Question about Ruud UAKA042 Air Conditioner

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Compressor size What determines if you need a 3 ton compressor vs. a 5 ton compressor. In other words, what is the difference for cooling a home. Is bigger always better?

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Square footage is how you determine what size of an AC you need, say two bedroom house with 1500 square feet would require a 3 ton unit but I would go to a 4 or 5 ton depending on brand and what you may do in the future, Like adding a bedroom or bathroom and how many people will be living in the house, a heat pump normally last longer the bigger it is and is more efficient than a smaller size. Just think like this, a 3 ton will run 30 minutes to an hour longer to cool the same space as a 5 ton so if the five ton does it 30 minutes faster it will not run as long. And when it has to pull down the temperature again it will do it much faster. So less run time means faster heat or cooling and less energy is used. I have found that the bigger units are made better and last longer as a general rule. And to understand the 3-ton and 5 ton let me say that it means how long it takes 3 tons of ice to bring the temperature down 10 degrees, the old BTU’s British thermal units. However the bigger the unit the more well built it is normally and the less maintenance required. 5 tons of ice would get it cooler faster. But one thing to keep in mind a heat pump is only good for 20 degrees temperature range, for instance if the high range is 80 then the low side would be 60 in order for it to be efficient so if you have it set in the house at 72 degrees on the high side and low side would be 52 degrees. But the larger the unit the less time it would take it to recover from the heat differential.

Posted on Jul 22, 2009

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A better solution than undersizing the fan (which would decrease your airflow and probably not satisfy the household as well) would be to change the deadband in your thermostat. (Disclaimer: best solution is always to have a properly sized unit!).
Most programmable thermostats have a "deadband" that can be programmed in. This deadband is a certain number of degrees, in heating and/or cooling, where the thermostat will not call the system even though you have reached a threshold temperature. I.e. System is set to call for cooling at 76 degrees. there is a 3 degree deadband. When the Tstat reads 76 it will add the deadband (3) and not call for cooling until the room temperature is 79. This will prevent the compressor from cycling quite so much.
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