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The Importance of Correctly Sizing a New Heating System

It’s easy to keep your home warm when the temperature’s in the thirties, but when the thermometer’s at or below zero, it lays bare some flaws you may not have known your old system had. If you’re thinking of a new furnace or boiler, getting the right system — in the right size — is vital, and Lakeview Heating and Cooling can help.

Why Heating System Size Matters

A heating system that’s underpowered has to work harder for subpar results. That means higher heating bills, and more frequent repairs due to wear. A unit that’s oversized won’t do you any favors either, since a larger system won’t be as efficient, and may warm some parts of your house quickly while leaving other parts cold and drafty.

Common Sizing Methods

Most laypeople size their heating unit based on square footage and climate zone. In reality, it’s more complex than that. Furnace output matters, but so does efficiency. It’s more complicated than just asking at the local home supply store or comparing notes with a neighbor whose house is about the same size as yours.

Other Factors to Consider

Besides the number of floors, age and insulation of your home, and ceiling height, there are some other things to keep in mind. You may have rooms you don’t use often, like your attic or a guest bedroom. You may have great southern exposure (or very little). The existence of a basement or crawlspace can also influence how your home heats up. A good HVAC contractor takes all of this into consideration.

What About My Old Unit?

Using your old furnace or boiler as a guide isn’t always a good idea either. Contractors often decide it’s best to “go big or go home,” and we’ve already mentioned the issues with that. Another consideration is that newer units are much more energy efficient than their older counterparts. Finally, if you’ve renovated your home in the time since that older system was installed, the calculations now are much different.

How Do I Size My System Correctly?

The AACA (Air Conditioning Contractors of America) uses a standard called Manual J Load calculation. It uses room volume rather than square footage and accounts for age, insulation, construction materials, and a host of other variables. It takes longer, but the resulting calculation is a much better and more reliable fit. That accuracy will save you money over time.

Finding the Right Chicago Heating and Air Contractor

The average person doesn’t have the tools and knowledge for a Manual J Load assessment. That’s why you’re best off contacting a Chicago HVAC professional who can take your home and your needs into consideration and suggest the right new HVAC system for your home. Contact Lakeview Heating and Cooling for a new boiler, furnace or air conditioning consultation. Lakeview Heating and Cooling will provide you with expert consultation regarding the installation of a new boiler or furnace. Call us today.