Use HVAC Zoning to Beat the Virginia Heat

April 2, 2020by admin
thermostat in home kitchen

We run our air conditioners constantly all summer here in Virginia — but are we wasting energy and money in the process? The answer is almost always YES! We can’t even begin to explain how much energy (and money!) goes to waste during the hot, humid months. You probably don’t want to turn your home into a sauna, though, so finding a middle ground is your best bet!

HVAC zoning is a great option for keeping your home cool and comfortable during the summer, while also focusing on being efficient. If you’ve never zoned your house, though, you might be confused about where to start. In this post, we’ll discuss how this simple modification can make a huge impact on energy use.

What Is HVAC Zoning?

When it comes to saving on energy costs, precision matters. You only want to send cooled air to the rooms that you’re actually using, rather than wasting it on unoccupied spaces — but how can you be so specific? By implementing a zoning system.

It works by dividing your home into different areas. This is practical because your kitchen and bathrooms might have different cooling needs than your bedrooms or finished basement. Each of these “zones” is then regulated by its own thermostat, allowing you to control when and how much those spaces are cooled.

To take it a step further, your energy-saving efforts can be enhanced by using programmable thermostats. You’ll be able to create a schedule for each zone in your home based on how often and when it is used. Never venture upstairs until bedtime? Don’t cool those areas until an hour before you usually turn in for the night. Have rooms that face the sun and get exceptionally warm? Put them in their own zone and increase the amount of cool air they get during the day. It really is that easy to save energy and money while improving overall comfort inside your home.

Who Should Consider a Multi-Zone System?

A zoned HVAC system can be beneficial in almost every home. Tired of arguing with the people you live with about the temperature in the house? They can keep their room at their comfort level, and you can control your own.

bright room with big windows
Olga Ionina/

Aside from personal preferences, though, zoning can be very beneficial for multi-story homes. In fact, some people make it simple by splitting their upper and lower floors into zones. If yours is a multi-story dwelling, zoning could be especially useful if you have any of the following:

  • High or vaulted ceilings
  • Finished basement or attic
  • Rarely used spare bedrooms
  • Any large windows, including bay windows or picture windows

The number of zones you’ll need will depend on your home’s configuration, the number of people in your household, and your lifestyle. Speaking with a trained professional will help you come up with a strategy that works best!

What Are The Benefits to HVAC Zoning?

saving money

Installing an HVAC zoning system is a significant investment. Before you make any changes, therefore, you’ll want to make sure that it’s worth the time, money, and effort. Here are some of the key benefits to creating zones in your home:





  • Lower energy costs. When you only cool (or heat!) the parts of your home that need it, you’ll be using energy more efficiently.
  • Personalized comfort. Eliminate hot and cold spots in your home by controlling the temperature in each zone based on your preferences and needs.
  • Extends HVAC lifespan. By reducing the burden on your hard working cooling system, you could extend the life of your unit.

Every home and family is different, which is why it’s important to do the research ahead of time. That being said, once you’ve installed the right zoning system, it probably won’t take very long for you to appreciate the benefits.

HVAC Zoning Systems in Richmond

While it’s easiest to install an HVAC zoning system to a home while it’s being built, adding to an existing home is also fairly straightforward. It’s important, however, to ensure that it’s done properly and that the work is performed by trained professionals.

W.G. Speeks has been proudly serving homes in the Greater Richmond Region for more than 75 years, so we know a thing or two about HVAC zoning systems. Our technicians are NATE-certified and committed to our incredible community. We also offer a no-risk, free consultation with our experts, so that you can feel confident about the process and the quality of the service we provide. Give us a call today — we’re here to help!

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