Bigger may be better in a lot of things, but that is not true in the case of air conditioners. You want to purchase one that is a perfect fit for your Bay Area home. Undersized system may not be able to keep you comfortable. But, an oversized system can cause problems that are much worse. These are 4 reasons why you should not get an oversized system.
But, before that you should understand what short-cycling means in HVAC terminology.
Typically, a central cooling system will turn on and off 2 – 3 times in an hour. The thermostat is in control of this. Oversized air conditioners start short-cycling. This means that your air conditioner will cool a room for a few minutes before turning off. And, when the temperature increases to more than what you set on the thermostat, it will kick back in.
Instead of steady cooling of a home, short-cycling causes huge blasts of cold air to circulate the house at intermittent intervals. The air doesn’t get enough time to circulate properly which causes other issues outlined in this post.
1. Fluctuating Temperature
Temperature begins fluctuating by a few degrees even when the central air conditioner works at its best. This is worsened in case of an oversized system. With sudden blasts of cold air, there will be certain parts of the home that will be freezing, while others remain warm. The situation won’t improve because the air conditioner won’t remain on for enough time.
You will feel hotter if the house has more water vapor. Dehumidification is a vital component of the air conditioning process. An oversized air conditioner will make the home more humid because it will keep short-cycling. A system needs to remain on for a particular length of time to effectively dehumidify the area.
3. Loud Noises
An air conditioner makes noise like any other mechanical appliance. Bigger systems tend to make more noise. Sound of a cooling system is usually not that bad. However, this is only when the cooling system you choose is right for your home. Bigger systems are made for bigger houses. There is more room in bigger houses to dissipate the noise. But, a big system in a small house will just roar away. You may notice the sound more than you would if you had a right fit.
Bigger air conditioners cost more. Most people don’t mind the extra cost thinking bigger is better. But, did you know that an oversized system that short-cycles actually causes you to lose money by way of utility bills. Air conditioning systems draw in a lot of power when the compressor comes on. In fact, this is true for most machines.
You are essentially paying more each month because of short-cycling than you would have if you would have let the system remain on for a little longer.
Wear and tear on moving parts is another way you are losing money. Whenever an air conditioner fires up, it causes the moving parts to wear down a little more. This is mainly because the air conditioner is not designed to turn on and off so often. You may end up burning your system before its time.