Load Calculations 101: Understanding the Basics

Load Calculation

At Air Dynamics, we want you to be informed on all of the ins and outs of the HVAC business to help you make the best decisions for yourself and home. When it comes to purchasing a new HVAC system, one of the most important details to consider is the size that will be needed. This is where load calculations come into play.

What are load calculations?

In HVAC terms, a “load” is how much heating or cooling a home needs. Therefore, a load calculation is the process of determining the right-sized HVAC system that will best heat or cool a home.

Why are they important?

From footage size to insulation levels, every home is different. If you pick a system that is too big or small for your home, several issues can occur. These issues include:

  • Uncomfortable Temperatures: Oversized and undersized systems can either put out too much or not enough, making a home’s temperature less than ideal.
  • Moisture: Because oversized systems fulfill the cooling load quickly and run in short stop/start cycles, they can make it difficult to properly dehumidify a home.
  • High Electric Bills: Undersized systems can end up working hard to fulfill the cooling load, which ends up using more electricity. Likewise, oversized systems’ stop/start cycles also use more energy. All of this can take a toll on your wallet!

For more information on oversized system issues: 5 Reasons Oversized HVAC Equipment Is A Problem

What is the process?

First, we gather information and measurements to determine the square footage of the home and draw up a draft of the home’s floor plan.

Hand-drawn floor plan.

We then input that information into the Wrightsoft design calculation software. This software takes into account various factors of your home. These factors include window type, insulation levels and the direction that it faces.

Same home designed using the Wrightsoft software.

After the home is designed, the software gives us details on the exact HVAC system (brand and model) that is needed to deliver the right air flow for your home.

This time-lapse video below showcases more on how the Wrightsoft design process is done:

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