Empty nesters discussing finances

The HVAC Zoning Guide for Empty Nesters

If you’re on the road to an empty nest, you’ve got quite a bit 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 item you might want to put on that list of things to ponder: A recently emptied nest changes the way you can use energy efficiently.

Once the kids are all packed up and on their way, one of the first things you’ll see is some of your energy costs will decrease. After all, there aren’t as many people utilizing the resources in your home—from water and food to electricity.

But even though you’re using less energy, that doesn’t mean you can’t be more efficient with the energy you do use. With some open spaces, you’re racking up expenses to heat and cool areas you’re not even using. Shutting the doors and vents in those rooms won’t resolve that—in fact, you’ll probably use more energy and put a strain on your HVAC choosing that option. Zoning might be just the ticket for you.

What is Zoning?

A zoned heating and cooling system controls the air in your HVAC to narrow in on specific spaces—or zones—in your home. They use dampers to focus the air where it’s needed. In homes where temperature control is difficult, zoning systems can be especially helpful. Rather than battle 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 nice for empty nesters who want to save energy and costs each month. With a zoning system, you can design different zones in your home and control them individually. When the kids are at their own place, you can set the temperature in their space to use less energy. When they come back to visit, you make a small change and it’s like they never left.

Most importantly, you can save energy and money 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 a perfect fit for empty nesters who want to save energy while keeping up with their home comfort. They’re also a good 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?

Usually, zoning works best for homes that have a multi-stage variable capacity HVAC system. This ensures it can operate 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 situations 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 distinctive. The professionals at M & S Heating & Air LLC can help you choose whether zoning makes sense for you.

An empty nest is a big change—so it’s a perfect time to reexamine your heating and cooling system to see if it’s meeting your needs. At M & S Heating & Air LLC, 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 301-363-4699 or arrange an appointment with us online.

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