Bifold doors are normally placed on such rooms as laundry and storage rooms, or closets. These types of doors are sometimes placed between two often-used rooms in a house, such as between a family room and a dining room. Bifold doors have two individual door panels that are hinged together. The bifold door slides along an overhead track. How you replace your bifold doors will depend on where they are and how much space is available for the new doors.
Bypass doors use the same principle of sliding along an overhead track as bifold doors. Bypass doors are installed in pairs, and derive their name from the fact that they open by sliding past one another. This is different from bifold doors, whose panels fold together to open. Realize that with bypass doors, at least half of the door opening is always covered by the doors when they are opened, limiting your access into the room.
If space is not a worry, replace the bifold doors with a swinging door. A swinging door needs more space around it for it to be able to fully open and allow you access to the room. Instead of a track, like bifold doors use, a swinging door needs hinges installed on the frame and door.
Just as a bifold door conserves space by folding in half when you open it, an accordion-fold door saves even more space and allows you an even bigger open area to enter a room. An accordion door, which folds and interfolds, saves enough space for you to place additional furniture near the door, which you can't do with a swinging door. An accordion door is also a good idea if you want a temporary replacement to the bifold doors until you decide on a more permanent choice.
Reverse the Bifold Doors
If you are considering replacing the bifold doors because you find yourself frustrated by having to open them from the wrong side, simply reverse the bifold doors so that the door handles are now inside the room you use most often. To do this, you can't just place the handles on the opposite side of the doors. Push up on the doors and remove them from the overhead track and the bottom bracket. Remove the upper and lower brackets and reposition them on the opposite ends of the door, and reinstall the doors facing the opposite direction.
- Better Homes and Gardens New Complete Guide to Home Repair; Charlie Wing
- Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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