Empty nesters discussing finances

The HVAC Zoning Guide for Empty Nesters

If you’re on your way to an empty nest, you’ve got plenty on your mind. You have more free time in your future you’ll want to figure out things to do. You’re likely a little worried about the kids being out on their own for the first time. One thing you might want to include on that list of things to consider: A newly emptied nest changes the way you can use energy efficiently.

Once your kids are all packed up and on their way, one of the first things you’ll see is some of your bills will decrease. After all, there are fewer people consuming the resources in your home—from water and food to electricity.

But even though you’re using lower amounts of energy, that doesn’t mean you can’t be more efficient with the energy you do utilize. With some open rooms, you’re paying to heat and cool spaces you’re not even using. Shutting the doors and vents in those rooms won’t fix that—in fact, you’ll likely use more energy and put a strain on your HVAC that way. Zoning might be just the ticket for you.

What is Zoning?

A zoned heating and cooling system regulates the air in your HVAC to focus on specific spaces—or zones—in your home. They use dampers to divert the air where it’s needed. In homes where temperature control is difficult, zoning systems can be particularly helpful. Rather than deal with just one part of the home that is too hot or cold, zoning permits a custom temperature to be set in the area.

Zoning systems are also helpful for empty nesters who want to save energy and expenses each month. With a zoning system, you can create different zones in your home and control them individually. When the kids are away, you can set the temperature in their space to use less energy. When they come back to visit, you make a small adjustment and it’s like they never left.

Perhaps the best benefit, you can save energy and costs using a zoning system. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you could see a savings of up to 35 percent when you use zoning with a programmable thermostat.

When Should I Think About Zoning?

Zoning systems are an ideal fit for empty nesters who want to save energy while keeping their space just as comfortable as before. They’re also a great choice for homes where:

  • Temperature differs dramatically between different floors or areas of the home.
  • Large windows are a part of frequently used rooms.
  • High ceilings make it difficult to regulate temperatures.

Will Zoning Work with My Existing HVAC?

Generally, zoning works best for residences that have a multi-stage variable capacity HVAC system. This ensures it can function at peak efficiency—so you can save energy and costs. However, there are options for single-stage equipment that also let you realize the benefits of zoning.

And for circumstances that need an even more flexible solution, there are mini split systems that can act as a separate HVAC for difficult to regulate spaces.

Every home’s heating and cooling set up is different. The professionals at Patterson & Stirling Inc can help you determine whether zoning makes sense for you.

An empty nest is a big change—so it’s a great time to reevaluate your heating and cooling system to see if it’s meeting your needs. At Patterson & Stirling Inc, our goal is to confirm that you’re comfortable and your system is working as efficiently as possible. If you want to hear more on how a zoned system could help, call our experts at 814-308-0416 or schedule an appointment with us online.

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