Find The Best Size For Your Residential HVAC Unit In 3 Steps

Monday, July 18th, 2016
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A residential HVAC unit must be properly sized in order to provide a comfortable temperature and reduce energy use. The unit will short cycle if it is too big. Your HVAC unit will be excessively worn down by this short cycling, as it turns on and off in brief intervals. If the unit is too small, the HVAC unit will run indefinitely and still fail to bring the home to a proper temperature.

You will need to calculate the proper size of an HVAC unit for your home in order to ensure proper functioning. The following instructions will help you determine the best size for your residential HVAC unit.

Measure the space inside your home

Start by measuring the square footage of the space you are wanting the HVAC to cool within your home. To measure square footage, multiply the length by the width. If there are different rooms, measure each room then combine the square footages together.

Calculate the cooling load

Next, you will need to calculate the cooling load. Take the total square footage and divide by 450. The HVAC unit’s cooling load is measured in tons. You need one ton of cooling for every 450 square feet. For example, if your space is about 1350 square feet, divide that number by 450. You will end up with roughly 3 tons.

Determine the heating load

Now you will need to determine the heating load of your HVAC unit. You can calculate this by multiplying your square footage by the British Thermal Units (BTUs) needed per square foot. The BTUs needed will depend on whether you live in a warm or cold climate. If you live in a warmer climate, use 25 to 30 BTUs for every square foot. If you are in a colder climate, use 35 to 40 BTUs for every square foot.

Warmer climates will include areas such as the southern United States. Colder climates are best defined as the central United States and the southern area of some northern states. If you live in the extreme northern states, you may need to calculate a little differently. These will be the coldest areas, so they will need a higher BTU for the calculation. Use 45 BTUs per square feet if you live in an extremely cold climate. For an example, you will need about 33,500 BTUs in a warm climate and about 60,500 in the coldest climates.

By following these guidelines, you can find the right size for your residential HVAC unit. If you need help choosing or installing a new system, contact the experts at Allen’s Tri-State Mechanical Inc. We offer heavy industrial, commercial, and residential services throughout the Texas Panhandle and Tri-State area. Feel free to give us a call at (806) 376-8345 or Contact Us via email for more information. You can also stop by our location at 404 S. Hayden St. in Amarillo, Texas.