How To Install Bifold Closet Doors
Installing a bifold closet door is a fairly quick and easy DIY project as long as the door opening you are trying to install it into is the correct size and fairly square.
Measuring your opening first will help you determine if you can buy a single door or pair of doors that will fit without either cutting the doors to fit or modifying the opening to size. The widths of finished openings that will allow the easy install of bifold doors are: 18", 24", 30", 36", 48", 60", 72".
The doors when measured are actually slightly narrower to allow for them to clear the sides of the opening when they start to fold while opening or closing. The standard finished opening height on all of these doors is 80-3/4". There is some adjustment in height that can be made on the door hardware so +/- 3/8" from the 80-3/4" is do able without cutting the door.
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- Cordless drill
- Multi-end screwdriver
- 3/16" drill bit
- Tape measure
- Correct size door
TIP: If the opening you want to use is a little larger than needed, you can sometimes add a trim piece of wood around the outer inside edge of the opening to hide the fact that the door does not actually reach the outer edges of the opening.
If you must cut the width of your doors down to fit, I do not recommend cutting more than 1/4" off of each outer end, as this makes the door operate poorly.
TIP: Once you figure out how much you need to trim off the width, do not cut it all off of one edge. Divide it in two and take even amounts off each outside edge.
If you need to cut the height off the doors be careful not to cut too much off as there are holes predrilled in the top and bottom that door hardware fits into and you need this to remain structurally sound in order for the door to operate and last a few years. If you must cut to much off that, these hole become weak, then remove the weak piece and glue in a replacement piece of wood and drill new holes to match.
So now that you have your doors ready to hang it is vey simple. First along the top edge of the door opening mark a straight line from one side to the other measured in at 2" from the front edge. Then decide which side of the opening the door will fold open to. On this side at the floor mark a small line in 2" from the front edge of the opening. Remove the hardware that came with the door from it's packaging and insert the plastic top slide into the metal track then hold that track centered on the line you marked on the top of the door opening (the metal bracket goes on the end where the door folds to when opening it up).
The metal track is usually a little sorter than the width of the opening so center it in the width of the opening. Use 3-4 screws to hold it in place. Now take the "L" shaped metal bracket and center it on the mark you put near the floor and place 2 screws (flat head) through it into the wall and 1 into the floor if possible. Now lay your door down on the floor and insert the pivot pins. There are two top pins and they are spring loaded, place one in each hole you find in the top edge of the door. The bottom pin is treaded into a plastic sleeve. Look at the bottom of the door and insert it in the hole which is going to be on the same side of the door that the door will fold to when opening. You may need to tap these with a hammer lightly to fit them into the door holes.
Now that the pins are in and the top track and bottom bracket are installed it is time to install the door in the opening. Stand the door up on end and fold it in half at the hinge, pick the door up slightly and set the bottom pin down onto the floor bracket. With the door pin resting in the bracket use your fingers to depress the two top pins and align one with the hole that is in the metal bracket on the track and one into the sliding guide in the track. To adjust the height slightly lift the door and tread the bottom pivot pin the direction you need to move the door. To adjust the door side to side slightly lift the door and alter the position of the pin in the bottom bracket loosen the set screw in the top pivot bracket and slide door the retighten set screw.
The door hardware should have included a knob, you will probably find it to be really cheap looking so what I do is use a kitchen cabinet knob that I buy separately. You will need to drill a small hole just big enough for the mounting screw on the knob you purchased (usually 3/16") through the leading door panel about 36'' up from the floor and depending on the style of door you have about 1'' from the side where the hinges are (see photo).
You will find this seems like a lot to remember when reading this article, but once you have the door in front of you and all the hardware everything I have said should make a lot more sense. This is not hard especially if your opening size is right to start with. One other thing you may want to do once you have mounted the door and everything seems good, remove it and paint it. If the door has a embossed wood grain texture to it, I find it much easier and a nicer finish if I use a small electric airless sprayer to apply the paint.
Well good luck I'm sure you will have no troubles succeeding in this DIY project!