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The Battle of Barn Door vs. Pocket Door

Whether you knew it beforehand or not, there has been an ever-evolving debate in the home remodeling world between two popular door styles: the barn door vs. pocket door.

These two distinctive options have gained immense popularity for their unique aesthetics and space-saving features. To decide whether you are truly team pocket door or team barn door, you must take a closer look at the pros and cons of these two. Doing so will help you make an informed decision on which one might be the better fit for your upcoming home remodeling project, whether that includes your whole home or just a single room being upgraded. It doesn’t matter if you’re aiming for a sleek, minimalist look or a rustic, farmhouse-inspired design (hello, Joanna Gaines), we’ve got you covered with expert insights and advice.

The following overview will help you learn the differences between pocket and barn door styles. Once you know more about each, you’ll be better prepared to make a justified decision. And as ever, if you are needing any more information on the styles, the ReVision team is always here to help.

Barn Door vs. Pocket Door: How Do They Differ?

At first glance, there might not seem to be many differences between a barn door vs. pocket door, as they both hang on a sliding track to save space, but that is where their similarities start and end.

The major difference between the two is the installation method. A barn door is mounted to the surface of the wall, which means the door always remains visible whether open or closed. On the other hand, a pocket door hangs on a track in a recess inside the wall cavity, so it’s hidden when open. Which you choose is all about aesthetics, the amount of space you have, and the surrounding architecture.

How Do These Door Styles Affect Energy Efficiency?

In decisions regarding barn door vs. pocket door styles, appearances can affect your choice.
In this main bedroom, a proper walk-in closet is concealed by a mirrored barn door that creates the illusion of more space by reflecting light.

Let’s take a look at differences in energy efficiency between a barn door vs. pocket door. Energy efficiency might be a significant concern depending on the rooms you intend to separate with the door. For example, you’ll want to control access to drafts and energy waste when finishing a basement, but you might not feel as concerned about airflow if you’re just replacing a bedroom door in your Charlotte home.

A barn door doesn’t close fully. Instead, it merely forms a visible obstacle in front of the doorway. A barn-style door is not the best choice for soundproofing because it allows airflow and sound to pass easily between rooms.

In contrast, a pocket door forms a seal as it’s moved to the closed position, and it sits flush in its threshold, just like a traditional door. It connects with the latch and serves as an effective barrier against airflow. It can also block some ambient noise from locations like Charlotte Douglas International Airport.

How Does Door Maintenance Differ?

What about barn door vs. pocket door maintenance? In addition to helping you save on bathroom space, both types of doors require regular maintenance. Although the maintenance required for each is similar, the construction of a pocket door complicates its care, making a barn door preferable when you want a low-maintenance option.

In maintaining a barn-style door, long-term care consists of keeping the track clear of debris, which can stop the door from sliding properly and cause damage to the track. Additionally, you’ll have to keep the track lubricated according to the door manufacturer’s instructions.

A pocket door requires these same maintenance practices, but its care is more complicated because part of the track is within the adjoining wall. As such, inspecting, cleaning, and lubricating the track can prove difficult.

How Do Design Styles Compare for Charlotte Homes?

There is an evolving debate in the home remodeling world between two popular door styles: barn door vs. pocket door.

In decisions regarding barn door vs. pocket door styles, appearances can also affect your choice. Since a pocket-style door will remain hidden sometimes, you can find an inexpensive model with a plain wood appearance. Still, if you want a more attractive door, you can find many styles and materials, such as finished wood, aluminum, and beveled glass.

Barn-style doors offer a more rustic appearance and as their name implies, they primarily resemble the doors you would find on a barn. These doors are, therefore, best for farmhouses, cottages, and other environments where you want a traditional look. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t make them modern or minimalistic if that is the look you want.

Considering Space

Another difference between a barn door vs. pocket door? How much space they take up.

Senior Project Developer at Revision, Anna Trakas, says “Pocket doors are our go-to for areas where there are lots of door swings in relatively small location. A Jack & Jill bathroom with a separate shower room is a great example of this. If you’ve got a bit more wall real estate and you want your door to be a design feature, a barn door is the way to go—think a walk-in pantry door, an entry closet, etc.”

Now we’ve got you thinking in terms of style, and the size constraints of your space.

Choose a Door Based on Your Needs

As you can see, there are plenty of factors to consider in choosing your door style. It’s easy for the decision to feel overwhelming.
Try focusing on the factors that are most important to you. If you still feel confused, ReVision is available to help. We have door design ideas to share when you call or contact us via our website.