Home Improvement Dilemma: Replace the Hideous Shag Carpeting, or Save Energy and Money?

Jun 07, 2010, 21:09 ET from ZONEFIRST, Inc.

ELMWOOD PARK, N.J., June 7 /PRNewswire/ -- They may not grace the pages of a home decorating magazine, but "invisible" home improvement projects that save energy and money in a down economy – such as adding zoning to a home's HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) system – are gaining momentum, say industry sources.

HVAC zoning systems allow homeowners to direct the heated or cooled air only to rooms that need it, rather than the whole house. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates zoning, when used in conjunction with a programmable thermostat, can save up to 30% on home energy bills – potentially substantial savings, since a home's HVAC system makes up half of its energy usage, according to the U.S. EPA.

"The great news about zoning is that it not only saves energy – it allows you to feel comfortable in every room of your home," says Richard Foster, president of ZONEFIRST®, a leading manufacturer of zoning products. "So you can say goodbye to that stuffy upper level, or the freezing cold basement you plan to remodel."

Foster points out that zoning is now possible even in existing homes, thanks to advances in wireless technology. "Wireless thermostats and ZONEFIRST's new Plug & Play retrofit dampers allow you to easily and affordably add zoning to almost any existing home," says Foster.

Indoor comfort industry leaders expect to see zoning sales in existing homes continue to climb, a trend reported recently by The Air Conditioning | Heating | Refrigeration NEWS (May 17, 2010).

Home improvement spending is also expected to grow five percent this year, according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA) released by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal have also reported on this trend.

Prices for zone systems vary, and depend on a home's size, and how many zones the home requires. For a ZONEFIRST contractor near you, email info@zonefirst.com or call 1.877.604.1044 (U.S. only).

For over half a century, ZONEFIRST has been the industry leader in zoning. Starting with the development of the first zoning dampers and registers in the 1950s -- and today, with exclusive "plug & play" dampers -- ZONEFIRST has led the way in excellence and continued innovation. For more information, visit www.zonefirst.com.