How to Choose the Perfect AC Unit for Your Home

Air conditioning is an essential part of keeping your home comfortable, but it can be difficult to know what size unit you need. To calculate the size of air conditioner you need, you must first calculate the square footage of your home and multiply it by 20 to get the BTUs required. A 12,000 BTU unit will cool a space of 400 to 600 square feet, while a two-ton air conditioner will cool a 1500 square foot space. To determine the size of the air conditioner a room needs, first multiply the length of the room by its width.

Then multiply it by 25 BTU to get enough cooling for the room in different weather conditions. For example, if the room is 15 feet long and 12 feet wide, that equals 180 square feet. Now multiply 180 by 25 BTU per square foot and you get 4500 BTU, which is the minimum cooling capacity of the air conditioner you should buy. In most cases, you can use the following conversion information to help you determine the size of your current air conditioning system (use the system model number, NOT the serial number).

Multiply the calculation of square feet by 20 and you'll have a good estimate of the capacity of the air conditioner you need. It's best to leave the installation in the hands of professionals, who can determine the ideal location for your air conditioner. For a small bedroom, home office, or guest room, 100 to 250 square feet, look for an air conditioner with a capacity of 5,000 to 6,500 Btu. Enter the size of the room in square feet and whether you live in a warm or cold climate in the size calculator.

Buying an air conditioner that's too small for your home means that the unit is constantly running and the temperature inside is rarely cold enough. Finding the right size air conditioner is very important because every home is different and the size of the central air conditioner will depend on several factors besides just its size. Buying an air conditioning system that is too large for your home can cause it to constantly turn on and off. The BTuH rating indicates how much energy your air conditioner or HVAC uses to remove heat from your home in one hour.

While calculations can give you a rough estimate of how much BTU you need, there are several additional factors you should consider when selecting an AC unit. Understanding how size affects comfort will help illustrate why bigger isn't always better in air conditioning. A properly sized unit will work properly throughout its cycle and ensure that your home stays cool for longer. If you're buying an air conditioner to cool your entire house, you'll need to repeat this process for each room and then add up all their square footage.

With this information in hand, you'll be able to make an informed decision about which AC unit is right for your home.

Adele Fonseca
Adele Fonseca

Hardcore baconaholic. Lifelong pop culture trailblazer. Subtly charming travel scholar. Freelance bacon enthusiast. Wannabe zombie geek.