Understanding HVAC Ratings before an Air Conditioner Replacement 04/30/2015 When you’re looking into an air conditioner replacement, you’ll find that the HVAC industry is full of acronyms and perplexing terms. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with a few of these acronyms and other typically used terms to be able to successfully research your purchase—particularly the terms that help interpret energy efficiency. Let’s go through some of these terms. What is EER? EER is an acronym for “energy-efficiency ratio.” It measures the energy efficiency of an air conditioner when the outside temperature is at or above a certain degree. You’ll want to go with the higher ratings on this one because the higher the EER rating is, the more energy efficient the model is. You could be seeing lower utility bills in no time. ENERGY STAR® Certification You’re most likely familiar with ENERGY STAR certification, but it’s sometimes not explained very well. ENERGY STAR was created in 1992 by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The objective was to protect the environment while helping consumers save money on energy by using more energy-efficient products. Products must endure rigorous third-party testing and meet the many requirements to become ENERGY STAR certified. So, when you see the blue ENERGY STAR label while you’re shopping for an air conditioner replacement, you can count on it saving you money. ENERGY STAR - Most Efficient The ENERGY STAR Most Efficient designation recognizes the products with the higest efficiency among those that are ENERGY STAR certified. These phenomenal products represent the leading edge in energy efficient products each year. SEER – Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) represents a measurement of your air conditioner’s or heat pump’s cooling efficiency. The major difference between SEER ratings and EER ratings is that SEER is a measurement of an air conditioner’s efficiency over throughout the entire cooling season, rather than its efficiency at a set temperature level. Like the EER ratings, higher the SEER ratings mean better energy efficiency. More energy efficiency equates to more money savings and a lower impact on the environment. If you have an older air conditioner, the SEER rating could be as low as 8, while current, more efficient models range from ratings of 13 – 23. You’ll certainly find more acronyms and unfamiliar jargon when you are researching your air conditioner replacement, but you’ll be more prepared by understanding these terms. If you have any questions about terminology you come across in your research or if you need advice about your air conditioner replacement, call Garoken Energy Co. Inc. in Beaverton at 503-848-3838 or set up an appointment online.