I want to install bi-fold closet doors in my bedrooms where sliding doors existed previously. The problem is that the openings are 46", which is too small for the standard 48" bifold doors. I want to use the 6-panel Masonite type doors as I've used on the bedroom entrance doors. I tried ripping one set of doors and they bowed. Any /*suggestions, please? (My daughter has requested doors as her only birthday present, so I'm under the gun by daughter and wife!)
JS from Washington, PA
I can give you a number of options... choose the one that best suits your needs and abilities.
One would be to use solid doors instead of hollow doors. 6-panel molded doors are available with a solid core allowing you to cut a little more from each edge without having the doors weaken. Just be sure to cut the same amount from all 4 vertical edges so the doors look balanced. Most prehung bifold door "sets" come with hollow doors, so you will have to order raw solid doors and purchase the bifold hardware separately.
Another option would be to use three doors instead of two... you would have to use standard hinges on the "outside" door since the standard bifold hinges have a support tab that is unattractive on the outside of the door. Then you need to do less trimming per door edge.
In your letter, you mentioned that the doors "bowed" after trimming. This is because you cut off most of the supporting wood along the edges. This wood can be replaced by cutting and then installing a wood strip along the length of the door to reinforce the edge. The new strip is simply glued in place and clamped till dry... usually 24 hours depending on your choice of adhesive. If you want to add a few nails or screws, do it from the back of the door so they won't show.
Have a small home repair question for THE NATURAL HANDYMAN? Just click here www.naturalhandyman.com/aitikia
For more home repair information, visit NH's growing list of original home repair articles and quality links www.naturalhandyman.com
If this information has been valuable to you, please consider making a small donation to support NH's free service to the home repair community! For more information, please visit our "Friends" page www.naturalhandyman.com/friends
The Natural Handyman Site Directory
- Home Repair Articles www.naturalhandyman.com/iip
- Home Repair Links Library www.naturalhandyman.com/linkslibrary
- NH's Bookshop www.naturalhandyman.com/bookshop
- Find a handyman at www.naturalhandyman.com/network
- Win unique home repair gifts and prizes at www.naturalhandyman.com/contest
Please read the important copyright and disclaimer information is located at www.naturalhandyman.com/copyright
Also in Home
- Creating an outdoor kitchen
- Eliminating bed bugs
- Managing home projects
- Saving on water one drop at a time
- Cheaper summer cooling
- Inexpensive landscaping ideas
- 6 cheap, effective home security solutions
- 5 simple and affordable luxuries for your home
- 5 frugal ways to expand your living space
- Top 10 DIY mistakes made by home 'handymen'
- How spring cleaning can save you money
- 4 secrets to budgeting for a home purchase
- Find the best mortgage rates in your area
- 3 ways to use a mortgage calculator
- Mortgage calculator: Calculate your payment and more
- Home equity calculator: HELOC vs. line of credit
- Mortgage refinance break-even calculator
- How much money can I borrow for a mortgage?
- Who offers the most home insurance discounts?