You might think bigger is better, but that isn’t necessarily true when it comes to furnace size. If you’re replacing your old furnace with a new one, you must make sure the new unit is sized correctly for your home. Learn how to select the right size furnace for your home and what could go wrong if you get a furnace that’s too large or too small for your home.
Why You Pay More for a Furnace That’s Not the Right Size
A furnace that’s too small for your home won’t be able to heat your home properly. In a best-case scenario, your small furnace will wear out quickly due to overuse. In a worst-case scenario, your furnace will wear out and you’ll be uncomfortably chilled in the meantime.
If your home furnace is too small, you may experience cold pockets or notice that you need frequent maintenance visits to keep things working.
If the furnace puts out 20 percent more heat than you need, you’ll pay more over the lifetime of the unit. In addition to the hefty upfront fees for the larger furnace, you’ll need routine maintenance. A large furnace will run through the stop-start cycle frequently, which means extra wear and tear. A large furnace will also lead to massive utility bills, because each time the furnace starts up, it eats a lot of power.
Now that you understand what happens when a furnace is too big or too small, what happens when a furnace is the right size?
When you have an ideal furnace for your home, you’ll be warm and comfortable no matter the weather. Your furnace will still need regular maintenance to operate efficiently, but the unit won’t get extra wear and tear. As a result, it will last as long as intended rather than require premature replacement due to overuse.
How to Determine Furnace Size
Once your existing furnace starts acting funny, you’ll need to think about replacing it. Furnaces come in increments of 15,000 to 20,000 BTU. Knowing the square footage of your home will help you select the right size furnace, but there are more variables to consider, too.
Have an HVAC technician perform a load calculation to evaluate the size furnace you need before you start shopping for a replacement furnace. A load calculation looks at things like your home’s size, direction, solar heat gain, windows, insulation, and climate to determine the best size furnace for your home.
By selecting the right size furnace, you can spend money efficiently while reducing wear and tear on the home system. As a result, your new furnace will last a long time and you’ll be comfortable no matter how cold it gets.