Folding interior doors: accordion and book

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Folding doors are rare in the interior. And although they have advantages over other types of interior doors (swing or sliding), their use is rather a forced measure. Let’s talk about the two most popular options, device features, advantages and disadvantages.

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

Folding door: device and types

A swing or sliding (sliding) door has one leaf and a common opening mechanism. The folding door has at least two sections in each leaf and is opened using a hybrid mechanism consisting of hinges, like in swing doors, and rollers moving along guides, like in sliding models.

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

Unlike hinged interior doors, the folding mechanism of one leaf can be equipped with hinges of different designs. For example, the edge panel can be fastened to the door frame using an overhead (regular or “butterfly”) or end hinge (with an axis mounted in the leaf), and the folding panels are interconnected by hinges with hidden installation or hinged profiles. The type of hinge and the method of its fastening depend on the materials and construction of the door, as well as on the weight of the panel itself.

Due to the rollers installed on all panels, except for the first from the box, and moving in the guide profile (rail), the process of opening or folding the door takes place. Moreover, the rollers can be placed both on the edge of the panel, if the door is folded on one side relative to the opening, and in the middle of the panel, if the door is folded symmetrically relative to the plane of the opening..

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

Folding doors are made of the same materials as other types of doors: solid wood, MDF, glass, aluminum and plastic.

There are usually two types of folding doors:

  • “Book” – each sash consists of two movable parts;
  • “Accordion” – the canvas is assembled from three or more panels.

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

Advantages and disadvantages

The main advantage of a folding door over a swing door is its compactness when open. It “takes” much less usable space. Even a “book” door, folding on one side of the opening, requires half as much space, and folding in half symmetrically relative to the door frame – four times.

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

The accordion door practically does not occupy the useful volume of the room. Taking into account the width of the panel, usually 10–12 cm, it does not protrude beyond the border of the interior partition.

Compared to sliding systems, a folding door has almost the same advantages over swing doors. Only we are talking about the place that is necessary along the wall in the rolling zone of the canvas. There are, of course, flush-mounted sliding models, or cassette-type, when the canvas goes inside the interior partition. But it is not always possible to install such a door (for example, at the end of a narrow corridor).

The main disadvantage of folding doors is the complicated mechanism. The theory of reliability is a simple science, and it says that the more elements in the system, excluding redundancy and duplication, the lower its MTBF. We can already say that under equal conditions the “book” is more reliable than the “accordion”. But in any case, you need to know that the resource of the folding door mechanism is less than that of a swing or sliding door.

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

One of the disadvantages can be considered lower insulating properties, especially at the doors of “books”. “Accordions” are usually used to connect panels with hinged profiles that cover the ends of the panels along the entire height of the door, and therefore, when closed, they are better from the point of view of isolation from extraneous sounds and odors. But the “accordion” door in the open state takes up part of the opening and narrows the passage.

Application area

Considering the advantages and disadvantages of the folding mechanism, experts recommend installing such models where there is no high traffic or the need for frequent use – for example, dressing rooms or storage rooms (rooms in which doors are rarely opened) or common rooms, living rooms, dining rooms, halls (in which doors are rarely closed).

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

You can find examples of the use of such models as mobile partitions and screens in openings of non-standard width. To achieve the desired size, it is enough to remove or add the panel in the “accordion” canvas.

Folding interior doors: accordion and book

Most often, such doors are used in residential and office premises, as interior doors. It is believed that for entrance doors they have lower thermal insulation properties and resistance to burglary. But if the building is located in a protected area, you can find enough examples of the use of “books” as part of entrance groups, for example, a porch or vestibule, as a mobile glazing of a terrace or veranda.

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