Ways to Hide Bilco Doors


Bilco doors are a brand of trap door, or hatchway, that leads into an underground area, such as a basement. While many homes come with such doors as an alternative method of basement entry, these metal doors are often unsightly, particularly once they begin to rust from prolonged exposure to the elements. Use creative methods of hiding these doors, including environmentally-friendly methods such as planting trees and shrubs.


  • Use wood fencing or wire fencing with plastic mesh woven in to hide bilco doors. Wood fencing is the more attractive of the two options and can be painted, whereas little can be done to decorate plastic mesh wire fencing. Use fencing in front of the door only, or use fencing around the perimeter of the door. If you decide to cover the perimeter with fencing, use one side of the fence as a door. Paint the fencing a solid color, or use multiple colors to paint each individual panel. Create designs, such as flowers or even whole landscapes on your fencing, or use paint to create assorted patterns.


  • Another environmentally-friendly option for hiding bilco doors is tall shrubs. Plant shrubs around the entire perimeter of the door, but save some walking space so you can get to the door. Use one type of shrub only to create continuity, or plant multiple shrub varieties, including flowering shrub options. Plant shrubs in straight lines, or create wavy patterns all around the door.


  • Look for fast-growing trees that are also bushy in nature, such as birch trees, pine and spruce trees to hide your bilco doors. Another advantage of planting spruce and pine trees around your bilco door perimeter is that they are evergreen, meaning their leaves will not fall off once cold weather hits. Using trees that do change with the seasons means your bilco door will be more visible during winter months.


  • A cheaper method of hiding bilco doors than having fencing installed is wooden screens. Simply look for unpainted wooden screens, such as those you would use in the home to divide rooms, that can withstand the elements. Bury the screens about a half foot to a foot deep in your lawn to avoid screens blowing away and causing damage to your property as well as your neighbors' properties. As with wooden fencing, you have the option of painting the screens, including creating assorted designs and patterns.

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