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A/C question


Chopped Liver
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Does anyone here know how to properly estimate the size A/C required for a house in FL?

Visited Cape San Blas this past weekend, and like the area.   Thinking I might want to buy a place there....but if I do, I'd like to have the A/C run on Solar during the day and use solar heating for water as well.

 

I'm clueless at proper sizing of a/c units, and of course that would drive the size of PV panels I would need.

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Square footage and ceiling height is how I estimated the size I had to buy this last october.

 

Also check were the unit is in the house. Most newer construction puts in garages on their side. This limits the type of unit that can fit. 

I was only able to put a max 18 seer rated unit in mine size restrictions.

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I'd suggest looking up several residential HVAC contractors in the area and let them know the approximate square footage of the house.  You may also have to tell them when it was built so they can estimate how well insulated the place is. Since they're in the area you should get a good idea from their responses what size unit you'll need.

 

If you want your solar panels alone - i.e. off the grid - to run your A/C I'd recommend making sure the inverter can handle the motor starting of the fan (that pushes the cold air through the house) and the compressors (that sit in unit outside). Most inverters don't handle motor starting currents very well, and you may have to upsize the inverter so it won't trip when the motors start.

 

If you use the solar panels in parallel with the utility connection, then you can use the utility to provide the motor starting current. The inverter will (or should) self-limit leaving the utility to supply the rest.  Not an ideal situation for the utility, but that's not your worry.

 

Solar hot water should be a no-brainer in Florida - at least as far as whether you'll get enough sunshine to make it feasible.  Whether it will be economical depends on what payback you want, how much capacity you want, and how sophisticated the system is.  Of course, if you main object is to 'be green' then payback becomes a minor consideration.

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I'd suggest looking up several residential HVAC contractors in the area and let them know the approximate square footage of the house.  You may also have to tell them when it was built so they can estimate how well insulated the place is. Since they're in the area you should get a good idea from their responses what size unit you'll need.

 

If you want your solar panels alone - i.e. off the grid - to run your A/C I'd recommend making sure the inverter can handle the motor starting of the fan (that pushes the cold air through the house) and the compressors (that sit in unit outside). Most inverters don't handle motor starting currents very well, and you may have to upsize the inverter so it won't trip when the motors start.

 

If you use the solar panels in parallel with the utility connection, then you can use the utility to provide the motor starting current. The inverter will (or should) self-limit leaving the utility to supply the rest.  Not an ideal situation for the utility, but that's not your worry.

 

Solar hot water should be a no-brainer in Florida - at least as far as whether you'll get enough sunshine to make it feasible.  Whether it will be economical depends on what payback you want, how much capacity you want, and how sophisticated the system is.  Of course, if you main object is to 'be green' then payback becomes a minor consideration.

Grassy ass......this is what I was looking for.

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How do solar panels hold up to Huricanes?

 

That's what I would want to know first as it may become quite cost prohibitive if you have to keep replacing stuff.

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How do solar panels hold up to Huricanes?

 

That's what I would want to know first as it may become quite cost prohibitive if you have to keep replacing stuff.

Just in the very early stages of consideration at this time....that may be an issue, though where I'm looking, it seemed like trees were a minimal consideration.  This PV panels would only have to contend with strong wind and rain.

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