Keeping your home cool during the summer months is imperative to the health and well-being of most people. While it is possible to live without the luxury of central cooling, there will be many a sleepless night, extra laundry, and overall discomfort. If you must suffer from the elements while in your own home, then why even build a shelter in the first place? Therefore, it is equally as important to make sure to buy the appropriately- sized air conditioning unit fit for your situation. Guessing and opting for the ‘bigger is better’ mentality, or likewise, being frugal and choosing the smallest air conditioner for practicality can wreak monetary disaster while also not solving the problem of eliminating heat in one situation.
Why Does the Size of an Air conditioner Matter?
To get the most efficiency out of an air conditioner, it is imperative to measure the square footage of whichever home/ apartment/ condo that the device will be cooling. In the case that one was to buy an air conditioner that is too small, then there will be the problem of the device not being able to cool the entirety of the home. Perhaps it’d be able to fill out only one room with cold air, or just a little further than that, however the rest of the house is left to be a humid mess. In this scenario you have just paid for a plug-in fan for the price of an air conditioner.
“Rattlers” are a common addition to apartment buildings, as they are the most efficient for the limited sq/ft per room.
The opposite scenario is more of an ‘overkill’ situation, where one opts to buy an unnecessarily large unit with the thought process that more power is always better. In one way, yes, it is correct. A large air conditioning unit will certainly keep a smaller home completely cool, at a hefty charge on the monthly energy bill. The previous example was illustrated as buying a fan for the price of an air conditioner, however in this case buying an overly large air conditioner for a smaller house is like buying a $4000 computer to play pac-man on. Either situation does not make financial sense for the output. Likewise, paying for hydro is already an expensive problem in Ontario, so paying for an over-priced air conditioner does not help in the least when this error can be revoked by a few minutes of measurement.
Measuring the cooling capacity of your home sounds complicated, however it is much easier than the name suggests. No need to calculate PPM, volume, or thermodynamic gas exchange; Instead, utilize basic third grade math to calculate the floor surface area with a standard length x width formula.
Length x width = Total area (sq ft)
The resulting total can then be compared to a guide of ‘basic cooling capacity’ which is marked for each size specific air conditioners. With this, it is possible to get the best-possible estimate, and thus the most efficiency for the amount of money you spend each month. For additional help, there are plenty of online resources in the form of charts and calculators that can help calculate cooling capacity, or ‘BTU calculations.
Square Feet BTU’S Per Hour
100 to 150 -5000
150 to 250 -6000
250 to 300 -7000
300 to 350 – 8000
350 to 400 – 9000
400 to 450 – 10,000
450 to 550 – 12,000
550 to 700 – 14,000
700 to 1000 – 18,000
1000 to 1200 – 21,000
1200 to 1400 – 23,000
1400 to 1500 – 24,000
1500 to 2000 -30,000
2000 to 2500 -34,000
This can be used to accurately find the proper-sized air conditioner fit for your specific living situation. The cost-effectiveness of this cannot be understated, so use it to your own advantage.
Categorised in: cooling