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What Size HVAC Unit Do I Need?

The Right HVAC Unit Size for My Home

Not all HVAC units are one size fits all. The right size air conditioner will help your home run more energy efficiently. If your AC unit is too big or small, you could have problems cooling your home and pay higher electricity bills. Just because you live in a warmer climate does not mean that you need a large HVAC unit, as bigger units do not mean they cool faster. The square footage of your house is a critical factor in choosing the right size air conditioning unit. 

While there are many ways for you to calculate and determine what size air conditioner you need, it’s always best to trust a licensed HVAC technician to make the final call. When you’re considering replacing your air conditioners, call Lex Air Conditioning and Heating and one of our experienced HVAC technicians will come out and measure your home and evaluate all the other factors to consider when replacing your air conditioning unit.

Our technician will also perform an energy audit of your home. The audit considers ductwork quality, home installation quality, sun exposure, the number of people living in the home, etc. Call us at (972) 217-8955 to schedule a free in-home estimate. 

Problems That Come With Having an Improperly Sized Unit

If your air conditioner is not large enough to cool your home, it might be working overtime. Your unit will run constantly, but your home will never be cool enough. If the HVAC unit is too big, it will constantly turn on and off without removing the humidity from the air, so your home will feel cool but also damp. This can cause wear and tear on your air conditioning unit and requires a lot of energy.  

Factors To Consider When Determining the Proper Size HVAC Unit

There are many factors to consider when choosing the right size AC unit for your home. Not only should you consider the square footage of your house, but you also need to consider the climate where you live, the cooling capacity of your system, and your home’s insulation. Having the wrong size AC unit can mean hotter summers and colder winters. 

You’ll also need to consider the type of air conditioning system you want. While there are many different types of AC units, there are three primary styles. The most common type of cooling system is the split-system air conditioner. This air conditioning system includes an indoor and outdoor unit that work together to cool your home. Using ductwork, this system runs refrigerant through both units to reach the desired temperature and humidity level. 

A ductless air conditioner uses pipes that connect one outdoor unit to one or more indoor units to cool your home. A ductless air conditioner does not use ductwork to cool the home but a system of pipes instead. These indoor units allow the homeowner to have a different temperature in each room. This type of HVAC system is best suited for those that need a different climate in each room. 

The third type of air conditioning system is the packaged air conditioner system. This system is made up of one outdoor unit where all the mechanical parts, like the evaporator coil, compressor, and condensing coil, are all housed inside the unit. The packaged system utilizes ductwork to cool the home. You can choose a single- or two-stage HVAC system depending on your desired energy efficiency level. 

If you’re considering replacing your air conditioners, call the experts at Lex Air to evaluate these factors and more to determine the proper air conditioner sizing your home needs.

The Climate Where You Live

The climate where you live is one factor to consider when shopping for the right size air conditioner. If you live in a hot, humid area, you will need a different-sized air conditioner than if you live in a milder, dry area. The humidity and temperature will determine how much cooling and dehumidifying the AC unit will need to do. 

The Heating or Cooling Capacity of Your System

The air conditioner’s cooling capacity is measured in BTUh, British Thermal Units per Hour. The BTUh shows how much energy the air conditioner or HVAC unit uses to remove heat from your house within one hour. This measurement is referred to in tons, tonnage, or BTUh. One ton cooling capacity is equal to 12,000 BTUh. Air conditioners are measured in tonnage ratings. Residential units fall within 0.5-ton increments ranging from 1.5 to 5-ton units (18,000 – 60,000 BTUh). For example, if your home is 2,000 square feet, consider a 3-ton or 3.5-ton unit, depending on where you live. 

It’s also important to consider the unit’s SEER ratings. SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio and measures the unit’s cooling level. The SEER rating is found by measuring the unit’s cooling output and dividing the total energy used. The less energy used, the higher the SEER ratio. The most common SEER ratio is 14 or 16.  

The Square Footage of Your House

Your home’s square footage will also impact your air conditioner’s size. If you need to know your home’s square footage, you should be able to find it on the blueprints. If you still can’t find the square footage of your home, you can measure it manually. After you find the square footage, multiply it by 25, divide it by 12,000, and subtract 0.5 to find the BTUhs needed to cool your home. While you can calculate all of this yourself, having a licensed HVAC technician handle this ensures you get the right size AC unit.

Your Home’s Insulation

If your home is well-insulated, it will require less cooling energy than a poorly insulated one. The walls of your home are filled with a thermally non-conductive material that helps keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Depending on how well your home’s insulation is working can determine the size of your AC unit. If you don’t have good insulation, the air conditioner will need to run longer.  


Wondering If Your Home’s HVAC Unit Is The Correct Size? Call Lex Air Conditioning & Heating Today to Schedule an Inspection

If you’re considering replacing your HVAC system, call the Mansfield HVAC pros at Lex Air Conditioning and Heating. One of our licensed technicians will evaluate your cooling needs and offer the best options for your home. We will perform a calculation to determine the correct size HVAC unit your home needs. Lex Air proudly serves the North Texas area, including Plano, Dallas, Frisco, Fort Worth, and the surrounding areas. Schedule your professional air conditioning installation service by calling (972) 217-8955 or message us online today. 

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