Fitting bi-fold doors is a great way to bring light into your home and connect inside space with outside space. When you're choosing your bi-fold doors, you might be asked to choose between top hung and bottom rolling. With a top hung bi-fold door, the door's weight is supported from above; with a bottom rolling bi-fold, weight is supported from below.
In general, you'll find that bottom rolling bi-fold doors are less expensive than top hung ones, but that doesn't mean they're better. Here are just three reasons top hung bi-fold doors are worth the added cost.
1. More Effortless Motion
When your bi-fold doors are top hung, weight-bearing tracks perfectly distribute weight to ensure your doors can be opened very quietly and with minimal resistance. When you go for a bottom rolling, most of the door's weight is concentrated at the front wheels as you open them, so more force is needed. It's not like you'll need to be a weightlifter to get your bottom rolling door moving, but it's much nicer using a bi-fold that opens smoothly and quietly with a lighter touch.
2. Less Chance of Breakage
Bi-fold doors are generally used when homeowners want to connect an inside living space with their outside space; you might fit a bi-fold door between kitchen and patio to create one large entertaining and dining area. The problem is, dirt can get tracked in on feet and shoes, and dust and other debris can get blown in by the wind. When all that builds up in a bottom rolling bi-fold door's track, it becomes harder to close the door, and the risk of damage rises. It's not an issue with top hung doors since gravity keeps the mechanism clean and very little gets up there in the first place.
3. Concealed Operation
If you want to create a more seamless appearance, you should choose a top hung bi-fold door. Most of the operating mechanism is concealed above your head, which people generally find makes for a better appearance. With a bottom rolling bi-fold door, the mechanism runs right along the floor. This creates a conspicuous break between indoor space and outdoor space that can ruin your room's style. Additionally, having an exposed rail along the floor increases the chances of trips and falls. Given that you might be carrying anything from loaded plates to outdoor furniture with you, it's best to ensure you're not going to take a tumble.