Take the edge off of bothersome summer heat with the air conditioner that fits well within your space. This air conditioning sizing buying guide is the complete reference for everything and anything dealing with air conditioning. Voltage, BTUs, Styles, and Attributes are covered in detail so that you could pick out the ideal air conditioner for your room or home.
Air Conditioning Sizing Guide
When choosing an air conditioner, it is essential to choose a unit with the correct size to handle the job. This is measured with its cooling capacity in BTUs for space the AC will be cooling. Air conditioners that are underpowered or overpowered use too much electricity plus it may result in problems further down the line.
A low-power unit will hardly cool a room effectively, running continuously, and using extra energy. To avoid this, lots of people will get the most effective air conditioner they can manage, but that will have undesirable results.
An air conditioner that is too big for a room will cool that room too fast and then shut off without reducing the humidity, giving the atmosphere a damp, uncomfortable feel. Air conditioners are designed to eliminate both humidity and heat from a room.
So the first step, while looking for a new air conditioner, is to measure the room or space it will be cooling. This will provide the essential information needed to be able to decide the air conditioning sizing for the unit. To do this, find the square footage of the space by multiplying the length by the width.
Once you have your base air conditioning sizing BTU requirement, the following modifications are recommended:
Heavy Sun Exposure
For houses with many windows plus huge sun exposure, increase the capacity by 10 percent!
How Many Men and Women Occupy the Space?
For a residence/ room that occupies more than 2 people, add an extra 600 BTUs for each extra person.
Little to No Sun Exposure
For rooms that get little to no sun, reduce the capacity by 10%
Is the AC will be near the Kitchen?
When the AC unit is located in the kitchen, then increase the capacity by 4,000 BTUs.
Once you have made your calculations by adding or subtracting to your BTU requirements you have your air conditioning sizing figured out.
Things to Know Before You Purchase an A/C
Types Of A/C Units
The next step is to decide which type of air conditioner you will need to purchase. This will be determined by which kind of windows you have, or if you have a room intended to include a wall air conditioner.
1. Window Air Conditioners
Here are the most popular types of portable air conditioners and are made for windows that slide up and down. The AC assembles on your window sill and vents warm air outside. Moisture extracted from the air in your room can be released out. The AC may be set up permanently, or in a manner which makes it simple to remove for the winter. Additional accessories can also be purchased to help in ensuring a perfect match for any window.
2. Casement Air Conditioners
A casement air conditioning unit was created especially for windows that swing out to the side (usually with a hand crank) or slips open sideways.
3. Portable Air Conditioners
Intended for rooms with windows that can’t accommodate mounting a complete AC unit, or for people who want the capability to move the AC unit from one room to another. A portable air conditioner is set on the ground and uses a flexible pipe to release hot air outside. The ventilation hose can usually fit through a small area, like the center vent often found in cellar glass-block windows.
4. Wall Air Conditioners
These are set through the wall of a building at an assigned opening. Wall Air Conditioners requires a sleeve to be correctly installed.
5. Central Air Conditioning Systems
Centralized air conditioning systems consist of a single primary unit that draws cool air by ducting that runs through a building, eliminating the need for separate AC units in each room. Individual homes will have to be estimated before selecting and setting up a central air conditioning system.
Other Items To Consider
Once you’ve determined which type and the air conditioner sizing to purchase, you can further narrow down your choice based on attributes specific to individual models. Characteristics like AC controls, remote controls, in addition to integrated air filters, are vital things to take into account.
Ability to Direct Air Flow
Air conditioners normally have flexible louvers that let you direct airflow horizontally or vertically. Consider your room design, and be sure that you select a model which lets you direct the airflow into the regions of your room where cooling will be needed.
The most straightforward AC units will have simple controls: a knob for fan power. These models are excellent for getting a burst of cold air into space but do not allow for ingenious climate controls. More superior models are equipped with digital displays which will enable you to set a more precise target temperature, which typically can be programmed to go off or on at certain times. Some have advanced energy-saving modes too.
Another option to think about models that come with remote control. Remote controls make temperature regulating easy from anywhere in the area.
