Energy efficiency is more than just a buzzword; it’s an important consideration for homeowners who want to save money and who also want to promote environmental sustainability. The introduction of new SEER 2 rating standards in 2023 marks a big shift in how we think about cooling efficiency. The release of these new ratings affects new HVAC installations as well as scheduled AC maintenance and repairs. Discover the intricacies of these changes and why they matter to you.
The Basics of SEER and SEER 2
SEER, short for seasonal energy efficiency ratio, is the standard metric used to assess the cooling efficiency of air conditioning models. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient the system and the lower the operating costs. SEER is determined by dividing the cooling output during a regular cooling season—measured in British thermal units, or BTUs—by the energy consumed in the process as measured in watt-hours. These statistics are created under special test conditions to establish consistency.
SEER 2 is the next wave of AC efficiency ratings. It applies adjusted testing practices to provide a more accurate representation of real-world performance. Consequently, you can expect that AC efficiency ratings with a “2” after them will be lower, even though they reflect the same performance.
SEER isn’t the only rating that’s changing in 2023. A comparable cooling rating called the energy efficiency ratio (EER) is also changing to a new standard called EER 2. Additionally, heat pumps have a heating-related rating for cold weather heating efficiency. It’s called heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF), which is also changing to HSPF 2 based on new, more rigorous testing requirements.
New SEER Rating Standards for 2023
These changes might make you want to know—what are the new SEER rating standards for 2023? The Department of Energy (DOE) has created different minimums for the Northern and Southern United States. Not surprisingly, the South has more stringent requirements because this region has to depend more heavily on air conditioning. Here’s what consumers need to know when buying a new AC or heat pump:
- The 2023 minimum rating for air conditioners in Northern states is 14 SEER, which translates to 13.4 SEER 2.
- The 2023 minimum rating for air conditioners in Southern states is 15 SEER, which is equivalent to 14.3 SEER 2.
- The 2023 minimum EER rating only applies to air conditioners installed in Southwestern states. It’s 12.2 EER, which is the same as 11.7 EER 2.
- The 2023 minimum ratings for heat pumps apply nationwide. They are 15 SEER (14.3 SEER 2) and 8.8 HSPF (7.5 HSPF 2).
Why SEER 2 Matters for Homeowners
The transition to SEER 2, EER 2 and HSPF 2 is crucial for a number of reasons.
The more exact measurements provided by SEER 2-rated units allow homeowners to make educated decisions about new HVAC installations, potentially leading to diminished energy bills over the system’s life span.
Energy-efficient systems with a high SEER 2 rating take significantly less energy. This reduces your home’s carbon footprint, contributing positively to global environmental protection efforts.
Complying with the latest SEER rating standards and learning about the equivalences between SEER and SEER 2 can help homeowners abide by the latest regulations. Be aware, HVAC companies are responsible for installing equipment that satisfies new testing guidelines.
In the North, pre-SEER 2 air conditioning systems can still be installed in 2023, just as long as they were manufactured before January 1. However, in the South, only SEER 2-compliant air conditioners can be installed after January 1. If an installer violates these regulations and is penalized by the DOE, they must replace the non-compliant AC unit free of cost to the homeowner.
SEER 2 and New HVAC Installations
If you’re shopping for a new air conditioning system in 2023, you may see SEER or SEER 2 ratings shown on the tag. Either rating may be regarded as compliant, so long as it satisfies the regional minimum.
But, it’s very important to note that the new SEER rating standards only relate to systems purchased and installed after January 1, 2023. Any HVAC systems installed earlier than this date don’t need to be replaced if they still perform properly. This exception was created so homeowners aren’t strained by unnecessary expenses but are still able to support future investments in more energy-efficient options.
Embrace SEER 2 with Confidence with Stevenson Service Experts
Understanding SEER 2 is about more than just grasping a new technical concept. Rather, it’s about aligning your home with the ever-changing landscape of energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. SEER 2 brings a more precise measurement to the table, impacting the way homeowners plan new HVAC installations.
Stevenson Service Experts is ahead of the curve when it comes to this emerging era of home comfort efficiency. Our commitment to excellence, professionalism and budget-friendly financing sets us apart. We even guarantee your 100% satisfaction, so you can plan your HVAC purchases and repairs with confidence. From educating homeowners about the new SEER rating standards to offering SEER 2-compliant HVAC installations in Columbus, the team at Stevenson Service Experts is here for you.
Contact Stevenson Service Experts to find out how we can help you adapt to the new SEER rating standards. Together, we’ll help you create a more energy-efficient home tailored to your needs and aligned with the future of HVAC technology. Call 614-334-3192 today to set up your appointment for work on your AC in Columbus.