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Old 03-28-2005, 01:36 PM   #1
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Central Air Purchase


AC is far from my area of expertise and my girlfriend and I are in the market for a central air unit this spring. I don't want to leave all my questions up to the salesperson so I'm coming here first.

Background: We have a 2-level home that is 3000 sq. feet (the sq. footage includes a finished basement apartment). The area we live in can be pretty warm (80F-95F) and even hotter with the humidity (over 100F with the humidex) in the summer time. The house is less than 2 years old and is fairly efficient.

My main question is, will a 1- ton AC unit be enough or should we get a 2-ton unit?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 03-28-2005, 02:20 PM   #2
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Decks, I'm thinking none of the above, I'm thinking 4 tons. Sounds like the same conditions that we have.
You need an A/C pro to come in and do a survey. Most sales people are just that.

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Old 03-29-2005, 01:59 PM   #3
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Teetor,

I'm not question your advice but I think I may have overstated the weather conditions here a bit. Our average temps. are probably closer to 75F-80F with spells of the extremes I mentioned above. My recollection on the last new house of a similar size that I owned was that we had a 1 1/2 ton AC unit but I can't remember exactly. The difference I am running into now is that I have the basement apartment and my tenants to worry about. Up here we got away with a fairly cool summer last year so I put off the AC purchase until this spring. I want to make sure it's cool enough for us and them but don't want to freeze anyone out. Alos, I wanted advise from here before letting an AC salesman into my house.

Thanks again.
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Old 03-29-2005, 06:19 PM   #4
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You may want to look up HVAC Doc in the members and e-mail him. I'm pretty sure that he will tell you to have a survey done. He calls it a shedule J or something of the sort.
You can find a calculator here. http://www.eere.energy.gov/consumeri...alculator.html
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Old 03-29-2005, 10:48 PM   #5
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You need someone to do a load calculation on the home. That is your first step. There are two ways of doing them. A whole house and room by room. The whole house just addresses the BTU requirements in heating and cooling for the entire structure. The room by room will tell CFM requirements for each room and if your ducts were installed a certian way it would be possible to add thermostats and auto zone dampers. for better comfort control.
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Old 03-30-2005, 07:22 AM   #6
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Thanks guys. I appreciate all of your advice.

FYI, the salesman that knocked on the door last year just opened his book with all the "specials" but didn't even ask to come in the house to do any of the things you mentioned. I'll know to look for someone that wants to do the rights steps before trying to sell me an A/C unit.

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