When trying to decide on the right air conditioner or heating system for your home, knowing what size you need may be the most important part. If you have a system that is too small, it will likely run more than it should. It is trying to heat or cool a home that is exceeds the units capacity. An over-sized unit will turn off and off rapidly, while heating and cooling the home too quickly. This may lead to humidity issues in the home. Both will cause you to lose efficiency, thereby costing you money.
So, how do you know what size your home needs? There are several factors that go into answering that question. It is no longer based, mainly, on square footage. Things that are just as important are cubic footage, the number of windows and what size, the direction the home faces, insulation value, levels, crawlspace and many more.
Every heating and air conditioning contractor should conduct a load calculation on your home before providing you with an estimate. If they don’t, ask why. Ask them how they know the system will be right for your home. If it is based solely on square footage and a good guess, it might be worth it to get an estimate elsewhere for comparison. Most heating and cooling companies will give you a free estimate for installation.
Load calculations can save you money upfront and in the long run. Ensuring that you have a system sized correctly for your home will prevent frustrations and additional cost down the road.