What’s The Right Size Air Conditioner For My Home

When you shop for a new air conditioner, it isn’t as easy as picking one up off the shelves at your favorite store. You can’t order one online and expect it to work well for your home. 

That’s because with an air conditioner, the right size matters. If you don’t install one that is adequately sized, you’ll have either too much or too little air conditioning power, which means a home that isn’t comfortable, and you’re spending more on your utility bills than necessary. 

How big should your air conditioner be? Take all of this into consideration before speaking with an air conditioner specialist. 

Start with a few questions


Air conditioner size doesn’t just depend on the square footage of your home. There are many other factors that should be used to determine the proper size. 

  • How many windows and doors are there in your home?
  • What direction do the windows face
  • How much light streams in throughout the day?
  • How old is your home?
  • Is your home well insulated? 
  • What landscaping do you have in place?

Air conditioners are designed to keep your home at a steady temperature throughout the day. If the sun is streaming in for hours at a time, it’s going to require more energy to keep it cool. Likewise, an older home may have improper insulation, which means more of your conditioned air is seeping out through cracks. You’ll need a bigger air conditioner to handle these conditions. 

An air conditioners capacity

When you start shopping for air conditioners, you’ll notice they are typically sold by tonnage, with the smallest being one ton, and the largest around five ton. This is cooling capacity. 

This matters depending on the layout of your home. 

If you have a large, sprawling ranch, you may well exceed the five ton requirement, making your home difficult to cool with one unit. You may also have a multi-level home with lots of living space on separate levels, all of which have their own unique issues when trying to cool. 

In these cases, it might benefit you to separate your cooling needs into zones, and utilize different air conditioners for each zone. A house with a five tone capacity might actually do better with a two ton unit to cool the upstairs, and a three ton unit to keep your main living space at the proper temperature.  

While it may seem like a lot of upfront cost to install two units, it could produce savings for years to come. Your air conditioner won’t have to work harder to try and keep your entire home at a comfortable temperature, which means overall savings on your utility bills each month. Plus with different zoning, you can choose what temperature to keep each zone at throughout the day. Maybe your bedrooms can be a little warmer in the day when you’re in the main living space, and vice versa at night. 

What questions do you have about installing the right size air conditioner inside your home?

It’s important to note that no matter what size you install, or how many air conditioners you use to keep your space comfortable, regularly scheduled maintenance will ensure you make the most of your HVAC units, and keep them operating the way they should. 

How can we help you stay cool this summer?

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