HVAC Design: The Importance of Properly Sized HVAC Equipment
Find Out Where YOUR Home is Losing Energy:
When buying any type of heating, air conditioning or geothermal system, it’s essential to select the correct unit to efficiently condition your home. Reputable HVAC contractors understand the importance of calculating the load requirements before recommending a particular system. These calculations include your building's size, the direction your home faces, the number and position of your windows, and any existing insulation. Avoid doing business with anyone who doesn't calculate sizing requirements: companies that fail to perform these calculations can't factor in a building's unique needs and characteristics, making it impossible to determine the best size for the HVAC equipment.
Some companies might choose to take the current size of your system, which won’t necessarily be the best size for your home. This approach doesn’t factor in any extra insulation that you may have added since the original heating or cooling system was installed. It also doesn’t consider that the existing equipment isn’t the proper size.
In the past, contractors weren’t required to perform calculations before applying for permits. Because of this, many buildings have improperly sized equipment, costing homeowners extra on their gas and electricity bills. When systems are not properly sized they cost more to operate, break down more often, and need to be replaced sooner – which all add up to additional costs.
Whether you’re looking to install new air conditioning equipment or replace the HVAC unit in your home, you deserve equipment that works at its optimum level. The Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) advises homeowners to, “make sure that your contractor uses the Manual J [HVAC design] residential load calculation procedure. Insist on it! Manual J is the official standard for residential load calculation and is required by many building codes around the country. It takes time and expertise to complete a professional load calculation and HVAC system design. Contractors lacking the necessary technical skills or who are just interested in making a ‘fast buck’ may try to convince you this is not important.”
Price shouldn't be your primary concern when hiring a contractor to install or service an HVAC system. In the long term, you'll save significant money by paying slightly more up front to hire an experienced, licensed professional who will correctly install the appropriate system for your home.
Benefits of HVAC Design Calculations
Correctly calculating your home's exact HVAC needs will benefit you in a range of ways:
- It determines the most efficient way to meet the air flow requirements of every room in the home. Each room has different flow requirements depending on the size and shape of the room.
- It ensures that you purchase an air conditioner that is designed and sized correctly. This helps avoid excess humidity, cool the whole home and help you save money on your electricity bills.
- You will spend less money in the long run, because your costs will be on the installation and not on repairs, downsizing or utility bills. Oversized or undersized equipment more frequently fails and needs costly maintenance.
- You won’t need to worry about one room being hotter or cooler than another. The size of your HVAC unit will be based on the shape and size of your home's different rooms, and your installation expert should be able to balance your unit's output.
- Effectively installed HVAC units run efficiently, using as little energy as possible, saving money and helping reduce pollution.
Incorrectly installed HVAC units will force you to:
- Spend more money heating or cooling your home.
- Replace your equipment sooner.
- Not be able to cool your whole home at the same rate.
- Not be able to dehumidify your entire home.
- Need expensive repairs on your equipment on a regular basis.
- Experience sudden changes in temperature in all or some areas of your house.
Having your HVAC design calculations performed by certified HVAC professionals is the key to energy savings, comfort and peace of mind. Learn more about how to choose an HVAC contractor.
Other HVAC solutions:
- HVAC Maintenance: Tips to Keep Your Equipment Running
- What is HVAC? HVAC is an acronym that stands for Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning.
- Who Invented Air Conditioning? Air conditioning is a modern convenience that we take for granted.
- How to Choose an HVAC Contractor This article will help you choose an HVAC Contractor.
- Superior HVAC Energy Efficiency By Upgrading Your HVAC System…And Other Fixes
- HVAC: What is it? The Basics Explained
- HVAC Design: The Importance of Properly Sized HVAC Equipment
- HVAC / Air Conditioning: A Quick Primer and History
- Sizing Up HVAC Prices: How to Choose the Right Air Conditioner
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