Before Investing in HVAC Upgrades, Do the Load CalculationsBefore you upgrade your HVAC system, it’s vital that your contractor does the proper load calculations first, so you purchase cooling or heating equipment that’s matched to your particular home. Professional heating and cooling specialists must do the math on your behalf for the very best installation.

The U.S. Department of Energy stresses that ducts and HVAC systems should conform to Manuals J and D for economy and efficiency. These are load calculation protocols developed by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America that heat gain and loss in your residence or business, as well as duct design and size. The results are translated by computer software so your structure is properly cooled (or heated) and so you don’t buy oversized or undersized equipment. Manual calculations are a thing of the past and are frequently wrong. Both Manuals J and D formulate the appropriate load calculations and ductwork compatibility to create a comfortable and energy-saving climate in your home:

  • Manual J measures every room in your house, calculating the heat gain under the most severe heat and humidity. Your contractor cannot provide you with the properly sized equipment without these numbers. An A/C unit that’s too big wastes energy and your money; one that’s too small can’t handle the load and will compromise your level of comfort.
  • Manual J provides calculations that take into consideration our Florida climate. Its tables let your contractor measure your installed insulation, window-glass area and orientation, the energy load from your large appliances, and the air-leakage rate of your building. It even considers the number of people in your family and the energy demand of your lighting. These numbers – along with the cubic footage of your home and its number of levels – will determine the correct size of your A/C or heat pump installation.
  • Manual D gauges the design and size of your duct system, including the diameter of your ducts, how many returns and registers you require, and how to configure the duct runs and how they enter your A/C equipment and your rooms. These results are directly based on those from Manual J. If your ductwork isn’t right, it will compromise the efficiency and performance of your HVAC upgrade.

Robert R. McGill Air Conditioning, Inc. serves eastern Palm Beach, northern Broward and southern Martin counties; contact us online, or call 561-588-2630 for more information.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Palm Beach County, Florida about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). 

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