SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. A seer rating the measurement used to define the energy-efficiency level of an HVAC unit. The higher the number is, the more efficient the unit is. Ratings range from 9 up to 25.
Minimal SEER Requirements
The United States government has set down minimal SEER rating requirements in an effort to promote energy efficiency and reduce pollution. Residential HVAC systems manufactured after 2006 must have a minimum SEER rating of 13; however, window units are still permitted to have a minimum SEER 10 rating. Air conditioning units with an ENERGY STAR rating must have a SEER rating of at least 14.5. Requirements for split system central air conditioners vary depending on geographical location. In Kentucky, split system central AC units must have a minimal SEER 14 rating.
What are the Benefits of a High SEER Rating?
An AC unit’s SEER rating is likely to have an impact on how much it costs; however, there are benefits of shelling out extra money for a unit with a high SEER rating. Perhaps the biggest benefit is that upgrading to a new unit can help you drastically lower your energy bills. It has been estimated that switching from a unit with a SEER 9 rating to one with a SEER 13 rating can enable a homeowner to save up to $300 a year.
What is more, newer units remove unwanted humidity more efficiently than their older counterparts; this not only keeps the home temperature comfortable but also prevents harmful mold growth. Furthermore, upgrading your old HVAC unit will almost always boost your home’s market value as potential buyers will appreciate having an eco-friendly unit that is sure to run well for the foreseeable future.
At the same time, a unit’s SEER rating isn’t the only energy efficiency measurement homeowners should pay attention to. The size of the HVAC unit is very important, as a unit that is either too small or too large for the home will not just waste electricity but also fail to provide adequate cooling. Having the ductwork inspected when installing a new HVAC unit is imperative as leaky ducts are a commonplace flaw that drastically increases energy usage.
Investing in a new HVAC unit is worth it, especially if your new unit is made by a well-known brand name like Trane or Mitsubishi Electric, has a high SEER rating, and is installed by knowledgeable, experienced technicians.