Zoning is a subject that comes up time and time again this time of year because many homeowners experience uneven cooling throughout their residence. In most of these cases, a homes forced air system uses a single thermostat to control the entire homes heating and cooling needs; which can be tricky if trying to heat and cool a multistory residence or have rooms that receive different levels of use.
Many times we’ll see this in homes with finished basements in which the thermostat has been installed on the main floor. Typically, the basement area will stay cooler than the thermostats set point during the summer months because hot air rises; while the main floor will continue to cool until the thermostat has reached its set point. This leads to unnecessary cooling of the basement and as a result sacrificed comfort, higher energy consumption and larger utility bills.
With a zoning system you can control temperatures for specific areas, or “zones” in your home, rather than heating or cooling the whole house to the same temperature. Individual thermostats control air flow with motorized dampers that are installed in the ducts or at the air outlets for each zone. So when a zone’s thermostat calls for heating or cooling, the motorized dampers will either open or close allowing that zone to maintain the set temperature and provide a greater level of comfort throughout the house.
To see how zoning works, check out this Honeywell Zoning video.