The Oversized Air Conditioner: Just Too Much of a Good Thing

Even if you buy the best equipment on the market, an oversized air conditioner won’t work properly and can cause problems later on.  That’s why it’s critical to make sure that your new A/C is the right size.

Unnecessary A/C Repair

Air conditioners work best on medium and long cycles. The compressor and fan cycle off and on a number of times throughout a typical day. With an oversized air conditioner, the cycle is cut much too short. They quickly reach their thermostat setting then shut off. The A/C must now double or triple the number of times it turns off and on. The most stress on the system occurs when it turns off and on; parts wear out much faster than they normally would otherwise.

Keeping Comfortable

Another downside to A/C short-cycling is lack of reduction in humidity. Water doesn’t have a chance to build up and drain. It stays on the coils where it gets blown back into the house. This is particularly true if the A/C fan is set to run constantly. Instead of collecting moisture in your home and draining it away, oversized air conditioners can actually increase your home’s humidity, making you feel less comfortable.

Even if the room temperature matches the thermostat, you may turn down the A/C more to compensate for the extra humidity, and waste energy in the process. If your  A/C is in good condition but  doesn’t cycle for at least 30 minutes, there’s a high probability it’s too large.

The Importance of Manual J

An oversized air conditioner isn’t particularly rare. Contractors sometimes use shortcuts for new installations, instead of Manual J to determine how large the A/C should be. Published by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), Manual J contains standard guidelines and formulas to calculate your home’s cooling load. From there, professional contractors determine the proper A/C size. Without Manual J, contractors merely guess at the proper A/C size.

For more expert advice about preventing common air conditioner problems, contact Davis Air Conditioning & Heating. We’ve proudly served homeowners throughout the Houston area for nearly 45 years.

Image Provided by Shutterstock.com

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