The Benefits of Having a Traffic Door in Your BifoldPosted 16th June 2015 in Blog
Bifold doors offer a great many benefits, but there are a couple of possible drawbacks:
- If a bifold patio door is the only way from the house to the garden, you can't get in from outside when it's locked.
- During cold weather, you have the choice between having the whole door open and having no access to the garden.
All isn't lost, though. That's where traffic doors come in.
What Are Traffic Doors?
A traffic door is, essentially, a conventional door built into a bifold door system. It opens separately from the bifold, so it can be used for access between inside and outside without having to open the whole set. It has a lever handle and its own locking mechanism, so it can be opened equally from inside or outside.
A traffic door can either be hinged to the door-frame, operating independently of the bifold, or else it can be attached to the bifold itself. These configurations depend on the number of door leaves, for instance you'll need an odd number of door leaves to enable the door to fold away with the rest if you want the whole set open. When you have an even number of door leaves and require a traffic door, then you will either need one door hinged to the frame, or have a french door style traffic door in the middle of a 6 panel bifold door.
Why Have a Traffic Door?
In hot, summer weather, there's nothing better than having bifold doors flung open and stacked neatly out of the way. It lets fresh air into the house and allows you to wander in and out with no division between the two spaces.
When there's a chill in the air, though, the advantage of bifold doors is the great view they give you of your garden while their double glazing keeps you warm and comfortable inside. The last thing you want is to have to open the whole set and freeze everyone in order to go out.
It's important that external bifold doors lock on the inside, otherwise they could be a weak point in the house's security. This can make it awkward, though, if you want access from outside.
In both cases, a traffic door allows you to have the best of both worlds.
Do You Always Need a Traffic Door?
Traffic doors aren't essential for all external bifold doors. For instance, if you have a kitchen door opening straight into the garden, as well as the bifold doors, that might be adequate for access when the patio doors are closed.