Tired of High Energy Bills? Maybe Your AC Isn’t the Right Size

August 28, 2016
Ross and Witmer

An over- or undersized air conditioning unit isn’t just inefficient. It also costs you money. If you’re concerned about high energy bills, let our HVAC technicians evaluate the air conditioner in your Belmont, North Carolina, home. If the unit’s too big or small for your home, we can help you choose a more efficient model that won’t put such a big dent in your wallet every month.

Problems With an Oversized Air Conditioner

An oversized air conditioner might sound like a benefit. After all, more cooling power seems like it should translate to more effective cooling. However, an oversized air conditioner can actually thwart your energy-efficiency goals because they turn on and off more often. It’s like the fuel increase your car experiences in stop-and-go traffic. You get better efficiency when you’re cruising down the freeway.

When your air conditioner’s too big, it only has to run for a few minutes to cool down your home, even on the hottest day of the year. Then the temperature increases, so it cuts on again and runs for another few minutes. In addition to increasing your energy bills, the unit incurs more wear and tear, which shortens its lifespan. You’ll have to replace it sooner than you would a properly sized AC.

The other problem with an oversized air conditioner relates more to comfort than to energy efficiency. An air conditioner cools your home, but it also removes moisture from the air. Excess humidity can make your house feel warmer than the reading on your thermostat indicates, and an oversized AC doesn’t run long enough to reduce humidity levels. If you think you have an oversized unit, we can help you buy the perfect AC for your home.

Signs of an Oversized Air Conditioner

  • Your AC runs for 10 to 15 minutes, then shuts down, only to cut on half an hour later
  • The home feels warmer than the thermostat temperature indicates
  • Family members experience allergy symptoms because of the lack of filtration through the HVAC system
  • Surfaces in the home feel damp because of excess moisture
  • Your AC sounds louder than it should

Problems With an Undersized Air Conditioner

When your air conditioner isn’t big enough to cool your home efficiently, your energy bills can easily skyrocket. The unit has to run nonstop to meet the demand, so it consumes far more electricity than necessary. On extremely hot days, it might shut down entirely because the motor overheats or because the evaporator coils have frozen. Additionally, the temperature in your home might never reach the temperature you set on your thermostat.

Undersized air conditioners suffer from excess wear and tear just like their oversized counterparts. Since they run constantly or almost constantly, they never get a break. Plus, you’ll experience the opposite problem with humidity. Just as high humidity levels can make a home feel too warm, low humidity levels can cause issues like chronic dry skin, respiratory discomfort, flu-like symptoms, and even insomnia.

Signs of an Undersized Air Conditioner

  • The AC never seems to shut off
  • You experience poor indoor air quality
  • The system shuts down and the evaporator coils freeze
  • Your home’s actual temperature doesn’t reflect your thermostat settings
  • You feel too hot in your home

Choosing the Right Air Conditioner for Lower Energy Bills

We love helping our customers choose air conditioners that meet their precise needs, which starts with sizing. Numerous factors can play a role in determining the right size for your home’s AC:

  • Number of household occupants
  • Home square footage
  • Ceiling height
  • Geographical climate
  • Window, attic, and other insulation
  • Home layout, such as open or closed floor plan
  • Type and number of home appliances

We’ll consider these factors and more when advising you about the right capacity for your air conditioner. There’s a big difference between a 1-ton air conditioner and a 5-ton air conditioner, so we want to get the sizing right every time.

If you’re concerned about high energy bills, maybe your AC isn’t the right size. Call Ross & Witmer at 704-392-6188 so we can help you replace your air conditioner with one that will help you save money.

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