How to Convert Bifold Doors Into Swing Out Doors

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How to Convert Bifold Doors Into Swing Out Doors
Image Credit: Jupiterimages/PHOTOS.com>>/GettyImages

Things You'll Need

  • Level

  • Mending plate

  • Drill

  • Screws

  • 1-inch-by-3-inch board

  • Magnetic door closing mechanism

Bifold closet doors allow you to see the entire closet contents when opened, but you lose out on using the back of the door for storage. By locking bifold doors into a straight position that won't bend, you can turn bifold doors into swinging doors. You can then attach hooks or bars to the back side of the closet doors for additional storage. The project requires only a few pieces of hardware and about an hour of work.

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How to Turn Bifold Doors Into Swinging Doors

Fortunately, you can convert bifold doors to hinged doors. Prehung bifold closet doors need to be removed and then to undergo some basic modifications in order to stop folding when you open and close them. Once they are stiff, you can add hinges to them if you like so they swimply swing out.

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Step 1: Remove the doors

Remove both doors by lifting up toward the top pivot spring. Allow it to compress so the bottom comes out of the connection point. Lower the top portion of the door out of the top pivot spring.

Step 2: Remove the rollers

Remove the top roller from the doors. You won't need them going forward since the door will swing open instead of sliding on the track. Leave the top and bottom pins that hold the door into the brackets at the outer edges of the door. This is how you will keep the door in place once you are done with the modifications.

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Step 3: Check doors with a level

Place the bifold doors on a flat surface with the back side facing up. Place a level across both parts of the door to ensure it's flat.

Step 4: Use a mending plate

Position a mending plate 3 inches from the top of the door so the plate is placed evenly on either side of the crack where the door folds.

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Step 5: Drill holes for screws

Drill through the screw holes on the mending plate to make pilot holes.

Step 6: Add screws

Place screws in the holes and secure them with a drill to hold the mending plate in place. Install two additional mending plates, one in the middle and one about 3 inches from the bottom of the door. The three mending plates hold the door straight securely from top to bottom.

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Step 7: Add the doors back on

Place the doors back on the brackets by positioning the top pin back into the top bracket. Press up hard enough to allow the bottom pin to slide into the bottom bracket.

Step 8: Cut a board

Cut a 1-by-3-inch board to fit the width of the door opening.

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Step 9: Attach the board

Screw the board into place along the top edge of the closet opening to create a stop for the new swinging doors.

Step 10: Attach a magnetic closure

Attach a magnetic door closing mechanism to the top corner of each door. Attach the other part of the mechanism to the board on the closet opening. This holds the doors closed so they won't swing open on their own since they are no longer held in place with the top rollers.

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