Understanding the New SEER 2 Rating and Why It Matters
Energy efficiency is more than just a buzzword; it’s a critical consideration for homeowners who are intent on saving money and who also want to support environmental sustainability. The launch of new SEER 2 rating standards in 2023 marks a substantial shift in how we look at cooling efficiency. The release of these new ratings affects new HVAC installations as well as scheduled AC maintenance and repairs. Let’s learn more about the intricacies of these changes and how they apply to you.
The Basics of SEER and SEER 2
SEER, short for seasonal energy efficiency ratio, is the traditional metric used to evaluate the cooling efficiency of air conditioning systems. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient the system and the less the operating charges. SEER is calculated by dividing the cooling output during a normal cooling season—measured in British thermal units, or BTUs—by the energy consumed in the process as measured in watt-hours. These calculations are generated under specific test conditions to ensure consistency.
SEER 2 is the next generation of AC efficiency ratings. It uses modified testing methods to provide a more accurate representation of real-world performance. Because of this, you should be prepared to see that AC efficiency ratings with a “2” after them will be lower, even though they reflect the same performance.
SEER isn’t the only rating that’s changing in 2023. A comparable cooling rating known as the energy efficiency ratio (EER) is also changing to a new standard called EER 2. Additionally, heat pumps have a heating-related rating that applies to winter heating efficiency. It’s called 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 ask—what are the new SEER rating standards for 2023? The Department of Energy (DOE) has created specific standards for the Northern and Southern United States. Not surprisingly, the South has more stringent requirements because this region relies more heavily on cooling systems. Here’s what 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 change to SEER 2, EER 2 and HSPF 2 is important for many reasons.
The more exact measurements provided by SEER 2-rated units empower homeowners to make informed decisions about new HVAC installations, likely leading to diminished energy bills over the system’s life span.
Energy-efficient systems with a high SEER 2 rating consume lower energy. This decreases a building's carbon footprint, contributing positively to global environmental protection efforts.
Complying with the newly released SEER rating standards and knowing 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 fulfills new testing guidelines.
In the North, pre-SEER 2 ACs can still be installed in 2023, so long as they were produced before January 1. But, in the South, only SEER 2-compliant air conditioners can be installed after January 1. If an installer ignores these regulations and is penalized by the DOE, they have to replace the non-compliant AC unit with no cost to the homeowner.
SEER 2 and New HVAC Installations
If you’re thinking about buying a new AC in 2023, you might see SEER or SEER 2 ratings depicted on the tag. Either rating may be deemed compliant, as long as it meets the regional minimum.
But bear in mind, it’s imperative to note that the new SEER rating standards only relate to systems purchased and installed after January 1, 2023. Existing systems installed before this date don’t need to be replaced if they still perform properly. This exception was created so homeowners aren’t weighed down by extra expenses but are still able to promote future investments in more energy-efficient options.
Embrace SEER 2 with Confidence with Wesley Wood Service Experts
Appreciating SEER 2 is about more than just grasping a new technical concept. Rather, it’s about aligning your home with the ever-changing landscape of energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. SEER 2 brings a more accurate measurement to the table, affecting the way homeowners approach new HVAC installations.
Wesley Wood Service Experts is ahead of the curve when it concerns this latest era of home comfort efficiency. Our commitment to excellence, professionalism and wallet-friendly financing sets us apart. We even guarantee your 100% satisfaction, so you can proceed with confidence. From instructing homeowners about the new SEER rating standards to doing SEER 2-compliant HVAC installations in West Chester, the team at Wesley Wood Service Experts is here to make your decisions easier.
Reach out to Wesley Wood Service Experts to learn how we can help you adopt 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 484-401-7577 today to schedule your appointment for AC service in West Chester.