Understanding your AC unit’s Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating lets you know how much energy and money it needs to operate each year. Whether you’re getting a new AC installation, in the market for a new home, or simply curious about if you have an energy-efficient AC, SEER ratings can be intimidating.
My Guy Heating & Air, your expert Escondido air conditioning company, wants you to find the best unit for your needs by breaking SEER down to the basics. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about SEER ratings and make an informed decision about your HVAC system.
SEER Rating Explained
The SEER rating measures AC and heat pump cooling efficiency, including ductless systems. This is calculated by dividing an AC unit’s cooling output over a cooling season by the electrical energy it uses during that season in Watt-Hours. To mimic a typical cooling season, use a constant indoor temperature and outdoor temperatures that range from 60 to over 100 degrees.
Like your car’s mpg(Miles Per Gallon), your system’s SEER rating is the highest estimate. Sitting stuck in traffic lowers your mpg in the same way certain weather conditions lower your AC efficiency.
What Is A Good Rating?
SEER calculations sound confusing, but it is saying that systems using less energy get higher ratings. And the more energy-efficient a unit is, the more cooling you get for your money. But this rating is an average — your home’s size, insulation, current ductwork, and windows also affect your system’s efficiency.
Most modern air conditioners have SEER ratings that are anywhere from 13 to 21, a significant improvement from older units with ratings as low as 6.
The U.S Department of Energy controls the minimum SEER ratings across the country in an effort to save energy. They adjust them over the years and according to region. California is considered a southern state, so our minimum enforced SEER rating is 14. Our warm summer climate means higher ratings should save energy compared to northern states, where ACs are not used as often.
Benefits Of A High SEER Rating
Air conditioning units with higher SEER ratings provide more effective cooling power in your home. This creates a higher level of indoor comfort. They use multi-stage features to cool more consistently and maintain temperatures instead of starting and stopping throughout the day. Their variable-speed compressors and blowers make your home much more comfortable than old, single-speed units which can create hot, cold, or humid spots.
Energy-efficient systems aren’t just better for the environment, they also save you money. Especially if your system is 20 years old, struggling in the summer heat, upgrading to a higher-rated unit will greatly lower your monthly energy costs. Higher-rated systems have a bigger price tag than lower ones, but you will have long-term savings and comfort.
My Guy Is Always Nearby
Sifting through all the information about new AC units can get overwhelming quickly, but don’t let it get the better of you. If you have questions about SEER ratings, requirements or need help deciding which cooling system best suits your needs, give us a call! My Guy Heating & Air serves residents and commercial businesses in Escondido, San Diego, San Marcos, and the surrounding areas with top-quality HVAC services. We can help make your home comfy, cool, and energy-efficient.