HVAC Zoning Systems: What It Is And How It Helps

Fall is finally on the horizon but the Oklahoma summer heat and humidity aren’t gone yet. Temperatures in Oklahoma cities are still hitting the high 90s, sometimes even ranging into the 100s. With many people finding refuge from the heat inside their homes, air conditioning systems are working overtime. If you’re feeling the pressure of this extra energy use on your electric bills, you are not alone.

Electric bills naturally tend to rise in the summer months but did you know there is a way to keep every area of your home cool and comfortable while saving money? Integrity Heat & Air has some insider tips on how you can use HVAC zoning systems to stay cool and save money on your AC bill this August as summer comes to an end.

If you’re not sure what an HVAC zoning system is or how it works, this homeowners guide offers everything you need to know about how this system can help you save money while keeping your home’s temperature balanced. Once you understand how this system works and if it would benefit your home, we can take you through how to schedule your HVAC zoning system consultation and installation in Oklahoma City and its surrounding areas!

What Is An HVAC Zoning System?

An HVAC zoning system, also known as a zoned HVAC system, splits your home into multiple zones that can all be set to different comfort levels which gives you the ability to fully customize your home’s heating and cooling. This means that instead of having to set your home to one temperature, you can heat or cool different areas to fit the needs of that space.

How Do HVAC Zoning Systems Work?

In order to understand how an HVAC zoning system works, it helps to first look at how a traditional HVAC system functions to then understand how it can be optimized with zoning.

Traditional ducted HVAC systems work by treating the entire space as one zone. For example, if you turn the temperature settings down, then your HVAC system will transport air through your ducts to cool your entire house equally in order to reach your desired temperature.  

An HVAC zoning system will divide your home into separate zones, each with its own thermostat that sends messages to the central control panel to either lower or raise the temperature in that space. With this HVAC system, if you turn the AC or heat on in one area of the home, then only that selected zone will receive airflow to reach that chosen temperature.

How does this all work? The components that differentiate these central HVAC systems from zoned HVAC systems are the HVAC zoning dampers. HVAC dampers are large, movable plates or valves that are located in your air duct system. They regulate the airflow and redirect it to the different zones of your home. 

A zoned HVAC system is made up of 3 key components:

  • Thermostats
  • Central control panel
  • Electronic dampers

The thermostats all connect to the central control panel, which then controls the dampers in your air ducts. Dampers control where the heated or cooled air goes by opening up to allow air to flow into certain areas while blocking off others.

HVAC Zoning Systems: When Is It Worth It? 

While an HVAC zoning system could be the answer to temperature control problems in many homes, they are not always the best fit. The best way to determine if a zoned HVAC system will fit your household’s needs is to speak to an HVAC professional. You should contact an HVAC technician at Integrity Heat & Air today about the possibility of an HVAC zoning system if your home has the following traits:

  1. Multilevel (including basement or attic)
  2. High ceilings
  3. Large windows
  4. Rooms or spaces that are not used much

Zoned HVAC systems were created in order to give homeowners more control over their home’s temperature levels and energy usage while saving them money. Let’s take a look at the ways your wallet could benefit.

4 Ways HVAC Zoning Systems Save You Money 

1. Control Your Energy Usage

Better control over the temperatures in your home means bigger savings when it comes to your energy usage. Some central HVAC systems offer great energy efficiency but with larger homes that have more areas to heat/cool, you could be using excess energy trying to get your entire home to level out to a single temperature. 

A zoned HVAC system will give you more control by allowing you to optimize your energy usage to only what you need. You’ll no longer have to wait for the entire house to heat up or cool down before you notice a change in temperature. You can instead divert your system’s energy toward the areas of your home that need it, giving you more control over your comfort and your energy bill.

2. Accommodate Different Temperature Preferences

Larger homes often have rooms that always feel either too hot or too cold, likely because of differing characteristics like large windows or high ceilings. You could even just have a family member with different temperature preferences.

A zoning system would help end some of those arguments about thermostat settings and allow every person and every room to have their desired temperature needs met. With multiple thermostats that can all be used to accommodate individual preferences, you won’t have to settle on a single temperature for the whole house or waste energy (and money!) adjusting the settings trying to satisfy everyone.

3. Scheduled HVAC Run Times

One of the added perks of a zoned HVAC system is that you can schedule heating and cooling at different times so it automatically adjusts when you need it to. Not only will this align with your needs, but it will also save you money each month by allowing you to slightly raise the temperature during the warmer days and lower it for the cooler nights to keep from having to run when it’s not needed.

Some zoning systems also have the ability to be controlled remotely straight from your phone. Even if you’re not home — on vacation, at work, or running errands — you still have full control over your scheduling and energy consumption. This reduces your electricity bill as you can schedule your HVAC run times from anywhere to account for peak demand times while maintaining control and comfort in your home.

4. Reduced Wear & Tear

All HVAC systems experience natural wear & tear over time. This is due to the almost constant year-round use whether that is cooling your home in the summer or keeping it warm in the winter. At Integrity Heat & Air, we recommend scheduling HVAC maintenance at least twice a year (once in the spring and once in the fall). However, with an HVAC zoning system in place, you may find that during those maintenance visits, needed repairs could decrease.

Since you are able to direct your HVAC system to function at specific levels for different zones of your home, this could decrease how hard your system has to work. In turn, this could also decrease wear & tear while increasing its lifespan. While zoning systems can be a big initial investment with a more complicated install, it could save you money in the long run, not just on energy usage but also on needed repairs and maintenance.

How To Schedule An HVAC Zoning System Installation Or Repair

The best way to tell if an HVAC zoning system is right for you and your home is to schedule a consultation with an HVAC professional. It can be difficult to decide what is the most efficient HVAC option for your home, but a Integrity Heat & Air HVAC technician will be happy to provide you with expert guidance.

Integrity Heat & Air continues to provide top-quality HVAC services to homes in Oklahoma City and surrounding areas with regular maintenance checks to ensure that your HVAC system is up-to-date and functioning properly. We also offer HVAC replacement and AC repair services so contact us today for all your HVAC repair, replacement, and installation needs.