Is your Cary HVAC Too BIG?

A common question for many of our new home communities is whether or not their HVAC unit is big enough to support their home. While we sometimes run across units that aren't large enough to meet the needs of a household. An even more common problem for our customers is an OVERSIZED system. That's right, it is completely possible that your Cary HVAC is TOO BIG for your home. Therefore, it may not be properly cooling or heating your home.

Bigger isn't always better

Many times, getting the bigger version of something is better. A larger washing machine can wash more clothes. A larger vehicle may offer better safety features. But a bigger Cary HVAC system isn't always better. But why?

Oversized HVAC units don't dehumidify very well

There are specific tonnage (for air conditioning) and BTU (for heating) sizes for every home. While a larger HVAC may provide extra tonnage that can cool your house faster, the air conditioning cycles are also much shorter. In theory, this may sound like a good thing, but those shorter cycles are ineffective at clearing out humidity.

As such, you can set the thermostat to 72 degrees all day long, but the humidity level may struggle to get below 60% which can leave you hot, sweaty, and uncomfortable indoors!

Over time, a lack of dehumidification can lead to poor indoor air quality.

Oversized furnaces can create hot and cold spots

During warmer months, we obviously want our homes to be cooler. During the winter months, we want our homes to be warm. However, in both cases, we want the air that is circulating throughout our homes to be consistent. A properly sized furnace based on the size of your home will provide that. An oversized Cary HVAC one will blast hot air to satisfy the thermostat's temperature settings, but will also create hot and cold spots throughout your home.

If the rooms you most often use are well heated, you may not even notice that you have a problem, but if your bed or your couch are positioned right over one of your vents, it can become quite uncomfortable.

Why are Oversized HVAC Systems Installed? 

We just learned that an oversized HVAC system can actually make you less comfortable, so why are these oversized systems installed in the first place? Let's explore some of the reasons.

HVAC sales consultants don't always know what they're talking about

While we try our best to inform our customers (including builders) on the right HVAC system to meet the needs of a home, we know that there are many HVAC salespeople who don't fully understand HVAC design. As such, when that salesperson goes to sell a piece of equipment, without doing a proper load calculation to determine the best size for a specific home they may sell oversell a system. It's an honest mistake but can make a huge difference.

You may have made energy upgrades to your home

Our customers are constantly making updates to their homes. Specifically, many of our customers are adding insulation, crawlspace encapsulation, air sealing, or replacing windows to create long-term energy savings. These are all worthwhile investments; however, by making many of these upgrades, your home won't require as large of an HVAC system.

Why not?

For one, if your current system was sized appropriately, energy upgrades may make it such that your Cary HVAC is now too big. We still think adding insulation, crawlspace encapsulation, air sealing or replacing your windows are all good investments, but dont' forget to consider the consequences of making those adjustments.

On the other hand, if your Cary HVAC was already too big, making energy improvements to your home will make that system even more oversized.

As such, making energy improvements to your home may save you money, but it can also make you less comfortable from a heating and air perspective. If you want to avoid this situation, you can always consult with our team first. We'd be happy to discuss how your upgrades will affect your Cary HVAC system.

Your home is surrounded by trees (or not)

Homes that are surrounded by trees have different heating and cooling needs than those who don't (example: new construction homes in which all the trees have been removed). During the summer months, "shady" homes tend to gain less heat. Therefore, their Cary HVAC unit doesn't have to work as hard as a home that has no shade to cool the home. During the winter, these same homes may have fewer leaves, but their furnace still won't have to work as hard.

If your home is surrounded by trees, you may need lower AC tonnage and more BTUs than houses without shade. The only way to know one way or another is to perform a load calculation (Manual J).

If you suspect that your Cary HVAC is too big, call Choice HVAC at 919-435-2711 and let us take a look at your current system or help you determine the proper size of the system to meet your home's needs.


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