What Should My Air Conditioners SEER Rating Be?

August 20, 2020

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

SEER means Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. In a nutshell, it gauges how efficient your air conditioner is at turning electricity into chilled air. A greater number means your air conditioner is more efficient, which is great for your electric bill.

However, there are many different models available for air conditioners. And a higher SEER rating typically involves a bigger price tag. So, how can you determine which one is right for your house?

At Lanz Furnace and Fireplace, we give you a free, no-pressure home comfort analysis. You can schedule one by contacting us at 608-291-3606. Our experienced air conditioner installers will work with you to help you find the right air conditioner for your family. Plus, they’ll also provide you with a free, no-obligation estimate.

In the meantime, let’s review SEER ratings and how it can impact your loved ones’ comfort. And your energy bills.

How Does SEER Rating Affect My Air Conditioner?

In 2016, the federal government developed new SEER criteria. New air conditioners are required to be at least 13 SEER in the northern United States and 14 SEER in the southeast and southwest. If you’re unsure when you had your air conditioner installed or what its SEER ranking is, you can check the sticker on the unit outside your home. If you can’t locate the sticker, you can reach us at 608-291-3606 for support.

If your air conditioner was replaced prior to that time, it’s likely much less efficient. Air conditioning technology has rapidly changed in the past couple of years, with huge progress in energy efficiency and smart home capacity. Connecting your new air conditioner with a smart thermostat could help you conserve more on electrical expenses, since the thermostat can automatically manage your temperature settings when you’re away.

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

Is the Higher the SEER the Better?

An air conditioner with a higher SEER rating will be more efficient at consuming electricity for cooling. The most efficient systems, which can go as great as 26 SEER, have ENERGY STAR® certification. This designation means the air conditioner matches EPA requirements for energy savings and environmental conservation.

While ENERGY STAR air conditioners are typically more expensive, you’ll usually get the difference returned over the years through reduced utility expenses. These air conditioners, which are generally rated 16 SEER and greater, consume about 8% less power than other new systems, according to ENERGY STAR.

One of the greatest differences between a 14 SEER and 16 SEER is variable-speed capacity. A variable-speed air conditioner can operate at varying speeds. This improves comfort for your family while keeping your power expenses low. It can also keep temperatures and humidity more consistent, since it can go for longer without requiring a lot more power.

When adding a variable-speed air conditioner, you’ll have to ensure that your furnace or air handler is compatible. This is since your air conditioner relies on this system’s blower to disperse chilled air around your house. Furnaces only run for approximately 20 years, so if yours is getting old, we advise getting furnace installation at the same time so you can enjoy all the perks of your variable-speed air conditioner.

When you’re ready to replace your air conditioner, the cooling pros at Lanz Furnace and Fireplace are here to help. Give us a call at 608-291-3606 to schedule your free home comfort analysis now.