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Options for Zone Heating and Cooling: Zone Controls or Ductless Mini Splits

A dilemma that homes face when it comes to heating and cooling them is the “all-or-nothing” operation of many HVAC systems. When a furnace, heat pump, or air conditioner turns on, where does the conditioned air go? To every vent in every room. This is convenient, but it isn’t efficient. Imagine the amount of electrical waste in a home where every single lightbulb started burning when a single switch was turned on. The energy waste for a standard HVAC system may not be as extreme as this example, but waste is waste… you won’t be happy seeing that on your bill, no matter where it comes from.

Are there ways to avoid COOL IT ALL! or HEAT IT ALL! in your house? Yes, actually. There are two separate choices to consider to create “zone heating and cooling” where you only need to heat or cool individual parts of the house:

Zone Control Systems

Let’s say that you already have a network of ducts in your home that connect to either a combination furnace/AC or a heat pump. To enjoy zoning with this set-up requires having professionals integrate a zone control system into the existing HVAC system. Dampers fit into the ducts to close off particular vents, with separate thermostats to control them. The heater and AC need to be adapted to use less power when the dampers close off parts of the house, allowing you to save energy.

Ductless Mini Split Heat Pumps

If you are building a new house or you are planning to remodel to eliminate ducts entirely, the ductless mini split is an excellent choice, not only because it permits zone heating and cooling, but also because it’s a generally energy-efficient system. These heat pumps operate through a series of air handlers that are mounted on the walls of rooms. Each air handler has its own controls, so only the ones that need to run will operate at once.

To learn more about zone control systems and ductless mini splits in Apex, NC, call Raleigh Heating & Air, Inc. We’re an authorized Diamond Contractor installing Mitsubishi ductless mini splits.

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