A zoned HVAC system is a type of HVAC system which allows different areas of a building to be heated or cooled independently of one another. This is achieved through the installation of dampers and multiple thermostats. A thermostat in each desired “zone” of the building allows each area’s temperature to be controlled individually by the corresponding thermostat. Meanwhile, the dampers can increase or restrict airflow into a particular zone as needed.
Despite the end-goal of independent climate control in each zone, the zones of modern HVAC systems can also cooperate in order to improve efficiency. In the case of a two-story building, for example, the different zones may be programmed to account for rising heat from one to the other, and adjust airflow accordingly.
Benefits of Zoning
A key benefit of a zoned HVAC system is efficiency. Not only is it able to be uniquely adjusted for the comfort of those within the building, it is also often more economic. Rather than heating or cooling the entire building, occupants can save energy and money by only adjusting the thermostats of areas that are in use.
While the upfront cost is not negligible, a zoned system can be a valuable long-term investment, especially for large, multi-level structures, such as office or apartment buildings. It is also often relatively simple to convert a standard HVAC setup into a zoned system.
While the installation process is fairly straightforward, it is best to leave that to your local, certified HVAC technicians. They will be able to assess the building and determine how they can maximize efficiency for the zoned system, and/or how they can most effectively integrate it with an existing HVAC setup.