If you are installing a new HVAC system or upgrading an existing system, it is important to make sure the new unit is an appropriate size. HVAVC systems that are too small will not be heated or cooled properly, they break down a lot and cost more to run. Although it is tempting to increase unit size, it often faces the same issues as smaller units. Additionally, oversized units cause moisture problems. According to the Department of Energy, a wrong installation is a common cause of poor HVAC performance. To ensure that your new system is properly sized and installed, ask your HVAC contractor to follow the load calculation guidelines recommended by two respected professional organizations in the United States: the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers and Air Conditioning Contractors of America. Certified Professionals at Aqua Plumbing & Air in Sarasota, Florida, use these instructions and procedures to ensure the load, sizing, and fitting are correctly calculated. Our technicians have advanced training and years of experience installing all types of HVAC systems. What is HVAC load? Your HVAC contractor may talk to you about calculating the load while planning your new system. The cooling load is the amount of heat that must be removed from a location to maintain a constant temperature. The heating load is the amount of heat that needs to be added to maintain a constant temperature. The calculation is then used to determine the size of the unit that will provide adequate heating and cooling at a reasonable cost. Some contractors estimate load by using the base base, a practice that industry experts are not strongly encouraged by. Calculating the load requires careful evaluation of the many factors that determine unit size and channels, component placement and other important aspects that affect comfort, price, and reliability: square footage of a building. Although building size is not the only factor in determining load, the larger the building, the greater the cooling or heating load. Guidance. Buildings facing west and south receive more solar gain than buildings facing north and east. In Florida, the summer afternoon sun can raise temperatures by several degrees through windows, walls and doors, adding to the cooling load. In winter, buildings facing the south gain heat from the sun, which reduces the heating load. Local climate. The ambient temperature and the amount of humidity affect the load. Higher temperatures and humidity require more cooling energy. The number of doors and windows. Doors and windows allow heat to be transferred, and windows are a major source of heat gain and loss. Presence of shade trees and vegetation types on the plot. Shade can lower outdoor temperatures around a building by up to 6 degrees. Well-planned landscaping can reduce the cooling load by up to 50%. How many people occupy the room. People generate heat. The more people occupy a room, the greater the need for refrigeration. The purpose of space. Kitchens, laundry rooms, electronics, lighting and appliances generate heat, which requires more cooling energy. Building materials and building structure condition. Some materials are more energy efficient than others. Your HVAC contractor may perform a blowing door test to assess the building’s structure. The cracks allow outside air to penetrate. The amount of insulation. Insulation is one of the most cost-effective ways to improve energy efficiency. If the price quoted to a contractor is significantly lower than that of other contractors, or if the company insists that a smaller unit is sufficient for your needs, be careful. Shopping at the lowest price can end up costing you more in the long run. If you are replacing a unit, the contractor must also consider compatibility of the new unit with ducts, thermostats, system controls, logs, grilles, and other sources of ventilation. If you choose a new, high-efficiency system, the installation takes longer. The contractor must balance the system, perform pressure tests and adjust air ducts to ensure compliance. Spending more time increases the cost of installation. Aqua Plumbing & Air technicians take the time to talk about the important factors that influence your choices about choosing a system that is right for you. Ask about indoor climate requirements, budget and air quality needs. We discuss energy efficiency options to help you find a unit that balances cost and higher efficiency. We also discuss the benefits of installing advanced controls, such as programmable thermostats and smart systems. Our goal is to ensure your comfort by using reliable equipment at an affordable cost. Problems with Small Scale HVAC Systems Small units often encounter many problems. The Department of Energy (DOE) reports that proper size and installation are the key to HVAC efficiency. The units run longer to reach the temperature setpoint, which can exhaust the compressor. During periods of extreme heat, they may not be able to keep the indoor temperatures comfortable. Units may overheat and turn off. Utility bills are higher when the system must be operating for a longer period to maintain a comfortable indoor environment. Smaller units usually break down more often, which not only causes inconvenience but can allow indoor temperatures and humidity to rise to levels that can endanger the health of the building occupants. Small sized units often fail before reaching a normal life. Then customers are faced with purchasing a new system. Problems with Large HVAC Systems Large units often encounter problems similar to smaller systems. Because it reaches the set temperature quickly, it shortens the cycle, or it starts and stops repeatedly, causing the compressor to wear out more quickly. Although the set temperature was reached quickly, the unit did not operate long enough to remove moisture adequately. Chambers may feel uncomfortable or scar. Excessive moisture creates an environment for mold to grow in ducts, near vents and in living quarters. Ultimately, the system stops working properly and has a shorter service life. Additionally, the larger units cost more and must be paired with compatible sized ducts. You will pay more for the cooling power you don’t need. Energy efficient options There are several types of energy efficient systems available for commercial and residential use. Air conditioners are rated by SEER, or Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, which describes the amount of cooling required during the cooling season divided by the amount of energy required to operate the unit during that time. The higher the SEER, the more energy efficient the unit is. Federal guidelines state a minimum SEER of 14 for Florida. Carrier offers equipment up to 26 SEERs. Systems with higher SEER ratings usually cost more. Small openings without sewers. If your home has no ducts, or if you are doing addition and cannot connect to a ducted system, small partitions without ductwork will solve the problem. Ductless units, available as air conditioners and heat pumps, provide air-conditioned for individual rooms or areas. Each unit has its own controls, allowing the temperature to be selected independently without affecting comfort elsewhere. Since there are no channels, neither cooling nor heating is lost, which increases energy efficiency. In addition, pollutants are not transported from room to room through channels. Multistage units. A standard air conditioner operates at one speed, either on or off. When it reaches the desired temperature, it turns off. As it heats up, it rotates again. Variable phase compressors adapt to the cooling load. When temperatures drop, the unit operates at lower speeds, using less energy. When temperatures rise, it operates at higher speeds to meet cooling needs. Two-stage compressors are more energy efficient because they operate at low speeds about 80% of the time. They run longer, which reduces temperature fluctuations. The result is better comfort and humidity control with less energy use. Variable speed bellows. In addition to variable-stage compressors, variable-speed blowers adjust the speed of the fans that blow air over the coils and into the living space. It is more energy efficient because the speed adapts according to the need for heating or cooling. You will not feel explosions or pockets of hot or cold air. Indoor air quality improves because fans that run longer keep air circulating. Why Choose Aqua Plumbing & Air? A new HVAC system is a major investment that should last for years. Proper size and fit are the key to performance and longevity. Aqua Plumbing & Air has been serving customers in Sarasota and the surrounding communities since 1974. We are an Authorized Dealer of Carrier Factory, a prestigious designation that must be obtained every year. Our technicians and staff undergo training by Carrier to provide superior customer service and technology expertise. We back Carrier formulations with a 100% customer satisfaction guarantee and are authorized to honor Carrier’s warranties. Our technicians are certified by NATE, the leading professional organization for technician certification. We use industry guidelines for new installations, ensuring that your new system is sized and installed properly. After installation is completed, we are ready for your maintenance and repair checks and any other needs you have. If you are considering a new installation, call today to speak to one of our experienced service technicians. Please note that we are available 24/7 for emergencies.