How many BTU in a 1 – 8 ton air conditioner?

A ton of refrigeration is a unit of power used in the field of air conditioning and refrigeration.

One ton of refrigeration is defined as the amount of heat required to melt one ton of ice at 32°F over a 24-hour period.

In the context of air conditioning, a “ton” does not refer to weight, but to the amount of heat removed by the air conditioner.

This is equivalent to the rate of removing heat equal to 12,000 British thermal units per hour (Btu/h) or 200 Btu/min. The higher the tonnage, the greater the cooling capacity.

The air conditioner’s tonnage information is typically located on a sticker or tag affixed to the side or back of the unit.

Converting Tons to BTUs and Watts: A simple guide and conversion table 

To convert tons of refrigeration to BTUs, you can use the fact that one ton is equal to 12,000 BTUs per hour (BTU/h).

This is the formula you can use convert tonnage to BTUs:

So, for a 1-ton air conditioner, the cooling capacity would be 12,000 BTUs per hour. For an 8-ton air conditioner, the cooling capacity would be 8 times that, or 8 x 12,000 = 96,000 BTU/h.

If you need to convert tons directly to watts or kilowatts, use the following formula:

For those who prefer a simpler approach without formulas and calculations, refer to the conversions between BTU/h, Tons, and kW provided in the table below:

BTU/h Ton kW
6,000 0.5 1.76
12,000 1 3.52
18,000 1.5 5.28
24,000 2 7.03
30,000 2.5 8.79
36,000 3 10.6
42,000 3.5 12.3
48,000 4 14.1
54,000 4.5 15.8
60,000 5 17.6

Alternatively, you can save this image for future reference whenever needed:

Please keep in mind that the exact BTUs for a specific tonnage can vary based on the efficiency of the unit and the specific model. The above shows that there is a standard relationship between tonnage and BTUs.

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