Pocket doors are doors that slide into a wall rather than opening on a hinge like most traditional doors. They have been used for over a century in order to save space, both in confined areas and in the central areas of Victorian style homes in order to partition off large areas such as sitting rooms and dens. If you’re looking for a space saving solution in closets, bathrooms or in larger homes with interior French doors, these innovative door solutions may turn out to be the answer you’ve been looking for.
The benefit of this type of door is clear, it saves space. With housing costs what they are today, every squaren foot of wasted space that can be converted to usable living area is to be treasured. Traditional swinging doors hung on a hinge can take up as much as 10 square feet of your living space just to accommodate the space they need to swing open and closed. On the other hand, a pocket door simply slides into a frame installed within the wall, freeing up the space that a conventional door would occupy. They are especially suited to cramped, small areas like half baths and small closets. Any area where a swinging door takes up valuable space or is an inconvenience to those using them is a candidate for a pocket door installation. In more wide open homes where French doors are typically installed between living areas they free up precious space for furniture or foot traffic.
One of the major complaints of this style of door in the past has been that older versions ran on steel runners and rollers and were noticeably noisy in comparison to their hinged counterparts. This is no longer true; while the runners are still made of solid steel the most common rollers are now made of a hard nylon material that dramatically reduce the noise they make when the door is being opened or shut. Deluxe ball bearing rollers are also available that reduce the noise to virtually nothing.
The innovations in runner technology have also alleviated one of the major drawbacks of these types of doors; doors that jumped the tracks inside the wall. Modern doors rarely have this problem because of the high quality products currently available on the market.