How many times have you heard the phrase bigger is better? Sure, we all like to assume that bigger is always the better way to go, but is it? In certain situations, yes. Others, such as that of your furnace, not so much. Buying a unit that is too large for your home is actually going to cause the unit to power on and off far more than what it needs to. In the end, your system is going to get damaged and the efficiency will decline.
In all honesty, there are a number of different variables that come into play when it comes to choosing the right size for your new furnace. To begin going through the process of determining the right size unit, let’s take a look at a few of the basics.
A furnace is measured in BTUs. When you look through all of the different furnace models, you are going to find an input BTU number on it. This number is representative of the amount of energy being used whenever the unit is in operation. Output BTU numbers indicate the amount of heat that the unit produces. When determining the furnace size needed to accommodate the needs of your home, you need to pay attention to the output BTU number.
Various variables all play a role in determining the size of unit needed, such as:
- Materials used to build your home
- The weather conditions where you live
- Size of your home, including the basement and attic
Homes that are located in those regions where the temperature is going to vary widely are going to end up needing a larger furnace. Furnaces that are too small aren’t going to be capable of heating a smaller home during periods of immense cold. Generally speaking, smaller homes are going to need a smaller furnace. Variables such as construction materials and insulation can impact that trend substantially.
To help you determine what size furnace you need for your home, consider the following:
Look at your old furnace. If you are planning on replacing your existing model, start by figuring out what size it is. Most of the time, you will find the information on the outside of your current unit. If you were happy with the unit’s performance, you might want to look at a furnace that is similar to the one you have.
Check with a local HVAC company. By calling in the pros, they can come out and inspect your space to determine what size unit is going to work the best for you. Once you know what you need in terms of BTUs, you can go about finding the furnace that is going to work for your budget.