It’s no secret that running an old air conditioner system can mean paying more each month on your home’s energy bill. Updating or replacing an old AC or cooling system to a new high efficiency model can save homeowners a considerable amount of money month to month.
As a homeowner, it’s important to be aware of air conditioner efficiency standards when choosing a new AC unit. So, what is considered a high efficiency air conditioner? An air conditioner with a SEER rating of over 13 is generally regarded as high efficiency, but this depends on the size of the space you’re cooling and your own personal cooling preferences.
Here’s a closer look at how to calculate the efficiency of an air conditioner and how to choose the right one for your home:
How to Calculate the Efficiency of an Air Conditioner
When you’re shopping for a new air conditioner or trying to determine the efficiency of the one you already own, it may seem like you’d just determine many watts of electricity it’s using. But this is not the most effective way to calculate energy efficiency.
The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER, is a rating system that measures the maximum efficiency of an air conditioner. To calculate a unit's SEER rating, the cooling output of a typical summer season is divided by the total electricity used in that same period. Since this is a complicated thing to figure out, manufacturers provide this information for us. Every AC unit receives a SEER rating and the higher the rating, the more energy efficient it is.
The SEER rating of your air conditioning unit can be found on the outside of the unit (usually on a yellow sticker). While SEER rankings go up to 25, most air conditioning units sold today have a SEER rating between 13 and 21.
Other Air Conditioner Efficiency Factors to Consider
It’s important to remember that the SEER rating of your air conditioner measures its maximum efficiency. Other factors, however, go into the amount of energy your AC will use. A record-breaking heat wave, for example, will cause your AC to consume much more energy than an average summer day, due to the amount of time it will need to keep running to maintain your home at your chosen temp.
If you have a large house, your AC will be working harder to keep it at the optimum temp than if you have a smaller home, so talk to an HVAC expert about what SEER rating is best for your home’s needs and what would be most efficient from an energy-use perspective.
Still Not Sure About Installing a High Efficiency Air Conditioner?
With all the different models of air conditioners available today, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when choosing the right one for you. If you’re still not sure what SEER rating to look for your home, breathe easy with assistance from Aire Serv HVAC experts.
Looking for other ways to reduce your home energy consumption? Consider swapping standard light bulbs for LEDs. Learn more about ditching standard lightbulbs with these tips from Mr. Electric: Go Green and Save Money with LED Lighting. Like Aire Serv, Mr. Electric is a part of the Neighborly® community of home services brands.