The HVAC Zoning Guide for Empty Nesters

May 07, 2019

If you’re on the path to an empty nest, you’ve got plenty on your mind. You have more free time in your future you’ll find ways to spend. You’re likely a little worried about the kids being out on their own for the first time. One thing you might want to put on that list of things to think about: A recently 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 notice is some of your utility costs will decrease. After all, there are less people consuming the resources in your home—from water and food to electricity.

But even though you’re using a reduced amount of energy, that doesn’t mean you couldn’t be more efficient with the energy you do use. With some open spaces, you’re paying to heat and cool rooms you’re not even using. Shutting the doors and vents in those rooms won’t solve that—in fact, you’ll likely use more energy and put a strain on your HVAC going that route. Zoning is a possible solution.

What is Zoning?

A zoned heating and cooling system manages the air in your HVAC to focus on specific regions—or zones—in your home. They use dampers to divert the air where it’s needed. In homes where temperature control is a struggle, zoning systems can be even more helpful. Rather than fight 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 regulate them individually. When the kids are at their own place, you can set the temperature in their area 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 expenses using a zoning system. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, you could experience a savings of up to 35 percent when you use zoning with a programmable thermostat.

When Should I Consider Zoning?

Zoning systems are an ideal fit for empty nesters who want to save energy while keeping up with their home comfort. They’re also a great choice for homes where:

  • Temperature differs noticeably between different floors or spaces in the home.
  • Large windows are a part of regularly used rooms.
  • High ceilings make it challenging to control temperatures.

Will Zoning Work with My Existing HVAC?

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

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

Every home’s heating and cooling set up is different. The professionals at Airmen HVAC Service can help you decide whether zoning makes sense for you.

An empty nest is a big change—so it’s an ideal time to reexamine your heating and cooling system to see if it’s meeting your needs. At Airmen HVAC Service, our goal is to confirm that you’re comfortable and your system is operating as efficiently as possible. If you want to hear more on how a zoned system could help, contact us at 570-322-3131 or schedule an appointment with us online.