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HVAC Sizing Guide for Tampa Bay Property Owners

hvac sizing

Many Tampa homeowners have air conditioning and furnaces in their homes to combat Florida’s notorious heat and humidity during the day and chilly temperatures at night. Unfortunately, having the wrong size air conditioner or furnace can cause significant problems inside the property.

Don’t waste time, energy, and money on an improperly sized heating and cooling system. Consult the guide below to learn about proper HVAC sizing for your home.

How To Determine HVAC Sizing

A common misconception is that an extensive HVAC system is more powerful than a smaller one. However, an oversized unit tends to be less efficient than one of the correct size related to the square footage of the property. 

For example, an HVAC unit that is too big for the space may have issues dehumidifying all the rooms in the house, creating an unpleasant, clammy feel in certain areas. The system will consume excessive energy to function, but it will have a lower performance capacity.

Use the following methods to learn how to find the best size for your home’s heating and cooling system. 

Manual J Calculation

One of the best ways to determine the correct size HVAC unit for your home is with the Manual J calculation. The Manual J is a nationally recognized protocol for determining the precise amount of warm and cool air needed to keep a house comfortable as required. The manual uses the following factors within its calculation:

  • Square footage of the house
  • Number of windows and their type
  • Climate zone
  • Ductwork
  • Number of inhabitants
  • Quality and amount of insulation
  • Number of heat-generating appliances
  • Presence of natural shade and sunlight

With a Manual J calculation, you will know the precise number of BTUs or British Thermal Units of heating and cooling your home requires. 

Square Footage Measurements 

It’s sometimes possible to use the number of square feet in your home to estimate how many BTUs you need for your new HVAC unit. These estimates are not as precise as Manual J calculations, but the measurements can give you a general idea of the appropriate unit size for your house.

  • 700 – 1,000 sq. ft. equals 18,000 BTUs
  • 1,000 – 1,200 sq. ft. equals 21,000 BTUs
  • 1,200 – 1,400 sq. ft. equals 23,000 BTUs
  • 1,400 – 1,500 sq. ft. equals 24,000 BTUs
  • 1,500 – 2,000 sq. ft. equals 30,000 BTUs
  • 2,000 – 2,500 sq. ft. equals 34,000 BTUs

A good rule of thumb to remember is that the maximum size of your new HVAC unit should not exceed 15% of the BTUs necessary for cooling or 40% of the BTUs for heating. If your system includes a heat pump, the maximum becomes 25% because it heats and cools. 

Avoid an Oversized Unit With the Help of Skilled HVAC Contractors

Now that you know the importance of HVAC sizing and its effects on your home, it’s time to work with an experienced HVAC company like AirZone Air Conditioning & Heating. For quality air conditioning in Tampa, residents turn to these professionals for their customizable installation services and 100% customer satisfaction. To schedule service, call 813-750-0191 today.

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