Your beautiful home in Sacramento, California, is being remodeled. You want the best size HVAC system for your home. What factors should you consider to make sure that the HVAC system you get is right for you?
What Does Your HVAC System Include?
HVAC includes your heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. These are the three primary components of keeping your home warm during the winter and cool during the summer. Each component is necessary and is integrated into your home’s HVAC system.
Of the three components, ventilation is the least discussed. However, it is arguably the most important. Proper ventilation keeps the air in your home fresh. It minimizes the growth of mildew and mold in your home.
Your furnace will use electricity or gas to heat your house during the winter. The amount of heat that your furnace produces is measured in BTUs. These are British thermal units. Each BTU is the equivalent of the temperature needed to increase one gram of water’s temperature by one degree. It takes thousands or tens of thousands of BTUs to heat a home, depending on the size of the house and the climate where your home is located.
Your air conditioner uses coolant, compressors, and fans to remove the heat and humidity from your home, releasing cool air into your home. BTUs also measure the cooling level of your air conditioner. The more square footage in your home and the higher your ceiling, the more BTUs your air conditioner will need to produce.
The Mathematics of HVAC for Air Conditioners
First, we should point out that the calculations used in this post are specifically for residential units. Things change a little bit when calculating the size of the HVAC system needed for a commercial building.
Let’s start by talking about your AC unit. Your first step would be to calculate the square footage in your home. You will then multiply that by 25 because you need 25 BTUs to cool one square foot of a residence in a typical scenario.
Now, you will need to factor in any special conditions. For example, if you have many rooms with multiple occupants for large amounts of time or large windows that let in a lot of sun, you will need to calculate for that. For each high-volume room in your home, you will need to add 500 BTUs. You need to add another 4,000 BTUs to your kitchen. If your AC unit is measured in tons, know that 1 ton equals 1,200 BTUs.
With the figures we mentioned, a 500- to 1,000-square-foot home will need between 12,500 and 25,000 BTUs. A house with 2,500 square feet will need 62,000 BTUs or more.
The Mathematics of HVAC for Heaters
Calculating what you are going to need for your furnace will be a little more complicated, but it’s something that you can easily do. The first step is determining how much heat you will need for each square foot of your home. With air conditioning, it is simple. It is 25 BTUs. But with heating, things get a little bit more complicated. This is because you need to factor in your climate and the insulation level of the home.
If your home is older, it is not going to be as efficient at keeping the heat in as newer homes. Additionally, the colder it is outside, the more BTUs you will need per square foot. You are going to need fewer BTUs per square foot in Sacramento than you would need in Minnesota during the winter.
If your home is new and you live in a warm climate, you will need 30 BTUs. If you live in an older home but are still in a warm environment, you will need 35 BTUs per square foot. If you have a new home but live in a cold climate, you will need 50 BTUs per square foot. If you live in an older home in a cold environment, you will need 60 BTUs per square foot.
Before you buy anything, you want to calculate for efficiency. You should take your heating factor and multiply it by the square footage in your home. Don’t just take that number and run out and purchase a new HVAC system.
Most furnaces are going to be about 80% effective. This means that you will need to purchase a furnace that is big enough to heat your home and that accounts for a 20% heat loss. Let’s say your home is 1,500 square feet. If your home is new and you live in a warm climate, you are going to need about 56,259 BTUs. If you are in an old home in a warm climate, you need around 65,625 BTUs. If you are in a new home in a cold climate, you should be looking for a furnace that can put out 93,750 BTUs. If you are in an old home in a cold environment, you should be looking for a unit that will produce around 112,500 BTUs.
What Happens if You Get the Wrong Size Air Conditioning Unit?
You need the right size air conditioner unit so that your system works efficiently. If your AC unit is too small, your unit is going to need to run constantly. The temperature in your home will rarely be cool enough to feel comfortable. Additionally, you will likely have uneven cooling throughout your home.
If your AC unit is too large, you’ll find that your unit is constantly turning off and on. When the unit is on, it will quickly lower the temperature in your home. It will then shut down, your home is going to warm up, and then it will turn on again. This constant cycling of your AC unit will wear it down, leading to more repairs and replacements.
What Happens if I Get the Wrong Size Furnace?
If your furnace is too large, it is going to generate too much output. This means that your thermostat will turn off your furnace before it completes the heating cycle. This is going to be damaging to your furnace. It will lead to different parts of your furnace breaking down faster than they were designed to. You will not be able to heat your home efficiently.
If your furnace is undersized, it won’t produce enough heat to keep your home comfortable. It will operate continuously. Even though the problem is the opposite of having an oversized furnace, the result is the same. Your unit will have increased wear and tear and a shorter lifespan.
Enjoy Exceptional Heating and Air Conditioning
At Huft Home Services, our commitment is to provide you with the highest-quality HVAC services. We want our customers to have complete confidence in their HVAC system. We are a locally owned company and a member of ACCA. We are staffed with NATE technicians.
Whether you need air conditioning, plumbing, insulation, water heaters, generators, or electrical services, we are the name that you should call. We are experienced in providing plumbing repairs, installations, and replacements. Call Huft Home Services today to see for yourself why our service is second to none.