Is this the summer you have found that your home’s existing AC is no longer up to the task of keeping your house comfortable all throughout the remainder of the season? If you have come to this conclusion yet have not yet made a choice on what AC installation you should go with, the time is now—however, we discourage you from rushing and purchasing the first AC you can find!
The reason we do not encourage this is that too many owners go and purchase the largest AC they may find that matches their budget, not knowing that larger is not always better, and they actually could be doing more harm than good to their energy costs and cooling system. Keep in mind, it takes an educated and skilled HVAC expert to install a new AC. You require a contractor who understands key factors, such as the right AC tonnage.
Tonnage: What is it?
We know at this point you might think we are discussing how much an AC weights; however, that isn’t what we are discussing here at all. HVAC experts, like any specialist within a complex industry, have jargon of their own, and as you hear one talk about tonnage, they’re referring to the quantity of cooling that an AC unit offers for the space in which it’s installed.
The air conditioning’s cooling power is measured in the heat units a system extracts from the air. AC systems don’t “produce” cold air, as cold is not an energy form. The process of cooling is instead a result of the heat removal, and tonnage is the quantity of heat a cooling system may draw from a house over one hour.
This process of heat removal is measured as British Thermal Units (BTUs), which is the quantity of heat required to change the temperature of one pound of water 1℉. One ton of AC power will mean your unit removes 12,000 British Thermal Units from the building’s air an hour. Each extra ton accounts for an additional 12,000 British Thermal Units.
How Much Tonnage Is Required to Cool your House?
It’s a question our technicians receive a lot; however, it is vital that you know that there are several factors which go into this calculation. We are not just looking at your home’s square footage.
We also are looking into what kind of insulation you have, the amount of individuals who live in your home, the amount of windows and heat-generating appliances through the house, and even the amount of windows and doors. It’s possible to trust that our technicians will find the proper size for your specific needs and home.
There’s Such Thing as Too Much Tonnage
An air conditioner that is too large will go through a process referred to as short-cycling. It’s when the cooling system shuts off and rapidly turns back on. It’ll wear down on the air conditioner’s components, and eventually can cause a premature unit breakdown.