If you're buying a new home here in Auburn, Alabama, or replacing your existing HVAC system with new equipment, you should make sure that your unit is properly sized. An experienced HVAC technician can determine the ideal capacity for your heating or air conditioning system or heat pump. A properly sized HVAC system can save energy, increase your comfort, prevent costly, inconvenient breakdowns, and improve your indoor air quality.
How Sizing Works
Instead of making an estimate using only your house's square footage, a professional can conduct a Manual J or residential load calculation. The Air Conditioning Contractors of America created this method, and it considers the size and number of windows, the amount and type of insulation, the amount of shade outdoors, the number of people living in your home, the number of floors, and more.
There's a similar set of guidelines for ductwork called Manual D or residential duct design, and it uses much of the same information as Manual J. If you decide to renovate your home, you should have your HVAC system sized by an expert to determine if an upgrade is necessary.
If your air conditioner is too big, it will waste energy. Larger systems are more difficult and costly to install, as well. A properly sized system can work more efficiently, lowering your bills and your carbon footprint. An HVAC load calculation is also an excellent opportunity for you to find out which improvements to your home can help you save energy and stay comfortable.
For example, adding thick curtains to windows that get a lot of sun in the afternoon will make cooling your home easier. Your technician could recommend new insulation, ceiling fans, programmable thermostats, or other improvements as well.
If your HVAC system is too small, it will keep running constantly and struggle to condition your home. Some rooms might always feel too warm, and you could end up with high utility bills. An air conditioner with too much capacity can cool your home very quickly. This means that it stays on for a few minutes until the temperature matches the setting on your thermostat. Then, it turns off automatically until the temperature rises again. You'll have to deal with frequent temperature fluctuations plus the system will not have enough running time to eliminate humidity.
An undersized system that runs continuously will wear out faster than a properly sized unit. You could have frequent breakdowns that require expensive repairs or may even need a replacement AC system. Equipment that's oversized is also less durable because it comes on and turns off more often than it should.
Better Indoor Air Quality
Your air conditioner should control your home's humidity along with lowering its temperature. A system that's too small or too large could make your home feel hot and stuffy. Oversized units don't keep running long enough to remove moisture from your indoor air. You could notice musty smells, water damage, or biological growth on your ceilings, walls, and furniture.
Oversized air conditioners also can't filter the air in your home well. Air only moves through your air filter when the system is on, so an oversized unit can't catch as many contaminants. You could notice more dust on your floors and furniture. An air conditioner that's sized correctly can improve your indoor air quality, keep you and your family healthier, and make your home more welcoming and comfortable.
Sensigreen Mechanical is a Carrier Factory Authorized Dealer, and we received Carrier's prestigious President's Award in 2018 and 2019. All of our technicians have a North American Technician Excellence (NATE) certification. We can help you choose an air conditioner that's the best size for your home. For outstanding, friendly service, call us at (334) 366-9237. We have more than a decade of experience, and we're the most reliable, sensible choice for indoor comfort systems in the area.
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