Understanding HVAC Ratings before an Air Conditioner Replacement

April 30, 2015

When you’re looking into an air conditioner replacement, you’ll find that the HVAC industry is full of acronyms and confusing terms. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with a few of these acronyms and other common terms to be able to successfully research your purchase—notably the terms that help interpret energy efficiency. Let’s look at some of these terms.

What is EER?

EER stands for “energy-efficiency ratio.” It measures the energy efficiency of an air conditioner when the outside temperature is at or above a certain degree. It’s best to go with the higher ratings on this one because the higher the EER rating is, the greater the energy efficiency. You could be saving money on energy in no time.

ENERGY STAR® Certification

You’re probably familiar with ENERGY STAR certification, but it’s not usually explained very well. ENERGY STAR was created in 1992 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The goal was to protect the environment while saving money on energy by using more energy-efficient products. Products must pass rigorous third-party testing and meet a specific number of requirements to become ENERGY STAR certified. So, when you notice the blue ENERGY STAR label while you’re shopping for an air conditioner replacement, you’ll be certain it will save you money.

ENERGY STAR - Most Efficient

The ENERGY STAR Most Efficient designation recognizes the products with the greatest efficiency among those that are ENERGY STAR certified. These phenomenal products represent the leading edge in energy efficient products each year.

SEER – Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio

The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) is the degree of your air conditioner’s or heat pump’s cooling efficiency. The most notable difference between SEER ratings and EER ratings is that SEER is a measurement of an air conditioner’s efficiency over a complete cooling season, rather than its efficiency at a set temperature level. Like the EER ratings, higher the SEER ratings are an indication of better energy efficiency. More energy efficiency equates to more money savings and a decreased impact on the environment. If you have an older air conditioner, the SEER rating could be as low as 8, while recent, more efficient models range from ratings of 13 – 23.

It’s almost certain you’ll find more acronyms and unfamiliar terms when you are researching your air conditioner replacement, but you’ll be more prepared by understanding these terms. If you have any questions about terminology you come across in your quest or if you need help with your air conditioner replacement, call Cytech Heating & Cooling L.C. in the Rio Grande Valley at 956-381-1162.