72 Degrees of Hickory Blog

72 Degrees of Hickory Blog

72 Degrees of Hickory Blog

Zoning in on Cold Weather Comfort

Matthew Stewart - Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Is your family avoiding spending time in your basement living area because it’s just too cold?  

Are you cranking up the thermostat to make your vaulted family room warmer, only to retire to a stifling bedroom that night?

Do you want to cut costs on your heating bills?

Then you may want to think about zoning.

Some home designs make it tough for a traditional heating system to work efficiently. Maybe you have a game room above your garage, a bathroom above a cold crawl space, or bedrooms on separate floors. It’s impossible to heat all of these areas evenly, and if you’re trying to do so, you may be throwing money out the window.

How does a zoning system work?

The zoning system allows your furnace to heat only the areas that need it—allowing you to enjoy more comfortable temperatures throughout your home.

Let’s say your family likes to spend most of its time in the basement. Instead of heating the entire main floor while trying to stay warm downstairs, zoning would let you set the basement temperature to 70 while keeping the main floor at 60. When you get ready to go up, you can raise the main floor temperature and lower the basement. That way, you’re not paying to heat the areas you’re not using.

A zoning system consists of a control, automatic motorized dampers and temperature sensors that work with your heating system. The dampers are placed inside the supply ducts to control the airflow to specific areas of your home. The temperature sensors are located in the separate zones of your home. It’s similar to having a separate thermostat in each area communicating with your heating system—allowing each zone to be heated independently.

When you request that any of the zones be heated, the thermostat signals your heating system. The zone control determines which zones need heating based on the temperature sensors in each zone. The dampers are automatically closed in the supply lines to those zones which do not need heating and opened in those that do need heating.

How much can I save?

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, system zoning can save homeowners up to 30 percent on a typical heating and cooling bill. Considering that heating and cooling account for 40 percent of the average household's utility costs, this amount of savings can add up to a lot. Because guest rooms and other seldom-used rooms don't need to be heated constantly, system zoning lets you save money by heating those rooms only when necessary.

Will I need to do major reconstruction on my home?

No. Typically, a zoning system can be installed within a day or two and will not require any reconstruction of drywall or changing your heating and air conditioning system. The dampers will slide into what you already have for duct work, and your contractor will set up the panel and run all the tubing to the dampers and wire to the thermostats.

What areas should I consider zoning?

Before you meet with your contractor to discuss zoning your home, determine which rooms and areas would benefit from having customized control. Group rooms together with similar usage patterns or areas that may be tough to heat. Keep these things in mind when you’re laying out your zones:

  • Try keeping each of your coverage areas the same size.
  • Large rooms such as the master bedroom, a bonus room or a basement might make up their own zone.
  • If your home has multiple stories, combine rooms on the same level.
  • Rooms with common usage patterns such as bedrooms should be together, if they are on the same level.
  • Rooms that are shaded could become one zone.

Does zoning work for cooling my home as well?

Yes! When warmer weather comes, you’ll be able to enjoy cooler upstairs bedrooms. You’ll spend less money trying to keep your skylight-filled living room cool. And you’ll keep your whole family more comfortable all summer.

How can I find out more?

Since our main goal is to get your home’s temperature just right, we’ll be happy to talk to you about the benefits of a zoning system and how it will work in your home.  Contact us at 72 Degrees today!

National Energy Awareness Month

Matthew Stewart - Saturday, September 28, 2013

Have you thought about how much energy your home uses lately? Well, October is National Energy Awareness Month, so now is a great time to start. If you think you’ve been using more energy than necessary, learning how to manage your home’s heating and cooling zone may be just the solution you need.

Knowing how to keep your home’s temperature efficient through zoning can not only save on energy, but also on money. And now that fall has begun and the weather can rapidly change, zoning will keep costs to a minimum.

So what is zoning, exactly? A zoning system lets you have control over temperatures in different rooms individually instead of the house as a whole. So when you’re in one room, set the temperature to your liking, but when you leave that room be sure to turn off the air conditioning or heat. If you’re diligent about using your zoning system, it can really make a difference for your home’s energy and your wallet.

Contact us to learn more about how you can conserve energy by zoning.

Let’s “Talk” Thermostats

Matthew Stewart - Monday, March 25, 2013

Thermostats are necessary for your temperature comfort inside your home. But they can also be frustrating if they don’t work well. That’s where the Talking Thermostat comes in.

