Whether you’re building a new home or updating your existing HVAC system, there is one question you’re bound to ask: what size air conditioner do I need? Selecting the right AC size is a balancing act. Too large, and you could face poor humidity control and excessive energy bills. Too small, and the unit might struggle to maintain comfortable temperatures on scorching hot days. Proper air conditioner sizing is crucial to enjoy an efficient, cost-effective and comfortable cooling experience.
Ensuring your air conditioner provides the right cooling capacity is a matter of comfort and energy savings. Here’s why you shouldn’t merely guess the ideal air conditioner size:
Cooling capacity is measured in British thermal units (BTUs). A BTU is a standard unit of energy that conveys the amount of heat an air conditioner can remove per hour. Most room air conditioners range from 5,000 to 18,000 BTUs. Because central air conditioners are larger, they’re typically measured in tons. A one-ton system is equivalent to 12,000 BTUs. Most central AC units range from 1 to 5 tons.
For window or portable air conditioners, sizing primarily depends on the room’s square footage. Measure the area—length x width—and match it to the appropriate BTUs:
These general guidelines don’t account for factors like interior heat gain or sun exposure. For a more precise calculation, seek expert advice from Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing.
Determining the correct size of central air conditioner begins with the home’s square footage, but accurate sizing requires a more in-depth look. HVAC professionals rely on load calculations detailed in Manual J to determine a home’s specific cooling requirements. Here are the factors that come into play:
Besides knowing what size air conditioner you need, consider these additional factors when installing a new air conditioner:
Finding the right air conditioner size can be overwhelming. The Experts at Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing are here to help. We provide custom cooling solutions to optimize home comfort, efficiency and energy savings.
From calculating your precise cooling requirements to helping you navigate different brands and efficiency ratings, we’re with you at every step. For help choosing the perfect air conditioner for your home in the U.S., call 866-397-3787 today to schedule your appointment with Service Experts Heating, Air Conditioning & Plumbing.
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