Zoning Systems: Their Design Will Dictate Performance
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Zoning Systems: Their Design Will Dictate Performance


Are you considering installing and using a zoned HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) system in your Portland-area home? Zoning systems can increase your comfort and energy efficiency significantly. However, to attain the full benefit from a zoning system, you must ensure that it is designed properly.

Dividing your home into zones allows you to adjust for the different heating and cooling needs in different areas. For that to work, though, each zone needs to contain rooms that have similar temperature profiles. For instance, you don’t want a room that is typically too hot to be in the same zone with a room that is too cold.

To set up a proper zoning system, follow these design rules:

  • Have different zones for upstairs and downstairs rooms. Since hot air rises and cool air sinks, upstairs rooms will always need more air conditioning and less heating than the rooms directly below them.
  • For rooms with large windows, do not put an east-facing room in the same zone with a west-facing room. Such rooms have different heating and cooling needs depending on the time of day, and putting them in different zones allows the zoning system to compensate for the differences in morning and afternoon sunlight.
  • Keep bedrooms separate from living areas. That way, when you are asleep, you can set back the thermostat in the unoccupied living areas to save energy, and do the same in the bedrooms during the day. Programmable thermostats can be a big help in this area.
  • Use different zones for different types of construction. This doesn’t apply in every home, but if your house has been added on to at some point, or you have transformed a garage or porch into a living area, those additions are likely to be constructed of different materials with different insulating properties. That means they may require more (or less) heating and cooling than the original parts of the house.

There are other factors that play into zoning system performance as well, such as duct design, and the proper placement of thermostats and air vents. For an expertly-designed system that will provide the biggest benefits for your home, contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling. We’ve proudly served residential and commercial customers since 1976

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