How to determine the size of your air conditioner?
Installing an air conditioner can make a large difference in your life, but only if you manage to choose the right air conditioner for your house. Of course, the kind of features it has and the price plays an important part in determining whether the AC is good or not. If you want the air conditioner to make some difference and actually make you feel comfortable, you would have to make sure that you buy the right size of air conditioner for your house.
You would have to calculate the size of the air conditioner based on the size of the house or the room that you wish to cool. If you are getting a normal, window air conditioner, it will not be able to cool the entire house- it will just be able to heat one room at a time. A split A/C would work for you in case you want something that can cool major portions of the house. Here are some steps that you can follow to find the right air conditioner size.
1. You should measure the size of your house. The size of your house is measured in terms of floor size. You have to measure the floor size of each and every room that you wish to cool with the help of the air conditioner. Cooled air always sinks to the bottom, so you do not have to worry about the height of the house too much. Measure the length of the floor with the width and multiply both. When you multiply these two numbers, you will get the total square feet. Multiply this by 337 BTU (each square foot takes 337 BTU of power).
2. Now measure the north side and south side windows. Add this to the square footage of either side. Multiply the number that you get with the south side by 871 BTUs, which is the amount of food that will take. Multiply the amount that you get for the north side window and the square foot by 166. Add both the final figures that you have gotten.
3. Now, you have to take care of the lighting and the electricity issues. Take a note of all the lights you have and the wattage of each light. Multiply the number of total watts used by 4.25 BTU. Say, you have a 5 100 Watt bulbs, that would be 500 Watts x 4.25 = 2125.
4. Do you have any major appliances running in the area where the air conditioner is going to go. Is there a TV or video player or a fridge in the same area? What is the maximum wattage of the appliances? Multiply this wattage by 3.15. You might not run the appliance at full capacity , but you have to make sure that you multiply the maximum wattage that could be used. The rationale behind that is the fact that having an air conditioner that can handle a greater capacity.
5. How many people live in your house? Say, it is 4 people, add one or two extra (in case you get guests). Now multiply this number with 400 BTUs. Write this number as well.
6. Add the final number that you got in the above mentioned 5 steps. This is the total number of BTUs that your air conditioner should have in order to cool your entire house without causing a short circuit.
What is the usual capacity needed?
If your house is around 1000-1500 sq ft, the capacity should be between 21,000- 24,000.
Things that you should take care of:
Here are some of the things that might have an effect on the capacity of the air conditioner:
1. If the room has a lot of shade, it is okay for you to have an air conditioner with reduced capacity.
2. A sunny room would take a larger amount of power to cool, so you would have to get an AC with at least 10% extra capacity.
3. If there are more than 2 people in one room, the amount of power taken to cool the room would be higher, so add extra BTUs accordingly.
4. If you want to cool the kitchen as well, add another 4000 BTUs as well. Kitchens take a lot more power to heat than normal rooms so it has increased capacity.
With these quick pointers and tips, you will be more equipped on what to look for while determining the right size of air conditioner for you cooling needs.