If you have a large patio or deck area off one room of the home, bi-fold doors can mean a larger opening than a standard sliding door wall. As a result, you will have less traffic congestion when hosting large groups at home and you'll have maximum air circulation as well. When you're ready to choose bi-fold doors for your home's exterior, note a few tips and factors to consider first. Discuss your choices with a contractor if needed, so you know you choose the best doors for your home.
1. First check building regulations
Your home's construction always falls under certain local regulations, and bi-fold doors may be no different. You may need to have a certain fire resistance to the door, protection from hurricanes and storms, and other such features, depending on your local area. A contractor can tell you if there are regulations that your home's bi-fold doors will need to meet, and what your choices are for frame, glass and the like.
2. Choose a higher threshold for weather guarantees
The threshold refers to the bottom part of the doorjamb, and for bi-fold doors, you may want to choose a higher or taller threshold in you live in an area with long winters, high humidity, or other inclement weather. The higher threshold can work as a better insulator against these weather conditions and will help keep out rain, snow, and the like. You might like the look of a flat, very unobtrusive threshold, but for maximum comfort in extreme weather conditions, invest in one that is higher and insulates better.
3. Measure the doors for width when opened
When you slide open your bi-fold doors, they will then jut into and out of the house. You need to measure the width of these doors to note if they will get in your way when they're fully open. In some cases you may need to choose doors with more panels or sections, so that each panel is then more narrow. When they are fully open and stacked, they won't jut out so far and won't be in your way.
If you prefer fewer panels because their frames don't block your view of the light, consider frameless sections or those with very thin frames around each panel. This will offer you a good view and will mean you don't need to invest in wide sections that will get in your way.