Trap doors 
Trap doors are naturally seen as mysterious, and are sometimes designed to encourage curiousity.

What is a trapdoor?

A trapdoor is a door set into a floor or ceiling which opens up or down to allow access between different levels of a house. These doors are often used to gain access to a cellar or attic in homes, and are very rarely used nowadays to disguise actual traps...

The doors may be obviously marked or hidden, blending in with the surrounds by incorporating the design of the floor or ceiling. Depending on what the door is used for, the hinges may be internal or external to the door, and this will determine which way it opens. Very occasionally, a sliding panel may be used in place of a hinged door. In these cases the panel slides along into a recess in the floor or ceiling until it is virtually hidden from view.


How do trapdoors work?

Trapdoors are operated in the same manner as hinged doors; they are pushed or pulled open. For trapdoors however there may be no door handle or lever mechanism; sometimes a groove is cut into the floor or ceiling to allow a grip on the side of the door to operate it, and other times it may simply be pushed. These doors typically rely on gravity to keep them closed, as opposed to a latch - though obviously this depends on whether they open upwards or downwards.


Where are trapdoors used?

Trapdoors can be used on the interior or exterior of a house, but will invariably lead to a cellar or basement, or provide access to a roof or attic space. A house not in a position to utilise either will have no use for a trapdoor.


Are there any variations on trapdoors?

Depending on purpose and room aesthetics, a trapdoor may be hidden from view and blended with the floor or ceiling, or may be made more obvious. Because they are not common and have many associated pop culture references, trapdoors often hold a sense of mystery and wonder, and this is often played upon when designing these types of doors to make them more visually appealing.