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What is a BTU, and why should I care?

What is a BTU, and why should I care?

The British Thermal Unit (BTU) is a measure of heat energy. It is calculated as the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit. BTUs are used to assess the capacity of heating, cooling, and air conditioning systems, as well as to determine the energy consumption of appliances like furnaces and boilers and compare their energy efficiency.

BTU Loads

To understand how HVAC systems are properly sized for a home, it is important to consider the home’s specific heating and cooling needs. These needs are determined through a Manual J Heat Load Calculation, which considers factors such as the home’s orientation, insulation, window, and door sizes, and the number of occupants. The resulting BTU loads for heating and cooling are used to select the appropriate HVAC equipment through a separate manual, known as Manual S. This equipment must meet federal energy efficiency mandates, as determined by third-party ratings known as AHRI numbers, to provide a comfortable living environment while minimizing energy consumption.

Sizing Makes the Difference

At Aircon Service Company, we take the sizing of HVAC systems seriously. That’s why we perform a Manual J calculation on every home where we suggest equipment replacements. Not only is this required by Texas regulations, but it’s also the best way to guarantee the comfort of your home. In the past, it was common to simply replace systems with the same size, but this has resulted in numerous problems like high indoor humidity, short cycling, and reduced equipment lifespan. Aircon has found that over 80% of the systems we have evaluated were too large in some cases by up to two tons!

Having the right size equipment not only saves you money in the short term by being cheaper to purchase but also in the long term by consuming less energy. Proper sizing also ensures that your system can effectively dehumidify your home.

We’re Here to Help

At Aircon, we are dedicated to providing the best possible service for all of your HVAC needs. If you have any questions or concerns about your system, we are here to help. We offer free proposals for HVAC replacements, ensuring that you receive an accurate and cost-effective solution for your home. Our proposals are backed by an ACCA-approved Manual J, which takes into consideration the science of thermodynamics for the most efficient and effective results. You can trust us to provide you with a solution that is not just a salesman’s estimate, but a scientifically-based one.

Have more questions? We’d be happy to answer!