AirBoss or HeatPumPro: Which is Right for Your Application?

Which zoning system is best? Spoiler alert: we don’t really have an answer for that. The best zone control panel for your application depends on what you need. Here are 3 main questions to keep in mind:

  1. How do you want the staging of the HVAC equipment achieved?
  2. How many zones will the designed system have?
  3. What built-in features are applicable and important for the application?

In our blog, we will dive into these three questions and the key differences between the operation of the AirBoss and HeatPumPro zone control panels. We’ll help you decide which zoning system is best for your application.

Staging with AirBoss and HeatPumPro

Both the AirBoss and HeatPumPro will be able to control any standard 24v-controlled HVAC equipment.  From the most basic single-stage conventional to two-stage dual-fuel applications, both panels are compatible. The key difference is how the panels respond to the calls they receive from the thermostat. If staging is important in your application, here’s how to figure out which zoning system is best.

AirBoss® Zoning Panel

The AirBoss controls the system’s staging based on what the thermostat calls for. The zone control panel follows the thermostat’s lead and outputs accordingly. For example, if your thermostat calls for second stage heat, the panel will output a second stage heat call to your HVAC equipment.

AirBoss’s operation is beneficial for customers that like to utilize high-end thermostats to track fuel usage and energy efficiency. It works well for those who want to know exactly how their equipment is operating day by day.

HeatPumPro® Zoning Control

The HeatPumPro takes this a step further and removes the staging from the thermostats, giving the panel complete control. One of the key features of the HeatPumPro panel is the ability to use just single stage heat/cool thermostats for any application, even while the panel provides up to 4 heat 2 cool on the outputs. The panel just needs a heat, cool, or fan call from the thermostat. Then it uses a combination of run time and leaving air temperature (LAT) readings to deliver the desired call in the most efficient way possible.

How Many Zones Do You Need?

This is an easily answered question but changes drastically on a case-by-case basis. The key thing to keep in mind when designing a system is to not microzone or create zones that are too small, since this can be detrimental to the HVAC equipment. We encourage you to take advantage of our class on Proper Zoning System Design. It’s available on-site at a location of your choice, or in video form in our Pro Portal.

Zone Configurations Possible

So which zoning system is best for your number of zones? Here are the details.

The HeatPumPro comes in either a 2, 3, or 4 zone configuration which makes it perfectly suited for the residential market. Most homes fit well within these parameters.

The AirBoss, however, can be optimized for cases where more zones are needed. AirBoss is available in 2, 3, 4, 6, or 8 zone configurations. AirBoss is often the appropriate choice for light commercial applications.

Both of the panels can take advantage of our AloneZone feature as well. AloneZone can be used to add another zone to the panel, but these zones cannot activate the HVAC equipment. They rely on any other zone to call before equipment operation is activated.

What Features Do Your Customers Need?

The final thing to consider is what features you need. An application may have specific needs, and your customer may want certain features too. Here are some of the differences between HeatPumPro and AirBoss.

Key Features of the AirBoss

As previously mentioned, the AirBoss relies on the thermostats and has less logic built into it than HeatPumPro. Still, AirBoss does come with a few key features that you need to know.

  • The Leaving Air Sensor gives you temperature limits for high and low limits, with no secondary controls needed.
  • 2nd-stage heating and cooling delay timers that can be utilized instead of two-stage thermostats.
  • Has a Master Zone Switch with a Set Back Stat terminal that can be utilized in the commercial atmosphere when all occupants leave for the day. All equipment controls can be reverted to zone 1’s thermostat, allowing for energy savings.

Key Features of HeatPumPro

The HeatPumPro, on the other hand, is a different animal. It’s packed with features to get the most energy efficiency out of the HVAC equipment.

  • Built-in LAT (leaving air temperature) and OAT (outside air temperature) sensors
  • Settings that allow you to control Resistance heat lockouts, and Heat and Cool stage thresholds that affect the equipment staging
  • Allows you to set the desired zone weight or percentage of ductwork on each zone
  • AH threshold setting controls the percentage of the ductwork opened before the HVAC equipment can call for second stage operation. This allows you to utilize smaller zones while eliminating or decreasing the size or need for a bypass.

Contact Us

Figuring out what panel is right for you is a simple enough question when you know what your customer’s desired results are and what features and benefits are important to them. If you need help with application design or anything else, please contact us at or at (800)611-8312.

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