A load calculation plays an integral part in selecting a new HVAC system for your home. It’s the yardstick by which HVAC professionals measure how much heating and cooling your home needs based on its overall energy efficiency.

This thorough analysis prevents choosing equipment that’s too big or small, either of which undermines your comfort, raises energy costs and shortens the life of the new system.

What’s Involved

HVAC contractors use Manual J software to complete these calculations. It requires detailed input that covers these characteristics of your home that drive its heating and cooling load like:

  • Its cubic footage.
  • Overall insulation levels.
  • Position, number, and energy efficiency of windows.
  • Extent of air leakage through the exterior.
  • Layout of the home that takes into account raised ceilings and two-story homes.
  • Number of family members and their ages.
  • Heat-producing appliances under roof.
  • Landscaping factors.

The contractor measures the room sizes, their orientation to the sun, and window placement. Once the data have been entered into the software, it recommends the size of the new system. The next step is determining the size and configuration of the ductwork using Manual D, and making the final system selection using Manual S.

Adequate and balanced air delivery through the ductwork keeps your home more comfortable, quieter and energy bills lower. Manual S specifies the best systems based on climate factors, especially summertime humidity levels.

Why It Matters

This load calculation is so important because equipment that has too much capacity run in short cycles, which harms the components inside HVAC systems. A system that’s too small won’t be able to keep your home comfortable during temperature extremes.

Constant cycling on and off stresses the parts, since the electrical load at startup is the highest. An undersized system that runs for long periods creates excessive wear on its components.

If you’re in the market for a new HVAC system, contact Jackson & Sons, providing top-notch HVAC services for Eastern North Carolina homeowners.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Eastern North Carolina (including Wayne, Johnston, Greene, Lenoir, Pitt and Duplin Counties) about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

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