Empty nesters discussing finances

The HVAC Zoning Guide for Empty Nesters

If you’re on your way to an empty nest, you’ve got a lot 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 thing you might want to add to that list of things to think about: A newly emptied nest changes the way you can use energy efficiently.

Once your kids are all packed up and gone, one of the first things you’ll notice is some of your utility costs will decrease. After all, there are fewer people consuming the resources in your home—from water and food to electricity.

But even though you’re using less energy, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be more efficient with the energy you do utilize. With some open rooms, you’re spending money to heat and cool rooms you’re not even using. Shutting the doors and vents in those rooms won’t fix that—in fact, you’ll possibly use more energy and put a strain on your HVAC choosing that option. Zoning is a possible solution.

What is Zoning?

A zoned heating and cooling system manages the air in your HVAC to narrow in 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 difficult, zoning systems can be particularly helpful. Rather than deal with just one part of the home that is too hot or cold, zoning allows 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 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 Ponder Zoning?

Zoning systems are a great fit for empty nesters who want to save energy while keeping their space just as comfortable as before. They’re also a smart choice for homes where:

  • Temperature differs radically between different floors or areas of the home.
  • Large windows are a part of regularly used rooms.
  • High ceilings make it difficult to regulate temperatures.

Will Zoning Work with My Existing HVAC?

Typically, 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 expenses. However, there are systems for single-stage equipment that also let you earn the benefits of zoning.

And for circumstances 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 different. The professionals at Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning can help you determine whether zoning makes sense for you.

An empty nest is a big change—so it’s a great time to reevaluate your heating and cooling system to see if it’s meeting your needs. At Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning, 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 800-COOLING or arrange an appointment with us online.

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