Can’t decide whether to choose aluminium bi-folding or sliding doors for your new extension? We look at the benefits of each to help you decide which is best for your home!

Think about your budget

If you are choosing the same style of aluminium frame, sliding doors will always come in more expensive due to the increased amount of glass required, with sliding doors typically come in up to 50% more expensive than bi-fold doors. So if you are restricted by budget then bi-folding doors are the best option.

For both bi-folding and sliding doors, be mindful of optional extra’s that can add to the budget including integrated blinds, solar glass, triple glazing, special coatings and anodized finishes.

Bi-folding doors by The Bi-Fold Door Factory

Bi-folding doors by The Bi-Fold Door Factory

Make the most of a good view all year round

With top of the range sliding doors typically allowing measurements of up to 3 metres in height and 3 metres in width, they allow the maximum view when your doors are closed – which is likely to be a large proportion of the year. So if you can’t decide between bi-folding or sliding doors, opt for sliding doors if you want to make the most of your view into the garden (and beyond) all year round!

Integrate your home and garden

One of the main advantages about bi-folding doors is being able to open up a wall of doors and integrate your home and garden. You will never have as full an opening with sliding doors as you would with bi-folding doors, which might be frustrating during the summer months.

Being able to open a whole wall of glass works particularly well with smaller spaces where you really want to extend your living space into the garden as much as possible, making your home feel much more spacious than it is.

Slimline sliding doors by Urban & Grey

Maximise your view into the garden. Slimline sliding doors by Urban & Grey.

Consider the size of your opening

If the space you have is less than four metres wide, then bi-folding doors are probably the best option. With openings of this size, bi-folding doors look much more impressive than sliding doors due to the larger opening, creating a real wow-factor and transforming the space completely.

Sliding doors are ideal for larger openings to really maximise the larger expanse of glass when closed.

Make sure you have the space to stack the doors

Although bi-folding doors allow you a clear opening, you still need somewhere to stack the doors. You can choose either outside or inside, but either way be mindful that they may provide an obstacle, particularly if you have young children running around. Stacking doors works well if you have a wall lying at 90° to your doors – that way they won’t get in the way.

In contrast, although sliding doors allow only a two-thirds opening, they don’t fold back and therefore save on the space either inside or outside of your home.

Bi-folding doors by IQ Glass

Integrate a small kitchen and garden, similar to these bi-folding doors by IQ Glass

If you want to find out more about sliding doors or bi-folding doors, then check out our expert advice articles!