HVAC zoning can seem like an overwhelming concept, but it’s easy to understand if you break it down. HVAC zoning is a way to reduce your energy consumption by heating or cooling certain sections of your home independent of the other areas. A zoned system doesn’t require any additional furnaces or air conditioners. A zoned system easily integrates into your home’s current HVAC system. But if you’re wondering what is HVAC zoning and how it works, the team at Doc Dancer Heating & Air is here to explain this concept so you can understand why adding a zoning system to your home is a smart move.
The Need for HVAC Zoning
Traditionally, all areas of the home are heated and cooled the same way. We use one thermostat to control one HVAC system which produces the same temperature for all rooms and spaces. You’re at the mercy of conditions near the thermostat, even though the rest of the house could be 1000 degrees or 20 degrees below zero – the thermostat doesn’t know it. In a house with just one thermostat, you can only set one temperature and once the air reaches the desired temperature near the thermostat, the HVAC system shuts off, even if other areas further away from the thermostat aren’t at the set temperature yet.
The issue with this is that different rooms have different needs, and a single setting does not allow the home’s HVAC system to accommodate these variations. An HVAC zoning system creates a way for customizing temperatures throughout the house to keep everyone comfortable.
How Does an HVAC Zoning System Work?
A zoned HVAC system provides a way to use the home’s existing HVAC system to provide individual heating and cooling that meets the needs of each person in the household so that everyone has the ideal room temperature in their own area. An HVAC zoning system divides your home into sections, known as zones. Each of these zones can set unique temperature setpoints, as opposed to a single temperature setting for an entire home.
A zoned HVAC system is installed alongside new HVAC equipment or retrofitted to existing heating and cooling systems. Dampers are installed within ducts to regulate the distribution of heated and cooled air throughout the house. The thermostat controls and the dampers communicate with a control board installed with the HVAC unit. Multiple dampers can be installed to create multiple zones.
In a ducted zoned HVAC system, one central thermostat controls the heating or cooling system. These settings are then communicated to the control panel. The central control panel tells the HVAC system to start up your air conditioner or furnace. Then, the panel opens and closes specific dampers to send the heated or cooled air to that area and restrict it from entering other zones where it is not needed. You might consider a ducted zoned HVAC system if you have lots of hot and cold spots throughout your house, but have a fairly new furnace or air conditioning system in place.
Another kind of zoned HVAC system can be created with ductless mini splits and a heat pump. The individual zones are controlled by air handlers in each area. A zone can be an individual room or a couple of rooms, depending on the size of your house. Each thermostat controls its own zone, meaning that your house will contain multiple thermostats. Ductless zoned HVAC systems are a good option for older homes without air ducts, or in a home with a new addition or a sunroom.
Why an HVAC Zoning System is a Great Addition to Your Home
A zoned HVAC system will give you a new level of control over the heating and cooling of your home. With an HVAC zoning system, you will get a greater degree of control and customization of your home’s temperature, so that each area’s needs are perfectly met rather than heating or cooling the entire house to one temperature.
Besides individual comfort, one of the biggest benefits of a zoned HVAC system is energy savings, too. With HVAC zoning, your heating and cooling equipment actually works less and uses less energy. Your HVAC system does not have to run constantly to maintain a steady temperature across all living areas. You will have better temperature control throughout your home with a single HVAC system or multiple air handlers. You can turn off your heating and cooling system for energy savings and better energy efficiency so you’re not heating or cooling empty rooms. This cuts down on energy waste extensively. Ultimately, you save money and reduce wear and tear to your heating and cooling units so they last longer and don’t break down as often.
Install an HVAC Zoning System in Your Home
Now that we’ve discussed what is HVAC zoning, do you see how such a system could make your life better? Call Doc Dancer Heating & Air to learn more about having a zoned HVAC system in your home.