seen as more resistant to weathering. However, with the right sealant timber can be equally durable and modern metal frames can be very attractive with the right surface treatment.
If you're torn between the two, then it's also possible to combine them both. Frames that are made from metal can have a thin timber veneer added to the internal face, giving you the look of timber on the inside coupled with the practicality of metal outside.
The material you opt for will largely be determined by your personal preferences and how the materials will blend in and complement the existing structure of your home. It's a good idea to visit a design showroom to see how both door types look up close before you make your decision.
2. The type of glazing
The large expanse of glass in bi-fold doors adds plenty of light but it can also mean extra heat loss or heat gain via the glazing at different times of the year. If you live in a region that experiences very hot summers or very cold winters, then the type of glazing you choose can make a big difference to your comfort level.
For a high level of insulation, double glazed bi-fold doors are the best option. The pocket of air between the two glass panes acts as an effective barrier against heat transference, which will keep the temperature of your home more comfortable and will reduce the amount of money you spend on heating and cooling.
If you live in a region that does not experience extremes of hot or cold, then double glazing might not be necessary. You can simply opt for single glazing that has a coating that reduces heat transference which is called low-E glass. This glass can also be used in conjunction with double glazing for even more significant insulative properties.