Fitting Guide for Bifold Doors
Home improvements can help to transform your living space and give it a new lease on life. Unfortunately, this usually comes at a price.
Investing in high-quality materials will not only look better, but it will also stand the test of time. This is undoubtedly true of bifold doors.
One great way to reduce the cost of home improvements is by carrying out installations yourself.
This should only be an option if you have the skills and experience to perform the job well.
Poor installations can severely reduce the lifespan of different products, and it may even void the warranty.
If you want to install bifold doors, look at the guide below. We've detailed the tools and essentials required for installation. We've also provided a universal step-by-step bifold door installation guide.
Bifold Door Installation Considerations
Installing bifold doors can make a big difference to how bright your home is and how well it flows. External doors will give you far greater access to your outdoor living space and let lots of natural light into your home.
Internal bifold doors give homeowners greater flexibility when dividing spaces. They can help to separate rooms or be opened up for an open-plan style.
Bifold doors aren't the most complicated installations you might face. However, there are still some important considerations that must be made before you begin. These include:
Not all bifold door installations will require planning permission, but some might.
External bi-folding doors may need planning permission in certain circumstances:
- When you have to widen the door opening.
- The door opening must be able to support the door weight. Checking your plans to meet building regulations is essential.
- You will likely need planning permission if you plan on creating an entirely new door opening.
- Listed buildings or those in conservation areas will typically require planning permission to replace or install a new bi-folding door system.
The property's condition will also determine how simple an installation will be.
Internal brickwork surfaces must be level, and the lintels must be in good condition before work begins.
You may be able to install the doors, but do you have the experience to know whether the property is in good enough condition to continue?
Your measurements will be essential to install a bifold door system correctly.
This might seem obvious, but taking the time to double-check the width and height will ensure no mistakes are made.
You will have to factor in the size of the door frame, fittings and the track that will also be installed when choosing your bi-fold door sizes.
Never overestimate your abilities. If you have any doubts, you are advised to get a professional installation.
If you are trying to save money by installing bifold doors yourself, consider the cost of replacing them if it isn't done correctly.
How To Install Bifold Doors
What You Will Need
Being well-prepared will make a big difference to how well the job goes. Tools, materials, and safety equipment are advised for installing internal and external bifold doors.
- Tape measure
- Drill driver
- 2mm and 5mm wood drill bits
- Screwdriver – electric or manual, or opt for a drill driver
- Rubber mallet
- Step ladder
- Spirit level
- Silicone sealer
- The door components
- Bi-fold doors, including track and fixings
- Door fixtures such as the knob and locking mechanism
- Safety goggles when drilling
- Dust mask
Step-By-Step Guide On How To Install External Bifold Doors
Follow the steps below to install your bifold doors securely:
Step 1 - Prep
Preparing the site for installation is essential. This will include levelling brickwork and ensuring your measurements are correct.
Having all the tools and materials ready before you begin will make this a more straightforward job.
Check the door components are all present before beginning.
Step 2 - Put the door frame together
It would be best if you now put the door frame together. This can be done in two sections before joining them together. Attach the door jambs and fix the sills while using the wood screws provided.
Ensure the measurements of the completed door frame match your planning to avoid issues.
Step 3 - Decide on opening preferences
How your doors open will be necessary to the flow of your home. You can choose whether the doors open from the left or the right.
You should then assemble your top track with your preferred bifold opening options in mind before securing it to your assembled door frame.
Step 4 - Install the door frames
Your assembled door frames can now be installed. This should be done with the sill facing towards the outside. The frame must be square and straight.
When the frame has been secured, seal around the joint base and jamb with silicone sealant. You can now permanently install the top track to your frame.
Step 5 - Seal the frame
Sealing your door frame will help to protect it from the elements. Anyone in the UK will know we can experience all sorts of weather.
This means that this part of the job is essential to the performance and efficiency of your bi-fold doors.
Fitting your weather seals around the frame and brushing the seal into the door's frame head will do this.
Step 6 - Fit the drop bolts
The drop bolts are unkeyed points that are crucial in securing the door. These must be installed before the pivot door.
Step 7 - Fit the pivot door
Different types of hinges can be fiddly, so follow the manufacturer's instructions to fix your pivot hinges. You should then select the pivot block and door track. This will need to be drilled in place.
Two people will be needed for the next section as the door must be lifted onto the bottom pivot. Make sure the door is straight and adequately attached to the bottom pivot.
Step 8 - Install the middle doors
You can then start to fit your middle doors in the same way. They can then be attached to the frame.
