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When considering a bifold door system, it’s important to do your research and make sure you don't end up paying lots of cash for an average product. There are so many suppliers out there that want to sell to you but how do you know if you’re really getting the best deal? Origin and Nanawall are both large aluminum bi-fold door manufacturers based in the US, however, there are many differences between the two, from design to shipping to warranties. Here, we compare Origin Bi-fold Doors to Nanawall’s SL73 folding wall, allowing you to make an informed decision on your bi-fold door purchase.
The Nanawall SL73 features a false mullion on every door sash, which is essentially an extra chunk of door profile that interrupts your view when the doors are closed. It makes the doors look bulky and old-fashioned and even adds to the weight of the doors, making them heavier and harder to operate. In comparison, Origin Bi-fold Doors will only ever feature a maximum of one mullion per door set and usually don’t require a mullion at all. Less mullions mean slimmer sightlines, more glass and overall a more modern look.
The extra structural strength that the mullion provides on the SL73 means Nanawall pass special regulations for extreme hurricane areas such as Miami. Sounds great, but if you live in an area that doesn’t require this level of structural strength then you’ll be paying a lot of money for something you simply don’t need, and suffer with the aesthetic and functional issues that come with it.
Building regulations differ per state, so it’s recommended that you check with your local council what regulations you need to meet in your property. Both the Origin Bi-fold Door and Nanawall SL73 are both engineered to high standards and pass specific performance tests such as Florida’s rigorous High Velocity Hurricane Zone (HVHZ) testing.
Each mullion on the SL73 has 12 hinges, which makes the doors more complicated to install and increases the risk of faults. In comparison, the mullion found on Origin Bi-fold Doors requires just 3 hinges to keep it secure, without compromising strength or security. Additional hinges can be unsightly and can hinder the clean slimline aesthetic of modern aluminum.
An important feature of any door or window is its ability to keep draughts and rainwater out of the home with a proper drainage system. One potential issue with Nanawall’s folding door is that the bottom track doesn’t come with pre-prepared drainage to prevent water damage and provide a route for water to exit away from the doors or property. This means that on-site modifications will need to be made to the track, which could put you at risk at water damage. A potential consequence of making these modifications to the track is that your guarantee may become void as it’s tampering with the foundation of the product.
Unlike Nanawall, Origin’s Bi-fold Doors are equipped with pre-prepared drainage routes to assist with efficient drainage. Origin offer two types of drainage: face drainage and concealed drainage. The type of drainage you need depends on your property type, location and local regulations, but concealed drainage is our most popular option. Learn more about drainage, including threshold options.
Nanawall is a fabricator. It imports its materials from Germany over to its factory in California. They then manufacture the doors in California and send to customers in Florida. All of this shipping creates exponential cost to their customers, as well as lengthy lead times (about 7-9 weeks). What’s more, Nanawall offer very limited payment services, not currently offering any credit terms. So, as well as paying for a chunky product prone to failing and water damage, you could be paying a large amount for lengthy shipping times. Additionally, in terms of price of the bifolds compared to Origin, Nanawall bifolds have often been 3 times the price of Origin Bifold Doors.
To contrast, Origin Bi-fold Doors are made in America, using materials purchased from American suppliers. Origin is a systems house and a fabricator with its factory based in Venice, Florida. This means Origin has much greater control over the design, manufacture and development of its products than Nanawall. Origin also has much more control over its supply chain, which is how it’s able to ship in just 3 weeks.
Both Origin and Nanawall offer a 10 year warranty as standard for their folding doors. However, if you’re based on the coast and you’re looking to install Nanawall folding doors then you’re likely to only receive a 1 year coastal warranty. On the other hand, Origin offer a 5 year warranty for coastal properties, covering all door components as well as powder coating, giving you peace of mind that you and your home will be safe for a long time.