Aluminium Bi-fold Doors vs Sliding Patio Doors: A Comprehensive Comparison

4 min read Doors

Deciding to replace or install new doors in your home can make a significant difference to the overall appearance and functionality of your living space. Two popular choices that homeowners often find themselves deliberating between are aluminium bi-fold doors and sliding patio doors. Both offer unique benefits and can enhance your home in different ways. In this article, we’ll provide a detailed comparison to help you understand the pros and cons of each option.

Understanding the Basics

Before we delve into the comparison, it’s essential to understand each door type.

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Aluminium Bi-Fold Doors: Bi-fold doors, also known as folding sliding doors, are constructed from panels that fold back onto each other when opened. They operate on a track system and provide an extensive, unobstructed opening, connecting the interior of your home seamlessly with the outdoors. Aluminium is often the preferred material for these doors due to its strength, durability, and sleek aesthetic appeal.




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Sliding Patio Doors: Sliding patio doors, on the other hand, typically consist of two large glass panels, one of which slides to open. They offer a simple, classic aesthetic, maximising natural light and providing panoramic views of the outdoors.


sliding patio doors

Aluminium Bi-Fold Doors vs Sliding Patio Doors

Space Utilisation

Bi-fold Doors: Bi-fold doors are an excellent choice if you wish to create a broad and unobstructed transition from indoors to outdoors. They can open up almost entirely, transforming your living space and providing an expansive view and access to your garden or patio.

Sliding Patio Doors: Sliding patio doors, while offering large glass areas, can only open to half their width as one panel is typically fixed. This may limit the aperture to the outdoors, but they require less operational space than bi-fold doors because they slide parallel to the wall, not intruding into the living or garden area


Bi-fold Doors: With their modern, sophisticated design, aluminium bi-fold doors can significantly enhance the overall aesthetic of your home. They offer slim profiles and expansive glass panels, providing an impressive view of the outdoors.

Sliding Patio Doors: Sliding patio doors provide a timeless, classic aesthetic. They also offer large glass areas, enabling a substantial amount of natural light to flood into your home. They may not have the ‘wow’ factor of fully opened bi-fold doors, but they often blend more seamlessly with traditional architectural styles.

Energy Efficiency

Bi-fold Doors: Modern aluminium bi-fold doors usually come with thermal breaks and double or even triple glazing. These features contribute to reducing heat loss in winter and maintaining a cooler interior in summer, contributing to energy efficiency.

Sliding Patio Doors: High-quality sliding patio doors also offer good energy efficiency. They often feature double or triple glazing and effective sealing systems to prevent drafts and heat loss.

Flexibility and Customisation

Bi-fold Doors: Bi-fold doors provide impressive flexibility in terms of design. You can customise the size, colour, number of panels, and opening direction to suit your specific preferences and needs.

Sliding Patio Doors: Sliding patio doors offer fewer customisation options compared to bi-fold doors. However, they can still be tailored in terms of size, colour, and material to complement your home’s existing decor.


Bi-fold Doors: Due to their complex operation system, aluminium bi-fold doors are typically more expensive than sliding patio doors. However, many homeowners consider the investment worthwhile for the unique aesthetic and functional benefits they provide.

Sliding Patio Doors: Sliding patio doors are generally less expensive and easier to install than bi-fold doors. However, they may not offer the same level of ‘wow’ factor or functionality.

In Summary…

Both aluminium bi-fold doors and sliding patio doors have unique advantages and can transform your living space differently. The choice ultimately depends on your needs, architectural constraints, and personal preference. Whether you opt for the expansive views and modern appeal of bi-fold doors or the classic elegance and simplicity of sliding patio doors, both options are a fantastic way to connect your interior with the outdoors and enhance the overall aesthetic of your home.

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