Do You Need a Zone Control System?

Late spring and early summer are good times to assess the state of your air conditioner. That starts with ensuring that it can operate exactly as intended, and won’t give you any nasty surprises in the middle of a heat wave. A good maintenance session can help with that, along with timely repairs in the event there’s a lingering problem to resolve. But once the system’s basic reliability is settled, you need to focus on making it as efficient as possible:  allowing it to do its job without spending any more money than is necessary.

You can take a few basic steps to do this yourself, such as putting weather stripping under the doors to prevent cool air from leaking, or turning off the system at night and opening the windows to let in the cool air. But if you’d like to take more formal steps to make your central air conditioner more efficient, we strongly recommend installing a zone control system in order to improve your system’s usefulness. Here’s how it works.


Centralized air relies on a series of ducts to carry the cool air: branching off from the AC system itself into the various rooms in your home. It’s an effective way to cool your house evenly, but it has one drawback: the temperature you set is the temperature the whole house gets, with little variation or adjustment.

Zone control systems aim to address that by installing a series of shutters at key points in the ducts. That, in turn, divides your home into sections, and by opening or closing the shutters, each section can be heated or cooled independently of the rest of the home.

That, in turn, provides a pair of benefits: both connected to the same basic function.


Setting one temperature for the entire house isn’t always ideal. Say, for instance, that you’re cooking dinner and the heat from the stove is raising the temperature in the kitchen. You want to turn the air up to compensate. But your spouse is watching television in another part of the house, and turning up the air would cause him or her to freeze. Zone control lets both of you set the temperature you need to be comfortable without having to squabble over the setting.


If you apply that ability properly, it can do more than just improve your comfort levels. Many parts of the home go unused during the say: bedrooms, for example, or computer rooms for working in the evening. Zone control systems let you turn off the air to those sections while still running it in parts of the home that are occupied. As a result, your air conditioning bills will drop tremendously, saving you a great deal of money without skimping on our ability to keep the home comfortable. It cuts down on wear and tear too, helping you reduce the risk of breakdowns and extend the life of your system.

For zone control installation and repair in Lake Oswego, OR call Western Heating & Cooling!