What size air conditioner do I need?

Working out what size Air Conditioner you need can be tricky if you don’t know the basics. Here are some air conditioning terms that will help provide the basics on how air conditioning works.

1. Air Conditioning Parts

  • Air conditioners have a compressor and condenser coil. They are housed in a unit outside of your home.
  • An expansion valve and evaporator which is located above your furnace or (HVAC) system inside your home.

2. How air conditioning worksLady on couch

Air conditioners work by cycling gas to liquid and then to gas again through the use of pressure. Air conditioning refrigerant begins the cycle as a low-pressure, low-temperature gas that enters the outside unit where it’s compressed into a high-pressure, high-temperature gas. At this point, the gas enters the condenser coil where the fan cools it into a high-pressure liquid that then flows through tubing to your HVAC unit.

Once it reaches your HVAC unit it enters the expansion valve which limits the flow of the liquid as it enters the evaporator. This expansion valve lets the liquid expand into a gas inside the evaporator coil, chilling it as air from the HVAC blower moves over the coil.

The refrigerant then heads back outside as a low-temperature, low-pressure gas to repeat the cycle again. The Air is being circulated through your home is being chilled after it is blown over the chilled coil and it is then circulated throughout your home. Your AC system continues to run until your desired temperature is reached. Your air conditioning unit both chills and dehumidifies the air in your home.

3. How to choose the right size unit.

The size of your air conditioning unit is a key factor in its efficiency and performance. Things you need to consider in selecting the size of your air conditioner are;

  • The total volume of your home’s living space
  • The size and volume of walls that are exposed to sun
  • The number of windows in your home, as well as their age and orientation
  • The age of your home
  • Is your home well insulated?
  • The quality and efficiency of your existing ventilation system and ductwork

4. Why does the size matter so much?

  • Having an air conditioning unit that is sized correctly will ensure your home stays cooler longer.
  • An air conditioner that is too big will certainly cool your home faster however it will shut off to soon and will cycle on and off more frequently costing more in the long run.
  • An undersized unit will not effectively cool your entire home. It will run continuously, wasting valuable energy.

If you’re unsure about the size or type of air conditioning unit that is right for you, feel free to give us a call. We’d be happy to walk you through the process to ensure you choose the most efficient system for your home. Get a FREE estimate today