What Size Air Conditioner Do I Need?

It’s important for a few reasons to get the right-sized air conditioner for your home. The right size of AC unit will run efficiently, keep your utility bills down and continue to operate for a long time. Here’s how to make sure you select the right-sized unit.

It’s Like Goldilocks and the Three Bears

You can liken getting the right-sized air conditioner to the fairytale “Goldilocks and the Three Bears.” A system too big can’t run a full cycle. It will instead kick on and then quickly shut off as it’s cooled your home too quickly. This costs you a lot of money. An AC system that is too small can’t cool your home. It will run continuously in a vain attempt to cool your home properly. This, too, will cost you a lot of money.

An air conditioning system that’s just the right size will cool your home efficiently by running a full cycle. It will then shut off for a while before starting the next cycle. This is the best way to save money on your utility bills.

“Old School” Way of Getting the Right AC System

The “old school” way of getting the right-sized AC system for your home is to multiply the square footage of your home by 30, divide this number by 12,000 and then subtract 1. You adjust this number slightly based on the climate you live in. This gives you the tonnage of the AC system you need.

Newer Ways of Calculating AC System Sizing

A newer method, called Manual J calculation, takes into account your home’s square footage, climate zone, ductwork, number of windows and other factors. A qualified contractor, such as J's HVAC Unlimited of Mount Airy, NC, will perform more detailed calculations like Manual J when replacing your AC unit.

J's HVAC Unlimited is a contractor that installs, repairs and tunes-up heating and cooling systems. Our other service areas include indoor air quality, generators, ducts and crawlspace renovations. Please contact us today to schedule a visit from one of our technicians.