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Bi fold door advice  >  Internal bifold doors  >  Internal bifold doors: materials, tracks, handles, installation, finishes and glazing

Internal bifold doors: materials, tracks, handles, installation, finishes and glazing

Internal bifold doors (also known as concertina doors or internal folding doors) are a great way to introduce more light and space into your interiors.

In this guide, you will find a brief overview of key aspects on internal bifold doors, including:

Internal bifold door materials

Timber internal bifold doors are designed to be fitted inside the home. uPVC and aluminium bifold doors are traditionally used as exterior doors, although some people decide to use them internally. In this section, you will find a brief overview of each material.

 

Timber

uPVC

Aluminium

Made for internal use

Yes

Unlikely

Unlikely

Maintenance

  • Requires little maintenance
  • Requires little maintenance
  • Requires little maintenance

Style

  • Offers the widest range of style
  • Can be varnished or painted
  • Looks cheaper than alternatives
  • Some finishes available
  • Has a distinct look
  • Comes in a range of powder-coated finishes

Glazing

  • Single glazed 4mm toughened safety glass
  • Compliant with European standards BSEN12150 and BSEN12600
  • If external—double glazing
  • If external—double glazing

Durability

Durable

Durable

Durable

Price

Low to mid-level

Mid-level

Most expensive

For a more in-depth look at each material and their pros/cons, visit our guide:

Internal bifold doors: timber vs uPVC vs aluminium

Benefits of wooden internal bifold doors

As seen in the table above, wooden internal bifold doors are a cut above those in other materials. In this section, we will look closer at the main benefits of wooden internal bifold doors.

  • Stylish—offers a contemporary look and feel
  • Durable and long-lasting—Vufold offers a 15-year guarantee on all its bifolds
  • Environmentally friendly—simpler manufacturing process compared to synthetic materials, meaning less carbon dioxide
  • More space—turn two rooms into one with bifold doors
  • Increased light—using bifolds with glass as a room partition invites more sunlight into both rooms
  • Designed for internal use—Vufold’s timber internal bifolds are designed specifically to be installed inside the home
  • Sound absorption—wood absorbs sound, which can help reduce noise levels

Internal bifold door tracks—top-hung vs bottom-rolling

Bifold tracks hold and guide the bifold door rollers, allowing the panels/doors to open and close. They consist of two sections: the main track and the guide track.

When researching bifold tracks, you will encounter two key terms, both relating to where the bifold door’s main track is located:

  • Top-hung (located in the frame head)
  • Bottom-rolling (bottom threshold of the frame)

You may also see references to ‘trackless systems’. A trackless system has no base track running across the floor of your room, and can only be used with top-hung bifolds.

 

Top-hung

Bottom-rolling

Pros

  • Smooth operation—top weight means less force is required to move along the track
  • Low-maintenance—highly unlikely that debris will collect in the upper track, so less maintenance is required
  • Lower threshold—the guide track is based at the bottom, which has a slimmer profile than the upper main track
  • Secure doors—doors cannot fall out of top-hung tracks
  • Requires slightly less support—bottom-rolling systems have their weight carried on the floor
  • Installation—fewer holes are needed in the guide track that is located in the frame head

Cons

  • Installation—the main track of bifolds must be securely fastened over the full length of the door set—this requires drilling holes upwards, which can be awkward
  • Blockages—debris and small items can jam the main track at the lower part of the door set
  • Maintenance—to stop blockages, you will regularly need to clean the bottom track
  • Track dipping—if the main bottom track isn’t perfectly level, the track can dip. This can disrupt operation and cause the doors to fall out of the guide track
  • Higher threshold—bottom-rolling systems have a higher threshold at the bottom of the door step. This is a trip hazard and is much harder to install flush.

To find out more about internal bifold door tracks, including FAQs, visit our guide:

Internal bifold door tracks: types, hardware and FAQs

Types of internal bifold door handles

While handles might be one of the last aspects you consider for your bifold doors, they still play an important role. Most internal bifold door handles fall into four main categories:

1. Lever handles

  • Often used on the lead door
  • Common type of handle
  • Simple mechanism

2. Pull handles

  • Used to pull bifold doors towards you in order to close them
  • Numerous designs but most of them are D-shaped
  • Folds flat against the door so the doors can concertina closely together to take less space

3. Door knobs

  • Another common type of handle
  • Available with two types of latches:
    • Tubular mortice latch—similar to a lever handle, except you twist to retract the latch
    • Roller latches (ball catches)—simple pull or push to open and close the door

4. Flush handles

  • Used for wardrobes or pantries rather than proper bifold doors
  • Recessed flat or flush into the door
  • Also known as a flat handle

To find out which handle is best for your internal bifold door, visit our guide:

Internal bifold doors handles: types, positions and best handles

Installation

All bifold doors are different and require a different installation process. Always ensure that you follow the instructions closely for a successful installation.

The following step-by-step process is designed to give you a broad overview of what you can expect when installing bifold doors:

  1. Prepare the opening
  2. Choose left or right opening
  3. Assemble the frame
  4. Install assembled frame
  5. Fit top and bottom pivot hinges
  6. Hang the doors
  7. Fit draft seals to the doors and frame
  8. Fit the drop bolts
  9. Fit the mortice latch
  10. Adjust the door
  11. Fit the door holders to the doors

Colours/finishes

Vufold offers a variety of finishes for interior and exterior doors:

Internal bifold door colours

All Vufold’s interior folding doors are made from timber. They are available in two finishes:

  • White - fully finished in a durable PU paint and ready for installation.
  • Unfinished oak - allows you to add your own finish. You can stain, varnish or paint them.

External bifold door colours

  • Black
  • Grey
  • Grey/oak
  • Grey/white
  • Oak
  • White
  • White/oak

Glazing options

  • Clear
  • Frosted

Clear allows light and visibility between the 2 rooms

Frosted; gives you privacy when the doors are closed whilst allowing light to pass though

Bespoke made-to-measure options

Vufold sells made-to-measure internal bifold doors. Simply fill in our custom form or talk to use via the live web chat (bottom right of this page). After you answer some simple questions, we will be able to send a quote for a bespoke door in a matter of minutes.