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What Size Air Conditioner Do I Need?

Published on: July 23, 2013

Purchasing a new air conditioning system affords you the opportunity to choose a correctly sized unit that can meet your cooling needs efficiently and help you control your electricity bills. As you shop for your new unit, you’ll be weighing a number of factors including your own comfort preferences and budget. Remember that it is also essential to pay attention to air conditioner sizing. Choosing a unit of the right size is essential to your comfort. At Air Conditioning South East, we’re happy to provide you with the information you need in order to choose a correctly sized AC unit for your home or business

Understanding AC Unit Sizing

Before you can determine what size AC unit is needed for your home or business, you must understand how the cooling capacity of air conditioning systems is measured. Every air conditioner is designed to provide optimal cooling for a given amount of space. The amount of space that an AC unit can cool efficiently can be determined by evaluating the system’s British Thermal Units (BTUs). BTUs are used to describe the cooling capacity of AC units and heat pumps.

Evaluating Your Cooling Needs

As you shop for a new AC unit, you’ll weigh many different factors to determine what type of system will best meet your cooling demands. Before you start shopping, take some time to answer the following questions:

  • How many square feet of space do I need to cool?
  • How energy efficient is my home?
  • Do I need a zoned or non-zoned system?

Sizing air conditioner units according to these criteria is one of the easiest ways for homeowners to ensure their own comfort while securing energy savings. In general, you can pick an air conditioning unit by matching the number of square feet that you need to cool in your home to the number of BTUs that can efficiently cool that type of space. Allow for extra cooling capacity if your home is prone to leaks or is very old.

If you’re having a new cooling system installed in your space, it’s a good idea to have an HVAC professional complete cooling load calculations on your behalf.

Choosing The Right Type of System for Your Space

To get the most out of your new air conditioning unit, you’ll need to choose the right type of system for your space. This means deciding whether you will use a ductless, central air or heat pump-based system. Remember that two systems with the same BTU rating can perform differently in your home. Ask a professional contractor to help you determine which type of system makes the best sense for your space.

Get Professional Help with AC System Sizing

At Air Conditioning South East, we believe in empowering consumers to make smart HVAC purchasing decisions. That’s why we make it easy for you to find experienced HVAC professionals in your area who can answer all of your AC sizing questions. Use our free online tools to find a contractor in your area today.