With a "typical" home heating and cooling system, one thermostat controls the temperature of the entire home. With a zoned system, however, individual thermostats throughout a home provide additional temperature control. In a two-story home, for example, having one thermostat downstairs and one thermostat upstairs can allow for more consistent heating and cooling year-round. Dampers installed inside a home's existing ductwork allow for more precise airflow--so air is only sent to the areas of the home that need it.
What many homeowners don't realize is that zone control can be installed on an existing HVAC system. Is this option right for you? Consider some key benefits, along with what to expect from the retrofitting process, to help you decide.
Benefits of Zoned Heating and Cooling
There are many advantages to having zoned heating and cooling in your home. For starters, you'll enjoy a higher level of temperature control, which means you can stay more comfortable inside your own home. Meanwhile, zone control systems can improve energy efficiency and save you a lot of money. By only heating or cooling the areas of your home that need it, you can cut your energy bills by as much as 30%.
If you choose to sell your home down the road, having a zone control system in place can also attract potential buyers.
How Zoned Temperature Control Is Installed
In order to come up with a "game plan" for installing zone control in your home, you'll want to contact an HVAC company that has specific experience with this to come out and perform an assessment.
While no two homes are exactly alike, most retrofitting projects will require the same basic equipment. This includes a zone control panel, which is a small computer/motherboard that will actually control the equipment itself. This is usually mounted in the same room as your home's furnace. You'll also need additional thermostats to control the temperature in each zone. If you're installing a three-zone system, for example, you'll need three separate thermostats.
Finally, you'll need to have dampers installed inside your ducts to control the flow of air to each zone. These dampers are controlled by your thermostat and the zone control panel, allowing for opening and closing as needed.
Is Zone Heating and Cooling Right For You?
Before you decide to have zoned heating/cooling added to your home, make sure you've taken other steps to optimize energy efficiency and comfort. This should include sealing leaks and drafts in doors and windows, as well as insulating ductwork. From there, you can better decide whether it's worth it for you to add zone control to your HVAC system for the extra comfort and energy savings.
To learn more, contact an HVAC company.