Evaluating the Size of Your Air Conditioner

Alt Image Tag 1 Air Conditioning Units in Yard

Officially, summer is still a few months away, but many Gainesville homeowners aren’t waiting for that first scorcher. Instead, they’re making plans to ensure their homes stay cool and comfortable for the entire cooling season by installing a new air conditioner. If you’re shopping for a new AC unit, you’ll want to make sure you get the right size. The wrong size won’t provide the optimum comfort level throughout your home. Also, you’ll end up with a system that can’t work efficiently. Specialists from HVAC companies in Gainesville, GA, can help you select the ideal system for your unique needs. Read today’s post for a better understanding of how to evaluate air conditioner size.

About BTUS and TONS

When you talk shop with an HVAC specialist, they’ll mention BTUs and tons. BTU stands for British thermal unit, and it measures the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. Air conditioners for residential use range in size, starting at 1.5 tons and topping out at 5 tons. The HVAC industry sizes units in half-ton increments. If you’ve ever thought about the weight of an elephant, which is about 4 tons, you might wonder how you’d fit something that size in your home. In this case, ton doesn’t refer to actual size. It relates to cooling capacity. Determining size means taking a few measurements, which will be talked about next.

Measure the Room

One way to evaluate your air conditioner needs is to measure the square footage in your home. Calculate the total square footage of any areas you use as living spaces. You won’t include the square footage of your garage, but if you use your basement or attic for living space, you would include them in the calculation. Divide the square footage by 600. The result gives you an estimate of the tonnage you need for your AC unit. You can estimate the tons you need on your own, but before you buy your air conditioner, let your HVAC team do a professional calculation.

A Professional Opinion

Installing the right size means your air conditioner will work efficiently. Estimates are fine, but accuracy trumps guesstimates. You need your HVAC representative to do the Manual J, which is a professional load calculation. Most companies include it as part of the free estimate to install a new central air system. Installers use either a whole house or room by room calculation.

AC Unit Outside House

Why Size Matters

If you’re thinking about power, you might think the bigger, the better. Or, if you’re considering the budget, you may believe the smaller size will save you money. For most homes, a 2 or 2.5-ton unit works well. Calling a company that specializes in sales, service, and HVAC maintenance in Gainesville, GA, eliminates the guesswork. Contact the team at Gainesville Mechanical today. They’ll come out to your home and give you an accurate reading of your heating and cooling needs.

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