How Can I Tell If My Air Conditioner Is Undersized?
First, Some Background
Air conditioner cooling capacity is measured in tons, and one ton is equal to 12,000 BTU’s (British Thermal Units) per hour.
This term (ton) actually is attributed to the amount of heat it would require to melt a block of ice that weighs one ton!
In the northern US, 700-1,000 sq ft per ton is generally an accepted guideline for sizing.
It is important to note however that there are many factors that can affect this such as: outdoor temperature, outdoor humidity, insulation in the home, even the amount of glass in the home facing south, east, and west.
Also, the ductwork engineering and size plays a role. If your duct work is over or undersized, your air conditioner will under perform when it comes to cooling.
Ok, now that we have some basics out of the way, let’s move on to some signs that may point to your air conditioner being undersized.
Your Air Conditioner Runs Continuously
If your air conditioner is running non-stop (as in literally never shuts off) during the summer months, something is up.
While there are several different reasons that your air conditioner is running continuously, this can also be a sign of an undersized air conditioner.
If your unit is undersized, it will have to work non-stop to cool your home.
Having a properly sized air conditioner is something that should be taken into account when getting an estimate for a new one.
If you are planning on replacing your air conditioner, be sure to ask the company that comes out whether or not they will complete a load calculation to verify you get the right size of air conditioner for your home.
High Electric Bills
This really goes hand-in-hand with the previous point. If your air conditioner is running continuously, you will no doubt have higher than average electric bills.
If you notice you are paying a lot more for electric than others are in similar sized homes in your area, your HVAC system may be to blame.
It is worth it to pay the service charge to have a professional come out and take a look to verify.
You don’t want to keep giving more money than necessary to the electric company!
Low Airflow From Vents
Another sign your air conditioner and entire HVAC system may be undersized is noticing barely any air coming from your vents when your unit is running.
Before jumping to conclusions however, be sure to check that your furnace filter is not overly dirty to allow air to get through it in the first place.
Think You Have An Undersized Air Conditioner?
Do you think you have an air conditioner that is undersized for your home? Need some professional guidance? We would be glad to come out and take a look! We are here to answer your call 24/7. Give us a call today at 614-475-1800 and we will be over as soon as the same day!