Two pairs of swing doors for closets?

ontariomomJuly 8, 2012

Hi, everyone,

We are not big fans of bi-folds for closet doors, and wondered if we could put two pairs of double swing doors in our closets? To give an example, we have a bedroom closet that measures 7 feet interior with an opening of 5 feet 5 inches. We have two questions:

1) If we choose to do a pair of double doors, do we need to have door trim around each set of doors like posted below, or can we get away with less space and trim in between the two sets of doors? If a single 2x4 could be used, the minimum space between each set of doors would be approx. 2 and 1/2 inches; if two 2x4s had to be used, the space would be 4 inches.

The image below was kindly posted by Mileaday. It shows both sets of double doors with separate trim around each set of doors, but definitely more than the minimal space between them we are proposing.

2) Our second question concerns the optimal return on each side of the closet. Currently the way it was framed was to have 9 inches on each side of the door for a return. The original plan was to have bi-fold doors. However, if we move to swing doors, should we keep the 9 inch returns or reduce them. What size returns, if any, are optimal?

Thanks in advance for your input.


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Butting the casing trim of the two door openings requires careful placement of the door frames. I would either put them together or leave a wall space 8" or wider between them.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 7:17AM
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Why not make just one pair of double doors?

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 7:57AM
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one pair of double doors requires more bedroom floor space when you open them. These "mini-doors" are only 18" or so of swing into the room versus 30 or more for regular doubles.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 10:17AM
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true but 2 pair of double doors requires the exiting opening to be reframed and more sheetrock, paint etc.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 10:35AM
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Thanks everybody for your input! Millworkman, we considered just one pair of double doors, but realized having the clearance in front of the doors would be an issue at times (as you mentioned, Kirkhall). Renovator8, we were hoping it would be possible to just put casing around the set of doors as a whole, rather than each door individually. If we did decide to go that route, should we put 2 2x4s in the middle to attach the middle two doors to, perhaps covered by a modified piece of trim? We are lucky that is has just been framed in, so can still make changes if needed to the openings. The framers are back this week to finish up.

Can anyone tell me what the optimal side return of closets should be in this case with a double set of swing doors. Presently it is framed with a 9" return on each side.

Thanks again for your comments.


    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 12:00PM
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