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Save Scratch with Zoned A.C.

Imagine if every light bulb within your home was operated using only one switch. This might be a nice scenario when it’s bedtime, but during the evening it would be impractical and play out as a giant waste of electricity with every bulb illuminated. This “one switch” example is a metaphor that gets bandied about by HVAC professionals when differentiating between central and zoned HVAC systems. Central A.C. is the all-lights-on approach, whereas a zoned system is the procedure by which you only cool or heat the parts of a home that are occupied or warrant it.

By definition, a zoned control system is any cooling or heating system that governs different climate areas, or zones, inside your home; instead of a process whereby the entire house maintains one consistent temperature throughout. These zones are managed by independent temperature regulators (usually thermostats) located in their respective area, or they can be linked to a main control panel, in effect allowing remote manipulation

One point that may need clarification is that all zoned HVAC systems are central air systems, however not all central air systems are zoned. This is noteworthy because some people with standard central air may shut vents in rooms that are unoccupied, and though this will tweak temperature to some extent, this produces unnecessary strain on an HVAC unit.

Regulated by electronic thermostats that interface with modulating dampers, temperature is automatically adjusted to a specific zone’s desired level. This is significant because the HVAC is not generating heating or cooling for areas that don’t need it. The system is operating at peak efficiency, which means less inefficiency in terms of energy consumption. It’s not uncommon for consumers who install zoned systems to undergo an approximate 30% decrease in monthly energy expenditures.

Upgrading to zoned central air can primarily be done in one of two ways. Ductwork equipped with dampers can be deployed when installing a new HVAC system, or these dampers can be retro-fitted into an existing duct complex along accompanied by corresponding thermostats.

The modern convenience of zoned systems can’t be understated. Being able to set temperatures from one spot, even your couch, makes it a breeze. And everyone in their separate quarters can have the temperature attuned to their own level of comfort, so there’s no haggling over too hot or too cold. What’s more, the benefit of zoned HVAC is the joy of substantial savings every month on your energy bill.

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