Understanding HVAC Ratings before an Air Conditioner Replacement 04/30/2015 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 become familiar with a number of these acronyms and other typically used terms to be able to successfully research your purchase—notably the terms that help interpret energy efficiency. Let’s learn 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 temperature outside is at or above a certain temperature. It’s best to go with the higher ratings on this one because the higher the EER rating is, the more energy efficient the model is. You could be saving money on energy in no time. ENERGY STAR® Certification You’ve probably heard of ENERGY STAR certification, but it’s not usually explained very well. ENERGY STAR was started in 1992 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It was designed to protect the environment while at the same time saving consumer’s money on energy by using more energy-efficient products. Products must undergo rigorous third-party testing and meet a specific number of requirements to become ENERGY STAR certified. So, when you see the blue ENERGY STAR label while you’re in the market for an air conditioner replacement, you’ll know it’ll save you money. ENERGY STAR - Most Efficient The ENERGY STAR Most Efficient designation recognizes the most efficient products 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 a measure of your air conditioner’s or heat pump’s cooling efficiency. The big difference between SEER ratings and EER ratings is that SEER is the degree of an air conditioner’s efficiency over throughout the entire cooling season, rather than its efficiency at a set temperature level. Like the EER ratings, higher the SEER ratings mean better energy efficiency. More energy efficiency equals more money savings and a lower 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 terms when you are in the market for your air conditioner replacement, but you’ll be a lot more informed by being aquainted with these terms. If you have any questions about terminology you come across in your research or if you need help with your air conditioner replacement, call Street Heating & Sheet Metal Inc in Rapid City at 605-342-5107 or set up an appointment online.