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Understanding SEER Ratings for AC Units

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Seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) ratings can help you determine the productivity of an air conditioning unit. These ratings can help you choose an efficient air conditioner that customizes the air quality of your home. If you need a new AC unit or AC repair, Heritage Heating & Cooling provides quality services and customer satisfaction. Here is an explanation of why SEER ratings make a difference in AC units:

What is a SEER Rating?

SEER is a measure of an air conditioner’s efficiency. It determines how well your air conditioner’s cooling output performs over the cool seasons. Higher ratings indicate a more efficient output, which means the unit has a better quality system. The SEER of every unit we sell and install at Heritage Heating & Cooling is also determined to provide consistency and accuracy.

How is SEER Calculated?

To determine the SEER of an AC unit, the total cooling output (measured in British Thermal Units or BTUs) during an average cooling season is divided by the electrical energy input (measured in watt-hours) during the same time period. 

What is Considered a High SEER?

SEER ratings can be separated into more specific categories, and opinions can vary on what is considered a “high” SEER rating, but these are some simple guidelines:

Low SEER: New air conditioners must have a SEER of 13 or higher in the United States. Upgrading to a unit with a higher rating can help you save energy.

Medium SEER: These AC units can provide decent energy savings without a significant increase in upfront cost. To qualify as an Energy Star AC unit, the SEER has to be at least 14. These ratings are generally considered ‘good’ SEER ratings.

High SEER: AC units with a high SEER are the most energy-efficient and cost-effective in the long term. The higher the number, the more energy-efficient the unit is. These systems have lower environmental impact and may be the most effective at cooling your home. Units with these benefits are typically more expensive upfront.

What SEER Rating Do I Need?

The climate in your area, your budget, the size of your home, and how long you plan to stay in your current home can help you determine the right SEER rating.

  • Budget: Units with a high SEER rating can save you expenses but often cost more upfront. If you are on a budget, selecting a mid-range SEER unit may be the best option.
  • Climate: If you live in a hot area year-round and regularly run your air conditioner, selecting a unit with a high SEER rating can maintain a cool atmosphere in your home effectively and increase energy savings. 
  • Home square footage: Choosing an air conditioner that will support the size of your home can help save energy and reduce bills. If you choose a unit that is too small, it may not be able to cool your home effectively. Air conditioners that are too large can waste energy.
  • Long-term plans: How long you plan to stay in your current home can also affect your decision. High SEER units can help reduce bills, but only over time. If you plan to leave your existing home soon, a unit with a high SEER rating may not be cost-effective long-term.

These factors can help you decide what SEER rating you should get for your home. The climate in your area, your home size, and your plans for the future should help you determine your budget. If you still don’t know what SEER to aim for, we can help you choose the best unit for your situation and home.

What are the Benefits of Choosing an AC With a High SEER Rating?

There are many benefits to choosing an AC unit with a high SEER rating:

  • Energy efficiency: Higher SEER ratings help determine that your unit is energy efficient. These systems are usually more cost-effective because they can lead to lower electricity bills.
  • Environmental impact: Lower energy consumption can help reduce your carbon footprint. 
  • Comfort: An efficient AC unit can cool your home effectively and maintain the set temperature more accurately. This can lead to temperature consistency and make your home comfortable. 
  • Regulatory compliance: Many locations have regulations requiring a minimum SEER rating for new AC installations. We only sell and install units that meet these requirements so you can remain compliant with local standards and codes.

Heritage Heating & Cooling Offers AC Repair and Installation

Whether you are looking for AC repair, tune-ups, or new unit installation, Heritage Heating & Cooling can help you. We are an independent American Standard Heating & Air Conditioning dealer that serves the southern Illinois region, with locations in Edwardsville and O’Fallon. We offer services 24/7. We have units with many different SEER ratings and can help you choose one that fits your needs and home best. Contact us today to learn more.

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