Step 9 - Make adjustments to the fitted doors
Make adjustments to ensure the doors are fitted correctly and move smoothly.
Step 10 - Fit your fixtures
Installing your lock system will provide your home with security. The lock will fit into the frame jamb, and you can install the door handles.
After installing the lock and handles, you can finish by fitting the magnetic catches and doorstop.
Step-By-Step Guide On How To Install Internal Bifold Doors
Many elements of fitting internal bi-fold doors will mirror that of installing an external bi-fold door system.
Take a look below for a complete step-by-step guide for installing internal bifold door systems:
Step 1 - Prep
Preparing the area and ensuring you have everything you need to complete the job is essential. It will allow you to carry out the job with minimal disruption.
Step 2 - Position your top track
Use your measuring tape and a pencil to mark 19 mm from the door frame's front edge. This is where the top track should be positioned.
Step 3 - Decide on the opening
If the door is to open from the left, the track bracket pivot hole should be to the left. Reverse this if you want your door to open from the right.
Step 4 - Position the track
The track should be positioned behind the line you have marked. It must be central and level.
Mark the screw holes so you can drill pilot holes using a 2 mm wood drill bit.
Step 5 - Screw the track in place
You can now screw your track into place with the screws that the manufacturer has provided.
Step 6 - Position the bottom track
Measure and mark the positioning of your bottom track. This will depend on the door size and the manufacturer's advice. Mark 19 mm again so it is in alignment with the top track.
Step 7 - Position the bottom pivot bracket
The bottom pivot bracket will be placed in the left corner for left-opening doors. Reverse this for right-opening doors.
The bracket should be positioned so you can mark where to drill pivot holes with a pencil. The bracket can then be secured in place by using 35 mm screws.
Step 8 - Fit the plastic pivot retainer
The plastic pivot retainer can be slotted into your bottom pivot bracket. Sometimes, the bracket will float and will not be fixed to your floor.
Step 9 - Position the top pin pivot and roller guide pivot
To position the top pin pivot and roller guide pivot, you should stand the bifold door in the door frame opening. Fold the doors at a 90-degree angle and loosely slot the fittings into the pre-drilled holes.
This should also be carried out for the serrated bottom pivot.
Step 10 - Secure the pivots
Remove the door and use a rubber mallet to tap the pivots into place carefully.
Step 11 - Install the bifold door
Having another pair of hands when installing a bifold door can be helpful. This will allow you to get the correct position and hold the door when using pivots and pins.
The top pivot in the track should be unscrewed and released at this point. You can move the door back into place and engage the top pin pivot.
The roller guide can then be engaged into the track. Make sure it slides smoothly and freely while supporting the door.
Step 14 - Fit the bottom pivot
The bottom pivot can then be slotted into the pivot bracket. This should also be checked for free motion.
Step 15 - Make adjustments
When the door is in place, you can make any necessary adjustments to ensure the door is level and opens smoothly.
Tighten the screws only when you know the door is aligned.
Safety Tips For Installing Bifold Doors
Always wear safety goggles when drilling the pilot or fixing holes to ensure you're safe when installing bifold doors.
You can also wear a dust mask to minimise the risk of inhaling dust or debris when drilling.
If possible, get someone to help you when installing the doors, as they can hold your step ladder and hold the doors in place as you adjust the bifold door or hinges and necessary parts.
Can anyone install bifold doors?
The installation of bifold doors can typically be carried out by most people with experience in this kind of work.
Internal bifold sliding doors don't have as much at stake as they will not be open to the weather. Because of this, it is more likely that most people can carry out their installation.
Installing external bifold doors is an important job. Ensuring the door opening is completely sealed and weatherproof is essential.
Your bifold door system should also be secure. Getting a professional to carry out the installation is advised if you do not have the relevant experience.
Do I have to follow the manufacturer's installation instructions?
Following the manufacturer's installation instructions for your bifold door system is essential.
This is because doors may differ and require specific action.
The manufacturer will design and provide specific instructions for their product. Failure to follow this could void a warranty.
How long does bifold door installation take?
Installing a bifold door will typically take around a day for a professional to complete. This will vary depending on the complexity of the installation.
The job's size and the property's condition can also affect installation times and how much the bifold doors cost to fit. The bigger the doors, the longer it takes and the higher the labour cost.
Most bifold door manufacturers will provide a detailed installation guide to help you fit your doors. Following this will be essential to how good a job you can do.
Professional installation is advised for external door projects. This will give you peace of mind and help to ensure the warranty is valid.
If you plan to install your bifold doors, the guide above should help. Always take the time to check every step and make sure you carry them out safely.