When you start looking for a new AC unit, the seemingly endless range of makes and models can be overwhelming. Not to mention, the long list of specifications on each unit is enough to make even the savviest homeowner feel out of their league. While a quality AC installation company will guide you through the process, recommend units and help you decide which unit best fits your needs, there is one specification every potential AC buyer should understand: SEER ratings.
SEER, or Seasonal Energy Efficient Ratio, ratings are measures of energy efficiency. An AC unit’s SEER rating is a simple ratio of output to input. It compares the unit’s cooling capacity to the amount of energy it uses over a typical cooling season to determine how efficient it can be when working at its best.
What is a good SEER rating?
AC SEER ratings are shown in numbers, with higher numbers indicating higher efficiency. The Department of Energy (DOE) sets minimum efficiency standards for AC units throughout the country based on these ratings. The minimum SEER rating in moderate climates is 13, but in Georgia and other states with warmer climates, the minimum is 14 SEER. SEER ratings today range from 13 to 25, but most homeowners choose a unit rated at 14-16 SEER.
Why SEER Matters For You
You may be asking yourself why this simple rating is so important to think about while buying an air conditioner. SEER ratings measure energy efficiency, which means they give you a really good idea of how much money you’ll be spending, now and later. Because better technology and materials are required to achieve higher efficiency, you can expect to pay much more money for a 20 SEER unit than one rated at 14 SEER.
However, having a higher-efficiency AC means you’ll save more on monthly energy bills than with a lower-efficiency unit. When you compare the SEER ratings of different AC units, you’ll be able to compare energy savings and upfront costs to roughly weigh how much you’ll get out of your investment.
What SEER rating should I get?
In the end, you’ll see significant savings and higher efficiency regardless of what SEER rating you choose. This is because you’re replacing an old 8-10 SEER unit with one that is significantly more efficient, even if it’s a 14 SEER. However, you will see more savings over time the higher the SEER rating on your AC unit is.
A 16 SEER unit is simply more energy-efficient than a 14 SEER unit. It all depends on how much you’re able and willing to invest in your new AC system. For some, there’s no price limit when it comes to energy efficiency. Others simply need to cool their home for an affordable price — the choice is ultimately yours.
If you’re looking for a new AC installation, the experts at Absolute Comfort Air are here to help you find the perfect air conditioner to meet your needs and budget. Contact us today for more information or to begin the installation process.