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June 27, 2013

Manual J and Manual D: Why Your A/C Tech Should Be Thoroughly Versed

Manual J and Manual D: Why Your A/C Tech Should Be Thoroughly VersedDo you have confidence in your HVAC professional’s ability to properly install your new heating and cooling systems? One way to be sure is determining whether your contractor utilizes the industry-standard load calculation tools Manual J and Manual D. By taking the time to correctly size your equipment before installation, system efficiency and effectiveness will be maximized.

Why do load calculations matter?
Developed by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA), Manual J and Manual D are a valuable resource for HVAC contractors. Manual J enables your technician to determine three things: how much heated air your space will require during the winter, how much heat must be removed during the summer, and how much humidity will need to be evacuated from the house in order to keep you and your family comfortable. It’s wise to work with a professional who takes things one step further and performs Manual S calculations to find the perfectly matched heating or cooling system for your specific needs. This is essential because a system that’s too small won’t be able to meet your demands, whereas an oversized system will consume excess energy as it continuously cycles on and off. These short cycles will also create moisture problems.

Manual D is also instrumental in selecting the correct HVAC equipment for your home. This tool helps contractors to evaluate and/or design a home’s ductwork. This ensures that the ducts are the correct size and are laid out in such a way that they will be compatible with a specific heating or cooling system.

Why should I expect from my contractor?

The first step to properly sizing your HVAC systems involves conducting a Manual J load calculation. In keeping with the latest ACCA standards, your contractor should consider factors such as:

  • Local climate
  • Home size and orientation
  • Number of windows
  • Landscaping
  • Heat-producing appliances
  • Number of occupants
  • Insulation
  • Airtightness

From here, Manuals S and D will be based upon the numbers found during the Manual J assessment.

For more information on Manual J and Manual D, please contact us at Paschal Heat, Air and Geothermal. We serve residents of northwest Arkansas.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Northwest Arkansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about Manual J, Manual D and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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