Understanding Bifold Configurations

At Glass Depots, we custom build every set of bifold doors to order, allowing us to offer our customers a variety of configuration options. This ensures that every set of doors is a unique addition to any home or business. In order to make the right choice for your space, you’ll need to understand what options are available and how they will impact the operation of your doors.

Deciding where to place your bifold doors

Glass Depots bifold doors offer the most functionality when placed on a wall between an interior living space and an exterior yard, deck, or patio.

You should consider the direction that your doors face so that you can get just the right amount of sunlight that you’re looking for. Doors facing East will bring the morning sunshine into your home, while doors facing West will bring the sunset in.

Because our bifold doors are bottom rolled, the weight of the door rests on the floor rather than adding load to your structural header, offering you maximum flexibility in the placement of your doors.

Our bifold door systems are custom built to fit any typical residential or commercial space.  

An opening ready for bifold door installation

Choosing your bifold system configuration

Our bifold doors require a minimum of 2 panels and can be built with as many as 14 panels in a single system (7 moving in each direction). Our expert design specialists will work with you to determine such things as direction of panel movement, whether panels should stack to the interior or exterior, and if a swing door is necessary to access your yard, patio or deck. 

A ten panel system

Two side by side two panel systems

A Note About Glass Panel Sizes

The dimensions of your rough opening and number of panels will determine the panel size.  Depending on your specifications, our panels can be built up to 47″ wide and 118″ tall.     

Choosing a bifold door configuration

Finally, you’ll need to decide on the configuration of your bifold setup, which determines how your doors open and close.

You can place a swing door either on the left hand or right hand side of the bifold system.  Some sets allow for the swing door to be placed in the middle of your bifold setup, allowing you to access the outdoors as you would with any regular door. Depending on the size of the opening and the number of panels, you can choose to have all of your panels slide off to one side, or split them so that your doors open from the middle.

We refer to different configurations using a 3 number system (when viewing the doors from the outside):

  • The first number refers to the total number of panels in the entire system. 
  • The second number refers to how many panels open to the left. 
  • The third number refers to how many panels open to the right. 

Check out our bifold door animations to see a variety of configurations in action.

A 6-3-3 system. 6 panels total, 3 panels opens left, 3 panels open right

A 5-5-0 system. 5 panels total, 5 panel open left, 0 panels open right

A variety of additional bifold door layouts

Next Steps

Once you’ve decided on the placement, size, and layout of your bifold door system, you’ll need to make some aesthetic decisions.

Check out our guide on Bifold Finishes, Hardware, Thresholds and Glass to see what we offer.

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