Energy efficiency is more than just a buzzword; it’s an essential consideration for homeowners who are intent on saving money and who also want to support environmental sustainability. The release of new SEER 2 rating standards in 2023 marks a substantial shift in how we look at cooling efficiency. These changes affect new HVAC installations as well as scheduled AC maintenance and repairs. Explore the nuances 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 conventional metric used to calculate the cooling efficiency of air conditioning systems. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient the system and the less the operating expenses. SEER is calculated 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 done under precise test conditions to establish consistency.
SEER 2 is the next era of AC efficiency ratings. It uses adjusted testing practices to provide a more accurate representation of real-world performance. Because of this, you should anticipate that AC efficiency ratings with a “2” after them will be less than SEER ratings that do not have a "2", even though they assess the same performance.
SEER isn’t the only rating that’s changing in 2023. A corresponding cooling rating known as the energy efficiency ratio (EER) is also shifting to a new standard called EER 2. Additionally, heat pumps have a heating-related rating that evaluates winter heating efficiency. It’s named heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF), which is also changing to HSPF 2 based on new, more exacting testing criteria.
New SEER Rating Standards for 2023
These changes might make you wonder—what are the new SEER rating standards for 2023? The Department of Energy (DOE) has established differing requirements for the Northern and Southern United States. Needless to say, the South has stricter requirements because this region has to depend more heavily on air conditioning. Here’s what consumers need to know when shopping for 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 accurate measurements provided by SEER 2-rated units empower homeowners to make good decisions about new HVAC installations, possibly leading to diminished energy bills over the system’s life span.
Energy-efficient systems with a high SEER 2 rating use 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 recognizing the equivalences between SEER and SEER 2 can help homeowners abide by the latest regulations. Please remember, HVAC companies are responsible for installing equipment that satisfies new testing requirements.
In the North, pre-SEER 2 air conditioners can still be installed in 2023, just as long as they were manufactured before January 1. Having said that, in the South, only SEER 2-compliant air conditioning systems can be installed after January 1. If an installer violates these regulations and is penalized by the DOE, they are required to replace the non-compliant AC unit with no cost to the homeowner.
SEER 2 and New HVAC Installations
If you’re looking to purchase a new AC in 2023, you may see SEER or SEER 2 ratings depicted on the tag. Either rating may be considered compliant, if it fulfills the regional minimum.
But, it’s imperative to note that the new SEER rating standards only apply to systems acquired and installed after January 1, 2023. Existing systems installed before this date don’t need to be replaced if they still work properly. This exception was created so homeowners aren’t burdened by unnecessary expenses but are still able to promote future investments in more energy-efficient options.
Embrace SEER 2 with Confidence with Midland Air Service Experts
Comprehending SEER 2 is about more than just grasping a new technical concept. Rather, it’s about aligning your residence with the ever-changing landscape of energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. SEER 2 brings a more accurate measurement to the table, influencing the way homeowners think about new HVAC installations.
Midland Air Service Experts is ahead of the curve when it comes to this emerging era of heating and cooling efficiency. Our dedication 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 doing SEER 2-compliant HVAC installations in Columbia, the team at Midland Air Service Experts is here to help.
Reach out to Midland Air Service Experts to find out how we can help you embrace the new SEER rating standards. Together, we’ll help you create a more energy-efficient home personalized to your needs and aligned with the future of air conditioning technology. Call 803-399-7208 today to schedule your appointment for AC service in Columbia.