A Comparison of Different Wide Doors.

Doors have come a long way from simple entryways to rooms. Not only can they be beautiful,  just by opening and closing they can redefine the feel of a whole living space. As big open plan houses and gardens become increasing popular, big doors can be a way to separate the house, while keeping the freedom to open it up again. If you have an open house plan and want to still utilize doors, here are three main styles that you should consider. 

Bi-Fold Doors

Bi-fold doors are a very popular choice. The doors come in a set of panels each hinged together and running along rails on the floor. The panels lie flat when the door is closed, and collapse up like an accordion when the door is open. Each panel can lock into position independently, allowing many combinations for the doors. For instance with all but two panels locked into place, the doors act simply like normal doors, and are much more convenient to open and close. When it is time to open up the doors fully, by unlocking every panel the door is free to open up to the full range of the doorway. Because the panels can stack, when fully open they take up virtually none of the door way, as appose to stacking and sliding doors that require one panel to remain.

The main drawbacks are that each panel has to be hinged on all sides meaning a lot more framework is needed than the following types I will mention, and the doors can be chunkier to open and close than the others.

Sliding Doors

Sliding doors are glass panels inside a door frame, that open by sliding horizontally along rails at the top and bottom of the door. Traditionally, there is one fixed door and one sliding door, the sliding door overlaps the fixed door when open. They can cover decent sized doorways; however, they are much more limited than Bi-Fold and Sliding doors in the range of the doorways they can cover, as they can be made of, at most, two panels, where each panel's size is restricted by practical constraints.

Their simplicity, ease to open and close and lack of visible hinges make them a very popular choice for exterior doors, with a lot cleaner look than Bi-Fold doors.

Stacking Doors

Stacker doors are similar to sliding doors, where multiple sliding doors are employed and when opened the doors all overlap each other. A bit bulkier looking than sliding doors, as more rails are needed to allow for each door to overlap, they are unlimited in the range they can cover, making them ideal for doorways leading on to decks and patios. The doors can be opened to nearly the whole width of the door way, only limited by one panel size. Slightly worse in this regard than Bi-Fold doors, the lack of hinges on the sides of each panel mean the views offered from these doors and less interrupted than Bi-Fold doors.

Stacking doors, as with sliding doors, open and close very smoothly and a high ratio of glass to framework allows great views and more light to get into the room.