Bifold vs Sliding Closet Doors (Which Is Better?)

Bifold vs Sliding Closet Doors

Are you on the hunt for the best door type for your closet? There are actually several options at hand, but two of the most remarkable picks are none other than bifold doors and sliding doors. So, stay on this page as we give you a detailed comparison between the two popular choices―bifold vs sliding closet doors.

Why closets should have doors?

Some people may think that doors are not that relevant for your closet. Unfortunately, this is a wrong perception. Your closet is a pivotal part of your home. So, you should always keep it clean and secure. And of course, installing a door is one of the best ways to maintain its cleanliness and safety.

Doors serve as a barrier so dirt won’t enter your wardrobe. And more often than not, places like closet easily acquires dirt because of limited ventilation. Therefore, it’s best that you add doors to create minimal lighting and easily visualize the current condition of your closet.

Apart from the cleanliness, doors add privacy and somehow hide the unnecessary sights inside. Having a door is also highly suggested, especially if your closet is positioned near your bathroom. The humidity of the bathroom may impact the closet, hence the need to add a barricade to prevent moisture buildup.

Why closets should have doors
Image Credit: southfloridadoorsclosets

Which is the better: Bifold vs sliding closet doors?

While there are plenty of closet door options, two types that take up the spot are bifold doors and sliding doors. So, in this article, you get to know more about these remarkable choices and learn how to pick the best one for your needs.

Each door type has certain elements that make it unique. Thus, it’s important that you are able to distinguish the two according to their key features. For easier reference, we will list down the major aspects, including the design, storage space, and price, among others.

1. Structure

  • Bifold

Bifold or bi-fold closet doors are quite fascinating in general because of their main structure. This type of closet door involves a series of mechanisms to generate various sections or folds up to six door panels.

With intricate engineering, this allows bifold closets to fold open and fold back the stacks seamlessly. Furthermore, it makes use of hinges to create such movement. To better conceptualize a bifold closet door, just simply think of a concertina.

Because of its main look, a bifold wardrobe door needs extra structural support. It also uses up a bit of floor space. And, there may be a possibility of the folding panels coming off the track if exerted with too much force.

  • Sliding

Sliding closets, on the other hand, are the typical closet doors that smoothly slide open and close. And to accomplish this motion, it uses runners or roller tracks. The runner is generally installed on door frames, allowing the door to glide on opposing sides with ease.

Unlike bi-folding doors, sliding doors do not swing out. Hence, you won’t need too much effort to open the closet. Moreover, this style of the door may use one or more door panels, depending on your personal preference.

Since these closet doors utilize roller tracks, they may bend over time. Rust accumulation may also occur, adding up to the problem. On the bright side, the structure of sliding doors means that it does not take up extra floor space.

Sometimes, sliding doors are linked with pocket doors because of their similar mechanisms. However, there are key differences between the two. A sliding closet door slides parallel to the interior section whereas a pocket door glides into the adjacent wall or hidden compartments that serve as pockets.

Image Credit: drymos.kouzines

2. Materials

  • Bifold

Bifold doors encompass a rather intricate door profile. There is a leading door and a jamb-side door, which both come with key parts such as a door bracket, pull hander, stopper, tracks, aligners, pivot plates, and hinges.

As to the materials used, these vary accordingly. The door frames are commonly made of wood while the door profile itself depends on your liking. Likewise, there are options for all-wood composition. Another top-notch material is aluminum, which is known for its stylish and durable features.

That being said, there’s a wide selection of materials to choose from. This makes bifold closets highly customizable and popular among homeowners.

  • Sliding

When it comes to sliding doors, the most common material is glass. Because of this, sliding doors are generally lightweight yet still sturdy. Apart from glass, some are made of wood like barn-style kind of doors. An aluminum finish is also a great substitute too.

3. Design

  • Bifold

In terms of design, bifold has limited design opportunities. It’s due to the structure of the door itself. For example, if you open a bi-fold door, the mechanism leads to other door panels being covered. As a result, it won’t be practical to have detailed designs since they will be restricted.

But of course, bi-fold doors exude that unique aura, adding up to its sophistication. It seems like an upgrade to a typical sliding door. More so, the premium and distinct structure of the doors easily transforms a room.

  • Sliding

Meanwhile, sliding doors come with extensive design styles, from simple ones to stylish options. There are lots of things you can do with a sliding door. If you opt for wood material, then you can choose a sliding barn door with modish carvings to elevate the entire closet look.

Aside from that, you can incorporate a full-length mirror into the door, creating a mirrored closet door that is perfect for your styling needs. You may even add curtains for a stylish take on your wardrobe.

Image Credit: classicimprovementproducts

4. Space

  • Bifold

Moving forward, let’s focus on how bi-fold doors take up space. While this type of door is such a remarkable choice in terms of style, it surely takes up space. Hence, these may not be recommended for tight spaces. In addition, the far sides of your closet may be difficult to access considering the door design.

  • Sliding

Sliding doors are the best option if you have limited space in your room. As it only slides, it does not require extra space; it’s like a part of the closet itself. So, for small rooms, this is commendable to efficiently maximize the space.

The interior space, however, may be challenging to access. It’s because the setup outlines limited access to the closet, especially if you open the door. Only half of the closet can be seen unless you have designed it as a sliding pocket door.

5. Storage

  • Bifold

Unlike traditional doors, bifold closet doors are the best option if you want to easily store your things. The wide closet design allows you to access the interior, giving you a lot of room to utilize each corner of the wardrobe.

And if you’ve got items that aren’t used on a daily basis, you can seamlessly store them on top. Plus, you won’t be having a hard time seeing the whole storage space.

  • Sliding

As mentioned earlier, sliding doors do not display the entirety of the closet space. You can only see half of it at a time. Therefore, storing your clothes and other items may be more tedious since you need to slide the door to one side and the other.

However, a core advantage of sliding doors is that you can actually create a storage wall. If you have extra space in the room, bang together at least two sliding wardrobes to build a minimalist yet very efficient storage solution.

Image Credit: komandorclosets

6. Price

  • Bifold

And of course, you can’t miss out on the cost of the materials and even the labor. Since bifold generally encompasses more hardware and resources, this largely affects the overall cost. The prices of the glass panels, sliding track, door frames, and such are highly taken into consideration when making your budget.

Aside from the mix of materials, you also need to factor in the installation process. And compared to sliding doors, the process of setting up a bifold closet door is a complex one. This is the main reason why this type of door is often installed by the experts or the manufacturer itself.

DIY installations may be tiring because of the numerous components as well as the intricate setup. Because of these factors, bifold doors are downright expensive.

  • Sliding

Compared to bifold, sliding closet doors are way cheaper. However, there may be certain elements that add up to its price. For example, if you chose a superior glass material with elegant designs, then the cost of the material would definitely increase.

7. Availability

  • Bifold

Although there are ready-made bifold doors, personalized ones are more in-demand. Accordingly, these require additional carpentry upon installation, leading to limitations of products in the market.

  • Sliding

Sliding closet doors, on contrary, are easily accessible. You can buy them from hardware stores and install them on your own.


Whether you’re building a new home or remodeling your room, one thing that you need to consider is the closet door. This might appear to be insignificant but it’s actually a pivotal aspect, especially for the maintenance of your wardrobe. So, get started with your closet door ideas and turn them into reality!

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