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The Importance of Right-Sizing Your Home HVAC System


Doing a job efficiently is all about finding the right fit: choose a tool that is too large or too small (or too weak or powerful) for the task at hand and it will cost you energy – and money – needlessly.

In the HVAC installation business, the job of matching home heating or cooling equipment to its load (see below) is called rightsizing, and it’s one of the most important – and least understood – factors in HVAC performance.

Let’s consider the importance of rightsizing a home central air conditioning system, for example: if you buy an air conditioner that’s too small for your home, it will constantly overwork to get the job done, which will lead to poor efficiency, premature repairs and a shorter lifespan for your equipment. Ironically, choosing a system that is too large will have the same affect: A too-powerful cooling system will “cycle” (turn on and off) so often that it will quickly wear out critical A/C parts, costing you hundreds or perhaps even thousands of dollars over the lifetime of your equipment.

The million-dollar (or at least the several thousand-dollar) question is, how do you rightsize a cooling (or heating) system for your home?

Well, let’s start with how NOT to rightsize an HVAC system: using square footage calculations alone.

There are no shortage of online home cooling and heating load calculators out there, and most of them rely on “rule of thumb” assumptions about your home. The problem is, calculating your home cooling or heating load is about a lot more than square footage.

When choosing an HVAC system, you want to take into consideration the “big picture” factors that influence how hard your equipment will have to work to do its job. Some of these factors include:

  • The size and layout of your house
  • The materials your home is made from
  • How much direct sunlight your home gets
  • How much insulation you have installed
  • The size and kind of windows you have

As you can see, this information isn’t something you can gather without doing a detailed evaluation in your home – a step that most “bargain” A/C contractors will skip.

At Needham Oil Complete Heating & Cooling, we give FREE, comprehensive, onsite, no obligation estimates on HVAC installations that take into account the unique conditions in your home, your budget, and other factors to give you the best bang-for-your-buck heating or cooling solution.

If you’re in the market for a new, high efficiency heating or cooling equipment installation in our Massachusetts service area, don’t settle for less: trust the pros at Needham – your Middlesex County and Norfolk County, MA home cooling experts. Contact us today to learn more!