Regulating your home’s cooling system and buying a new air conditioner are not the sexiest topics. However, giving them careful thought will help you choose the right-sized air conditioning unit for your home.
When an air conditioner is too large for the space it cools, you waste money on excess cooling capacity that you never use. On the other hand, if you buy a unit that’s too small, your monthly energy bills will skyrocket because the system must overwork itself to maintain the temperature you set on your thermostat. It will also break down faster because of the increased wear and tear, which means the total cost of ownership increases.
If you’re not sure what size unit would be good for your home, consider hiring a trained HVAC technician to evaluate your home and choose the perfect AC unit. Even if you’re just replacing an existing unit, factors such as your family size and the types of appliances you use can impact the size recommendation from your HVAC contractor. Plus, if you add on to your home or renovate it, your sizing needs will change.
Image via Flickr by Open Grid Scheduler / Grid Engine
Many people forget that proper humidity can mean the difference between a comfortable and miserable home. If your home’s HVAC system is too big, you may have humidity issues, especially if you live in the South or near a body of water.
When an air conditioner runs, it removes moisture from the air. If your AC is too big, it won’t run often enough to curtail humidity. High humidity in your home can extend fabric drying time and create a perfect environment for mold growth. Mold can cause numerous health issues, and moisture in the air can make your home feel cool but clammy. If you turn down the thermostat to fix the problem, you’re only causing the AC unit to run longer, which increases your utility bills.
Increase Energy Efficiency
There are many different types and sizes of AC unit, so it’s important to choose the correct one for your home. A properly sized air conditioner not only helps to maintain a low energy bill, but will also increase your energy efficiency and reduce your carbon footprint. Newer air conditioning units are designed to run in cycles, slowly cooling your home instead of instantly bringing down the temperature.
Other energy-efficient technologies have also emerged, producing air conditioners that use two-stage cooling technology, work with programmable thermostats, and contain fewer moving parts. As the cost of power increases, consumers get more concerned about not only saving money, but also protecting the environment.
When choosing the right-sized air conditioner for your home, seek the help of a trusted, well-trained HVAC technician. The formula for calculating the proper size of AC unit can get complicated, involving multiple factors like your home’s square footage and the amount of insulation you have. If you call in the pros, you’ll get right the first time and prevent costly mistakes.