What SEER Rating Should My Air Conditioner Be?

August 20, 2020

If you’re thinking over air conditioner installation in Gresham, you should also be looking at your new air conditioner’s SEER rating.

SEER is short for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. Simply put, it looks at how productive your air conditioner is at transforming electricity into chilled air. A high number means your air conditioner is more efficient, which is excellent for your energy costs.

However, there are many varying options to choose from for air conditioners. And a greater SEER ranking typically involves a higher price. So, how can you find out which one is ideal for your house?

At Honke Heating & AC, we offer a free, no-pressure home comfort analysis. You can request one by contacting us at 503-663-8033. Our knowledgeable air conditioner installers will work with you to help you locate the right air conditioner for your needs. Plus, they’ll also provide you with a free, no-obligation estimate.

For the time being, let’s review SEER ratings and how it can affect your family’s comfort. And your electrical costs.

Does SEER Rating Really Matter?

In 2016, the federal government developed new SEER criteria. New air conditioners are mandated at least 13 SEER in the north United States and 14 SEER in the southeast and southwest. If you don’t know when you had your air conditioner put in or what its SEER number is, you can look at the sticker on the condenser outside your residence. If you can’t see the sticker, you can reach us at 503-663-8033 for support.

If your air conditioner was installed before that date, it’s presumably much less efficient. Cooling technology has quickly evolved in the past few years, with major advancements in energy efficiency and smart home compatibility. Using your new air conditioner with a smart thermostat could help you conserve more on AC costs, since the thermostat can automatically adjust your temperature settings when you’re away.

If your existing air conditioner has a SEER rating between 8 and 10, getting a 14-SEER system could save you an estimated 30–50% on annual electrical costs. Your savings relate to your air conditioner size and your temp settings.

Is It Wiser to Get a High SEER Rating?

An air conditioner with a greater SEER rating will be more efficient at using electricity for cooling. The highest efficiency models, which can go as great as 26 SEER, include ENERGY STAR® endorsement. This endorsement means the air conditioner matches EPA requirements for energy savings and environmental conservation.

While ENERGY STAR air conditioners are typically pricier, you’ll normally get the difference back over time through lower power expenses. These air conditioners, which are generally rated 16 SEER and greater, use about 8% less electricity than other new models, according to ENERGY STAR.

One of the biggest differences between a 14 SEER and 16 SEER is variable-speed capacity. A variable-speed air conditioner can run at a number of speeds. This refines comfort for your home while keeping your electrical bills down. It can also keep temperatures and humidity more consistent, since it can go for longer without requiring a lot more energy.

When adding a variable-speed air conditioner, you’ll have to make sure that your furnace or air handler is compatible. This is since your air conditioner relies on this equipment’s blower to send chilled air across your residence. Furnaces only run for about 20 years, so if yours is around that age, we recommend furnace installation at the same time so you can enjoy all the advantages of your variable-speed air conditioner.

When you’re prepared to replace your air conditioner, the cooling professionals at Honke Heating & AC are ready to support you. Call us at 503-663-8033 to set your free home comfort analysis right away.