How Do I Know What Size Furnace to Buy?

How Do I Know What Size Furnace to Buy?

As Fountain Hills and East Valley residents, the concept of heating your home may be somewhat foreign. After all, you spend most of the year keeping the heat out of your home.

But there are a few months where a furnace makes a big difference in your comfort.

And if you are looking for a new furnace, one of the most confusing parts can be knowing what size to buy. Here are a few tips to make your decision easier.

How Furnace Sizes Are Measured
The first step to finding the correctly sized furnace for your home is understanding how they are measured.

Furnace’s heating capacity is measured in thousands of British Thermal Units (BTU). But keep in mind that two furnaces with the same BTU can actually be different “sizes.”

Furnaces are rated based on how much fuel energy they consume when running. But the amount of energy they output can be different based on their efficiency rating.

For example, a 100,000 BTU furnace with 95% AFUE outputs 95,000 BTU while a 100,000 BTU furnace with 80% AFUE only outputs 80,000 BTU. So when comparing furnace sizes, make sure you are comparing apples to apples (the output BTU).

The Importance of Getting a Correctly Sized Furnace
You, like many others, may think that “bigger is better”, when it comes to purchasing a new furnace.

This is not always true. You definitely want to stay away from a furnace that is too small, but buying one that is too big can also be a problem.

  • Consequences of a furnace that is too small – If you buy a furnace that is too small for your home, it will struggle to keep your house warm on cold nights. Furnaces that are too small will also make your energy bill higher.
  • Consequences of a furnace that is too big – Furnaces that are too big for your home can be a problem because they will heat up your home too quickly, resulting in inefficient operation known as “short cycling.”

Selecting the Right Size Furnace
The industry standard for calculating the correct furnace size for your home is a Manual J load calculation. This calculation will give you the most accurate recommendation as it takes into account a variety of factors in your home, including:

  • Size of home
  • Construction materials
  • Number of doors and windows
  • Insulation levels
  • Size and layout of rooms

To get a Manual J load calculation on your home, contact a HVAC professional in the Fountain Hills or East Valley area.

You can also look at the size of your old furnace and compare it to similar homes in your area by asking your neighbors. However, if those sizes are wrong, you could still end up with a furnace that is too big or too small.

Don’t forget: finding the right sized furnace for your home will improve your home’s comfort and help you get the best energy efficiency from it.

Looking for a furnace for your home? Fountain Hills Air Conditioning & Heating can help you find the heater that fits your budget and your home’s needs. Schedule a free estimate online today.