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HVAC - Sizing | Residential | Code Officials

Heating and cooling consume a large portion of building energy use.
Properly sized heating and/or cooling equipment is critical to reducing
inefficiencies. HVAC sizing requirements help improve occupant com- HVAC Sizing – Section 403.6 2009 IECC
fort through appropriate conditioning of indoor air.
Detailed sizing instructions can be found in
Current Code M1401.3 of the International Residential Code

The 2009 IECC Section 403.6 states that HVAC systems must be sized Mandatory for all climate zones
in accordance with Section M1401.3 of the International Residential
Software is available to compute sizing calcu-
Code (IRC). This requires the use of ACCA Manual S and J calculation
Detailed information can be found at:
Previous Code
DOE EERE information on HVAC sizing
HVAC sizing requirements in the 2006 and 2009 editions of the IECC
are identical. Prior to the 2006 version, the requirements specified the PNNL “How to Size HVAC Systems Correctly”
use of the ASHRAE “Handbook of Fundamentals.”
Ten key factors to help keep HVAC sizing cal-
Exemptions culations on target

Requirements covered in the 2009 IECC Section 403.6 are mandatory Professional Remodeler article “When Size
for all climate zones. Matters”

Building code officials must be aware of the requirements covered in
the 2009 IECC and need to ensure that:

The permit applicant shows that the ACCA Manual S and J proce-
dures have been followed, using either hand or applicable soft-
ware calculations and reports

Typical Problems
Standard issues/concerns that arise include:

HVAC contractor or sub-contractor does not use the required

standards and does a rough estimate of size instead

Contractors do not know how to conduct a manual J or S calcula-

tion Figure 1: Software for Manual J Calculations

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