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 filled to the brim with acronyms and baffling terms. You’ll want to become familiar with some of these acronyms and other frequently used terms to be able to successfully research your purchase—especially the terms that help describe energy efficiency. Let’s go through some of these terms.

What is EER?

EER is an acronym for “energy-efficiency ratio.” It measures the energy efficiency of an air conditioner when the outdoor temperature is at or above a certain level. You’ll want to go with the higher ratings on this one because the higher the EER rating is, the greater the energy efficiency. You could be seeing lower utility bills in no time.

ENERGY STAR® Certification

You’ve probably heard of ENERGY STAR certification, but it’s commonly not explained very well. ENERGY STAR was established in 1992 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The goal was to protect the environment while helping consumers save money on energy by using more energy-efficient products. Products must endure rigorous third-party testing and meet all of the requirements to become ENERGY STAR certified. So, when you notice the blue ENERGY STAR label while you’re in the market for an air conditioner replacement, you can count on it saving 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 extraordinary 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 big difference between SEER ratings and EER ratings is that SEER measures an air conditioner’s efficiency over a complete cooling season, rather than its efficiency at a designated temperature level. Like the EER ratings, higher the SEER ratings mean better energy efficiency. More energy efficiency leads to more money savings and less of an impact on the environment. If you’ve had your air conditioner for a while, the SEER rating could be as low as 8, while newer, more efficient models range from ratings of 13 – 23.

Of course you’ll find more acronyms and unfamiliar jargon when you are looking into your air conditioner replacement, but you’ll be a lot more informed by knowing these terms. If you have any questions about terminology you come across in your search or if you need advice about your air conditioner replacement, call Lycoming Heating Company in Williamsport at 570-244-2510.