72 Degrees is an exclusive dealer for the Talking Thermostat, which is designed to be the most user-friendly thermostat available. It is capable of guiding the user through set-up and temperature settings and also comes with a Lifetime Warranty. Here are some other benefits of this innovative thermostat:

  • EZ Read Display: Oversized LCD characters make it easy to read the display, which can also be illuminated.
  • EZ Talk Thru Programming Instructions: Verbal set-up help for every setting you want to change.
  • Dirty Filter Alert: It displays and says a warning when the air filter should be checked.
  • Low Battery Alert: It displays and says a warning when batteries should be replaced.
  • Temperature & Setting Report: The thermostat announces indoor temperature and settings when the user presses the Report key.
  • Freeze Protection: The system calls for heat at 40 degrees Fahrenheit even if batteries are dead or not inserted.
  • Compressor Protection: A 5-minute delay prevents short cycling damage.
  • “Armchair” Programming: Programming instructions can be entered before mounting on a wall.
  • Quick Program Override: You can easily override any programmed temperature.

 

Contact 72 Degrees to learn more about the convenient Talking Thermostat.

Get in the Zone

Matthew Stewart - Sunday, February 17, 2013

What kind of zone, you ask? Actually, we’re talking about your home’s heating and cooling zone. Knowing how to make your home’s temperature efficient by zoning is important to saving money and energy. And during this time of year when the weather can be very fickle, zoning will help minimize expense.

Instead of needing to have the whole house be a set temperature, a zoning system allows you to control the temperatures of different areas in the home. When you’re in one area, set that temperature according to your preferences, but be sure to turn off the heat or air conditioning in a vacant area so that room is not receiving unnecessary heat or air.

Maybe you have a workout room that you like to keep cooler than the rest of the house. So instead of cooling the entire house when you want to use that room, simply cool that one area with a zoning system in place. And there’s no expensive installation either.

A zoning system will make a difference on your electric bills all year long. Plus, it will make it easier for you to heat or cool a specific area than without the system, giving you more comfort and flexibility.

Let us know if a zoning system is right for you.

Congratulations to Will Jenkins our Player of the Week

Matthew Stewart - Friday, October 28, 2011

This week's 72 Degrees WHKY Player of the Week is Will Jenkins. He is a second time winner in the 2011 season! Will had a stellar game with 321 yards and four touchdowns on 16 carries. He also had a kickoff return for 23 yards. On the defensive side of the ball, Will had five tackles and a fumble recovery for a touchdown. Nice game, Will!

Are You In the Zone?

Matthew Stewart - Thursday, October 20, 2011
The heating and cooling zone that is...if you haven't heard of it, then maybe you should. Zoning your home for efficient heating and cooling is as practical these days as programmable thermostats.
 
What is zoning? Well, it is an improvement to your home's heating and cooling system. Essentially, it allows you, the homeowner, to be in control of the temperatures throughout your home, rather than vice versa. You can set the 'zone' for that particular area of the home to higher or lower based on the needs of the area. For instance, the nursery of a baby's room may need to stay warmer, while you may want a home gym space to feel cooler. Is there a spare bedroom that never gets used? Perfect. You can keep that room at a different temperature than an area of the house that does get used frequently. The best part? A heating and cooling zoning system will save you energy and money. No need to do costly construction or installation either. Click here to learn if a zoning heating and cooling system is right for you and your home.

Cooler Temps Are Just Around the Corner...Are You Prepared?

Matthew Stewart - Friday, September 16, 2011
It's that time of the year to start preparing for cooler temperatures. Energy costs are certainly increasing across the country. Have you inspected your furnace? If it is an older heating unit, you may want to consider adding a newer furnace. There are many benefits to adding a new furnace to your older home. Studies show that a newer furnace can reduce heating energy bills by as much as 40%.What's more, newer models run more efficiently, which is better for the environment overall. They are generally quieter models as well, making it much more pleasant for you and your family. Many new heating systems exist to help reduce your heating costs. Although there's an initial investment, the energy savings over time will more than pay for the newer model.
 
If you'd like to consider your heating options, give an expert a call. We're happy to assess your current model and offer you upgrade choices that will best meet your needs.

Will Zoning Your Home Help Control Your Energy Costs?

Matthew Stewart - Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Absolutely. Zoning allows you to only heat and cool certain areas of your home, according to your needs. For instance, a home office or the baby's room may need different cooling needs than a utility room or bedroom. Zoning just allows you to divide your home into categories based on their individual heating and cooling needs similar to your lighting. Not only does a zoning system save on your energy bills, but also allows you to make every room's temperature just right. This makes everyone in your home happy!
 
To find out more about a zoning system for your home, click here.

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