It is both impractical and unusual to have bedroom pocket doors. They are less secure, difficult to maintain, and very expensive to buy and install. Pocket doors are also easily damaged when rock debris makes them refuse to roll, hence unsuitable for bedroom entry doors.
Why Is It Impractical To Have Bedroom Pocket Doors?
A pocket door is one that slides inside the wall when opened, making it “disappear.” They are different from barn and sliding doors since they remain visible on any occasion, whether opened or closed. Some of the reasons why it is impractical to have them as your bedroom doors include;
They tend to use all the interior wall space where they slide when open. Such areas could be used for studs or vertical boards on the wall to support the floor and roof trusses. For a bedroom pocket door to function properly, it will require the constructors to build a thicker wall to support its door and also the studs.
Another reason is that light switches are usually near the bedroom entry doors and moving one is very expensive. Additionally, you cannot move light switches since they have specific locations where electric wires and strings are connected. Installing a bedroom pocket door would require you to get an electrician to open up the wall to find out the position of the junction box. From there, the electrician can decide whether it is possible to have the door installed or not.
It is also impractical since, at some point, you may need to insert a nail or screw inside the wall for mounting purposes. However, doing so can cause piercing and damage to the pocket door, which is very expensive to buy and install.
Other reasons that make it impractical to have bedroom pocket doors are that they lack acoustic control, hard and expensive to maintain, have poor shutting and sealing, making them have fewer privacy options. They also do not enhance resale value since they are fragile and come off track easily hence get damaged.
When Are Pocket Doors Considered Practical?
Even though they are impractical for bedroom use, sometimes they are the best option when you want them to serve a specific purpose. For instance, pocket doors are a practical choice when you have a small bedroom since they can connect doors between two spaces, like between a walk-in closet and an ensuite.
They are the perfect choice for use to create privacy in office areas within large spaces. For example, they help hide the kitchen off in an office space. For people who are into décor more than privacy, the pocket doors are the way to go. They tend to blend in with any form of décor, from traditional to contemporary. They bring out wonderful details to homeowners, especially when dressed up with additional modern hardware decorations like frosts or stained glass inserts.
Some interior designers use pocket doors as art as part of home décor. They achieve this due to the wide range of colors and textures available for pocket doors without the risks of color crushing since they are hidden most of the time.
Which Are The Recommended Bedroom Doors?
Since pocket doors are associated with so many drawbacks when used for the bedrooms, barn doors are the recommended sliding doors. To begin with, they are easier and cheaper to install compared to pocket doors. They are also easy to maintain and repair since their rolling track is reachable and visible. They also tend to lock up firmly hence providing more privacy and security.
How Do Pocket Doors Compare With Barn Doors?
Pocket doors and barn doors are the most commonly used sliding doors. People opt for sliding doors in most cases since they take up less space compared to swinging doors. Barn doors compare with pocket doors in the following ways;
Pocket doors disappear completely by sliding inside the wall when opened. For this reason, most pocket doors come in plain versions since they are shut out of sight despite there being a wide range of materials and colors used to make them. On the other hand, barn doors come in more distinctive styles and designs, even though they are mostly wood. They also fit well in many house designs ranging from rustic modern cottages and farmhouses. However, unlike pocket doors, they do not go well with traditional and contemporary settings.
Both door types are meant to save up on space. They do not swing or hang in or out of the room, meaning they can serve perfectly for bathroom use. While pocket doors slide and conceal themselves in the wall, barn doors slide through a track outside the wall covering it when opened. They also block wall switches and outlets. For this reason, you do not need wall arts or shelving as it will get surrounded by the wall. However, artwork and other wall décor are required for the pocket door instead of leaving a plain and less interesting wall when the door is open.
Pocket doors are difficult to install and require a lot of time since they involve quite a long process. In some cases, where there is a pre-existing wall, they need it to be opened to install the door track. In other cases, you must rebuild the wall if it is too thin and not thick enough to conceal the pocket door track. It is impossible to install a door track without load redistribution in the walls making the process long and tedious.
On the other hand, barn doors are installed along the outside of an adjacent wall, making them easier to install since the track is visible throughout. They can also be installed on any wall type, no matter how thick or thin they happen to be. Therefore, you do not need to reopen or rebuild a wall making the process less tedious and time-consuming.
The main cost difference in both doors comes in during installation. Pocket doors are difficult to install, especially in a pre-existing wall which raises the final cost. For this reason, constructors advise homeowners to install pocket doors in new construction.
Barn doors go for around $400 when purchasing. Regardless of whether it is a pre-existing or new construction, their installation cost ranges between $100-$300. Buying and installing a pocket door goes between $100 to $400 for new construction and $1000-$2500 for an existing wall. The total cost of a barn door ranges between$500-$1200, while pocket doors installations prices range between $500-$2900.
Pocket doors come in different types translating to extra costs. The table below has different pocket door types and their price ranges for an easier decision making process;
|Pocket Door Type||Average Cost (Buying price)|
|Single pocket door(has the normal single door width)||$120 – $2000|
|Double pocket door( involves two doors and tracks to serve as a single large doorway)||$400 – $4,000|
|Single French pocket doors( usually glass door found in older homes)||$1000 – $2000|
|Double French door||$2000 -$4000|
Both door types require high maintenance levels to prevent them from going off the tracks. It would help if you kept the door tracks free from dust and rock debris which can cause either the door or the rollers to catch, making it difficult to slide along. They also require occasional rehanging and reoiling for maximum effectiveness.
However, barn doors are easier to maintain since they are completely visible and more reachable than pocket doors. Pocket doors are difficult to maintain since they have at least half of their track concealed deep into the walls.
Both door types have a track that can cause durability issues. In most cases, sliding door problems are traced back to their path, especially when rock debris is involved, making it difficult for the door to open or close. The main issues involved are rolling, squeaking, hanging, and difficulty to lock and seal. Maintaining barn doors is easier since they are more accessible than pocket doors. A small problem in pocket doors can be easily escalated as their tracks are concealed deep inside the walls.
Are Bedroom Pocket Doors Worth It?
Having pocket doors to serve as the doorway to your bedroom is not worth it. First, they do not offer much acoustic privacy since they do not lock and stick like the normal swinging doors. A bedroom should have high privacy levels since it is the room holding most of your items. Second, they do not dampen sound, light, and smell, making them unsuitable for a bedroom in households with kids. Third, there will be too much noise entering your bedroom, making it difficult to sleep or relax.
Additionally, pocket door tracks easily get damaged due to small items such as rock debris, making it difficult to lock the door. They also refuse to roll, forcing you to leave your bedroom unlocked. In such a case, they are unsafe; hence you cannot store valuables in your bedroom since their insecurity is uncertain.
In conclusion, it is impractical to have bedroom pocket doors since they easily get damaged. A small problem such as refusal to roll will attract high maintenance costs and a long reinstallation process as it will require you to open the wall, repair the damage then rebuild it. They are also expensive yet insecure since they do not lock and stick-like ordinary swinging doors.