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How Much Heating Power Do I Need?

If you are preparing to install a new heating system in your Cary, NC home for the coming winter, one issue you will have to face is the amount of heat you will need to stay comfortable. How much heating power do you actually need for your comfort?

Your instincts might have told you that you should get the largest heater possible, since that will save you from getting cold on the bitterest days of winter, well worth the extra expense. You would rather have the option of turning the furnace or heat pump down a few degrees on the thermostat than have a heater that can’t reach your target temperature.

But this is not a good idea. A heater too large for the space it’s supposed to heat will begin to “short cycle,” meaning it will reach its target temperature so rapidly that it will shut down before its heating cycle is completed. You can expect an overlarge heater to turn on and off numerous times. This means a system that works too hard and will begin to wear down rapidly; and an additional energy drain, since a heater uses the most amount of power when it starts up. It will also not heat all parts of your home effectively, since the heating system will not run long enough to evenly distribute the heat throughout your home.

Of course, too small a heating system won’t be able to keep your home warm on the coldest days of winter. If your heating system is constantly running to try to reach the right temperature, that can also cause higher utility bills.

There is no straightforward answer to the question of how much heating power you need—at least, not on a general information blog like this. Your house has its own specific requirements, which have to do with size, the number of residents, the placement of windows, the insulation, and your access to a fuel source, as well as many other factors. To find out how much heat will do the job for you this winter heating your Cary, NC home, you’ll need to have HVAC experts inspect your home and perform a heat load calculation—an involved algorithm that compiles data about your home—to give you a definite answer about heating system installation.

If you trust to Raleigh Heating & Air and our NATE-certified technicians, you will be on the road toward a great heating installation. Contact us soon, before the deep winter cold starts!

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We understand that installing a new heating or air conditioning system can be a significant investment. We help take the stress out of your installation project by offering the
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