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ACCA Manual S – Residential Equipment Selection

For years, many have believed that residential HVAC equipment selection was based only on the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) Manual J. In other words, a Manual J cooling load of 30,000 BTU/h would require a 2.5-ton air conditioner, correct?


That is actually incorrect!

The ACCA Manual J is only used to calculate the heating and cooling loads of the building. The current, nationally recognized ACCA Manual J (8th Edition) instructs HVAC system designers to use the ACCA Manual S Residential Equipment Selection in order to select equipment that is correctly sized (see Section 10-4).

Enerlogic’s experienced and trained professionals provide accurate independent, third-party HVAC system design for your homes, ensuring quality and comfort for your homeowners.


ACCA Manual S is an ANSI standard, providing guidance for interpreting and applying original equipment manufacturers’ (OEM) expanded performance data. Manual S is used to correctly select equipment that meets the system requirements, based on the design conditions used for calculating the loads. They include:

  • Heating
  • Sensible cooling
  • Latent cooling

ACCA Manual S sets equipment sizing limits to ensure equipment capacities maintain your customers comfort while preventing the problems associated with over or under sizing equipment. These issues include:

  • Health issues associated with excessive humidity
  • Larger energy consumption
  • Callbacks from comfort complaints
  • Greater wear and tear on the equipment,
  • Higher, upfront construction costs (larger equipment is more expensive)

ACCA Manuals J and S must be performed on and submitted for every home per the Mechanical Section of the 2015 International Residential Code (IRC):


M1401.3 Equipment and appliance sizing. Heating and cooling equipment and appliances shall be sized in accordance with ACCA Manual S or other approved sizing methodologies based on building loads calculated in accordance with ACCA Manual J or other approved heating and cooling calculation methodologies.”


For more information, download the ACCA Manual S Brochure, which includes a checklist.

Our staff at Enerlogic would be happy to assist you with all of your ACCA Manual J load calculation and ACCA Manual S equipment selection questions and provide both design and installation verification services in a timely manner.

At Enerlogic we would be happy to answer all of your HVAC System design questions and provide you with design services in a timely manner.

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