A couple of models provide heat as well as air conditioning. This is an excellent alternative for those times between seasons when it is a little chilly but not chilly enough, to turn on your furnace.
What is my plug type, and what voltage do I need?
Your plug kind will let you know the voltage and amperage requirements of your new AC. Ensure that your new air conditioning unit matches your current electrical needs. Trying to plug in your AC unit into a socket with another plugin type or voltage can be quite dangerous.
Air Conditioner Problems and Methods to Fix Them
Each season you may ask yourself; “Hey, is it working as well as it used to?” Good to resolve these doubts before temperatures rise from swell to hot and humid.
Like any appliance, air conditioners require a little TLC to deliver the best performance. It is the ACs that has not been kept in a top-notch condition that generally struggles most in hot weather.
The No. 1 problem that impacts either window components or central AC systems, and–we are happy to report– it’s the easiest to repair. Here are eight questions to address that let you keep your AC in high performance all summer long.
1. Does The A/C Have Dirty Filter?
No matters which type of air conditioner you’ve have, a clogged filter reduces airflow, decreasing efficiency, and decreasing the ability to cool the space efficiently. When you haven’t cleaned the filter on your portable or window air conditioner recently, ensure that you do and then check it regularly. Filters on central air conditioning systems should be changed at least once a month, especially if your system is running continuously or if you have pets.
2. Too Much Sunlight Inside?
If your window AC is in a window that acquires direct sunlight in the heat of the day, it will have to work harder to cool your space. For those who have a choice, move it to a shadier spot. Otherwise, keep your curtains and shades pulled during the day to block sunlight and prevent it from heating your house. Same goes if you’ve Central AC.
3. Exterior Hot Air Leaking In?
Check the seals around your window air conditioner to be sure hot air is not getting in (or cold air is not seeping out). Reseal around your unit with weather stripping if needed.
4. Is The A/C Window Unit Installed Properly?
Air conditioners make lots of sounds, including from the whir of the fan and the noise of the compressor cycling on and off. These sounds are normal. But if you hear a vibrating sound, it may indicate that your unit was set up incorrectly. Make sure it’s assembling securely in the window and read the installation instructions in your owner’s manual to confirm that no measures were missed.
5. Is A/C Thermostat Functioning?
With a programmable or smart thermostat, you can more easily control the temperature in your house so that it is at a comfortable temperature when you are there, and a bit higher when you are not. If the temperature appears off, make sure that the thermostat is not exposed to direct sunlight, which might make it register the wrong temperature.
6. Checked The Registers- Dirty or Blocked?
If that has a forced-air heating and cooling system, frequently vacuum the registers to eliminate any dust buildup. Be sure that furniture and other objects are not blocking the airflow through your registers.
7. Have You Cleared Vegetation Or Debris?
The outside compressor for central air requires sufficient airflow to work perfectly, so be sure there are a minimum 2 to 3 feet of space between the compressor and some other structures or plants. There should also be 5 feet of clearance between the surface of the unit and some other trees above.
8. Did You Remember the Yearly Checkup?
An examination by an HVAC specialist can recognize any severe problems before they get worse and leave you hot and bothered in the peak of summer. The technician will assess all of the moving parts, along with the refrigerant, and recharge the machine if needed.
Want a New Air Conditioner?
If your room air conditioner is beyond repair, there is one that seemed great in our tests for as little as $150 for a small unit as much as $470 for a large one. Ensure that you compare the air conditioning sizing for the room it is intended to cool.
Sizing AC for Smaller Rooms (100 to 300 square feet)
For a home office, small bedroom, or guest room, search for an air conditioner having a capacity of 5,000 to 6,500 Btu. You will need one with good scores for comfort and sound.
Mid-sized Rooms A/C (250 to 400 square feet)
To cool a larger or busier room, you will want to step up into a mid-sized air conditioner rated for 7,000 to 8,500 Btu.
AC for Big Rooms (usually 350 to 650 square feet)
For a family room or living room, you’ll need a large air conditioner sizing, 9,800 to 12,500 BTU, particularly in the case you have an open floor plan.