What is a BTU? (British Thermal Unit)

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What is a BTU? (British Thermal Unit)

If you’ve seen the abbreviation “BTU” on heating and cooling products or noticed it listed on your energy bill and wondered what does that means, you’ve come to the right place for answers.

What is a BTU?

BTU measures the amount of heat required to raise or lower the temperature of one pound of water one degree Fahrenheit.

When it comes to heat pumps or furnaces, the BTU number refers to the heat output.

With air conditioners, the BTU number refers to the amount of energy used to remove heat from the air.

How many BTU’s do you need?

Every heating and cooling need is different, so there is not a one-size-fits-all approach.

The power you need for your home is going to depend on several factors.

  • Size of your house
  • Type and quality of insulation
  • The type and size of your windows
  • Location of home
  • Height of your ceilings

Is It Better To Have Higher Or Lower BTU?

A higher number of BTUs doesn’t necessarily mean it’s better.

The power you need for your home can depend on the size of your house, your ductwork, and the type of windows and insulation.

Typically, whole-home units range from 60,000 to 80,000 and above.

The larger your home, the higher the BTU you will probably want. BTU can also be a good way to compare the capacity of similarly priced units.

If you are having difficulty, a professional HVAC company can be a great help in determining the appropriate size unit for your home.

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