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Air Conditioners – Bigger is Not Always Better

air conditioning calculator
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Buying a new air conditioner is a long-term investment, and it’s important to choose the right size unit for your room. If your air conditioner is too small it will not adequately cool the space, but if it is too big for the room and has too much cooling capacity it will be costly and inefficient.

Why Bigger Is Not Necessarily Better

A unit that is too large for a space will not humidify the air as quickly as it cools it. This will result in a clammy feeling in the air. One that is oversized will cool the house quickly and then shut off, the continual on off process also drives up the electricity bill. The best way to check what size AC you will need for your space is to consult with an experienced and knowledgeable air conditioning company to calculate it accurately.

The Problem with Calculating Online

While these calculators are a quick and easy way to estimate the size of your unit, they can sometimes be difficult to understand and you will probably get some of the calculations wrong. While they can offer a general guideline to calculate the area and size AC you might need, they cannot actually see your space and give you an accurate reading for all the different variables in your home. Also, it is always best to consult an experienced AC installer to calculate an accurate heat load of your room. The air conditioning experts have had years of experience and taking into account various factors, they have simplified the calculating technique. They will also be able to explain why they have calculated it in such a way and offer you the best advice in terms of which units will suit your needs and your space.

The Details

The size of air conditioners is measured in tons. This is not a measure of the weight. A ton is a measure of an air conditioners capacity to cool. The old school equation to determine the size of you unit is: (House square footage multiplied by 25, then divided by 12,000)-0.5 = required tons. This calculation can be used, but there are many factors that will contribute to calculating the perfect size for your home. A professional will also be able to take into consideration your needs and your family’s day-to-day life.

Some of the factors affecting the choice of the size of your air conditioner are:

  • The height of the ceilings – if the height is more than ten feet it will affect the calculations.
  • How much insulation is there in the ceilings – well insulated houses can reduce the size of your air conditioner.
  • The size of the windows and whether or not they receive direct sunlight.
  • Wide open spaces that lead to other rooms – a larger air conditioner may be needed in houses with this type of design.
  • The size of the rooms and doors in the house – families will also have to account for children who leave doors and windows open.
  • The average temperatures in your region – extreme variations of temperatures in your area will affect the capacity of the air conditioner.

What Next?

It is important to remember that online air conditioning calculators can only give you a very generalized outcome. Consult an expert who is armed with all the information needed for the most accurate calculation. This will enable you to purchase an efficient and perfectly sized central air conditioner that will run through the required amount of cycles to keep your house and family comfortable.


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