If you’re thinking about air conditioner installation in The Bay Area, you should also be looking at your new air conditioner’s SEER rating.
SEER is short for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. In summary, it looks at how productive your air conditioner is at transforming electricity into cooled air. A bigger number means your air conditioner is more efficient, which is great for your electric expenses.
However, there are many differing models out there for air conditioners. And a greater SEER rating typically is accompanied by a bigger price tag. So, how can you find out which one is right for your residence?
At Contra Costa Heating & AC, we provide a free, no-pressure home comfort analysis. You can book one by contacting us at 510-343-9841. Our knowledgeable air conditioner installers will work with you to help you choose the right air conditioner for your budget. Plus, they’ll also provide you with a free, no-obligation estimate.
In the meantime, let’s go over SEER ratings and how they can influence your family’s comfort. And your electrical bills.
Does SEER Rating Really Matter?
In 2016, the federal government developed new SEER rules. New air conditioners are mandated at minimum 13 SEER in the northernmost United States and 14 SEER in the southeast and southwest. If you’re not sure when you had your air conditioner replaced or what its SEER rating is, you can look at the sticker on the unit outside your residence. If you can’t see the sticker, you can give us a call at 510-343-9841 for help.
If your air conditioner was put in in advance of that year, it’s likely much less efficient. Cooling technology has rapidly changed in the past few years, with big developments in energy efficiency and smart home compatibility. Connecting your new air conditioner with a smart thermostat could help you spend less on air conditioning bills, because the thermostat can seamlessly adjust your temperature settings when you’re out.
If your existing air conditioner has a SEER rating between 8 and 10, getting a 14-SEER system could save you close to 30–50% on annual utility bills. Your savings relate to your air conditioner size and your temperature settings.
Is the Higher the SEER the Better?
An air conditioner with a better SEER rating will be more efficient at consuming electricity for cooling. The highest efficiency models, which can go as high as 26 SEER, have ENERGY STAR® designation. This endorsement signifies the air conditioner has achieved EPA requirements for energy savings and environmental conservation.
While ENERGY STAR air conditioners are frequently more costly, you’ll normally get the difference returned throughout the years through reduced air conditioning costs. These air conditioners, which are usually rated 16 SEER and greater, need about 8% less electricity than other new systems, according to ENERGY STAR.
One of the greatest differences between a 14 SEER and 16 SEER is variable-speed technology. A variable-speed air conditioner can cool at different speeds. This fine-tunes comfort for your residence while keeping your energy bills reduced. It can also keep temperatures and humidity more consistent, since it can operate for longer without consuming a lot more electricity.
When adding a variable-speed air conditioner, you’ll have to ensure that your furnace or air handler is compatible. This is due to the fact your air conditioner relies on this unit’s blower to disperse cold air throughout your residence. Furnaces only work for about 20 years, so if yours is getting old, we suggest getting furnace installation at the same time so you can get all the perks of your variable-speed air conditioner.
When you’re prepared to replace your air conditioner, the cooling specialists at Contra Costa Heating & AC are here to help. Call us at 510-343-9841 to book your free home comfort analysis right away.