Hansberger Refrigeration Blog: Your AC Repair Resource

The Homeowner’s Guide to Air Condtioner Ratings

The Homeowner's Guide to Air Condtioner RatingsHere in Southwest Arizona, cooling efficiency is crucial if you don’t want to go bankrupt air conditioning your home for much of the year. That’s why air conditioner ratings are an essential tool when shopping for an A/C upgrade. The ratings show how well a particular air conditioning system turns electricity into cooling in a home or business.

While several different efficiency ratings are used for A/C’s, the main one used the popular split-system central air conditioner is the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. The SEER system runs up to 23 with the most efficient A/C at the top. The number is obtained by dividing electrical input into cooling output. In the U.S., the minimum SEER that manufacturers must abide by is 13 for split-system A/Cs and 14 for heat pump air conditioners.

To qualify for the Energy Star, the federal government’s logo for energy-efficient products and systems, split-system A/Cs and heat pumps must achieve at least SEER 15 (along with other criteria of Energy Star certification).

So why doesn’t everybody just buy the highest SEER air conditioner they can find? There’s a catch — the cost of an air conditioner goes up right along with the SEER number. Your deliberations on whether to go with the lowest available efficiency level or the highest, or somewhere in between, should consider several factors. They include climate, expected usage and expected length of ownership. The longer and more you expect to use your A/C, the more likely your energy savings will cover the extra cost of a higher-SEER system.

So, considering those factors, a Yuma resident who expects to live in his home for the long term should consider investing in a high-efficiency cooling system. On the other extreme, someone who lives in a northern climate, is not at home a lot, and expects to move to another house within the next five years, has no reason to opt for anything but the low-end SEER 13 model.

To discuss how air conditioner ratings can help you select the right cooling system for your home, please contact us at Hansberger Refrigeration & and Electric Company.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Yuma, Arizona about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about air conditioner ratings and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 928-723-3183.

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “OpenClipart-Vectors/Pixabay”