Understanding the New SEER 2 Rating and Why It Matters

Energy efficiency is more than just a buzzword; it’s an important consideration for homeowners keen on saving money and who also want to promote environmental sustainability. The introduction of new SEER 2 rating standards in 2023 marks a big shift in how we think about cooling efficiency. The release of these new ratings affects new HVAC installations as well as routine AC maintenance and repairs. Explore 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 calculate the cooling efficiency of air conditioning systems. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient the system and the cheaper the operating charges.

SEER is computed by dividing the cooling output during a typical cooling season—measured in British thermal units, or BTUs—by the energy consumed in the process as measured in watt-hours. These statistics are generated under special test conditions to establish consistency.

SEER 2 is the next era of AC efficiency ratings. It applies amended testing processes to provide a more accurate representation of real-world performance. Consequently, you should be prepared to see that AC efficiency ratings with a “2” after them will be less than SEER ratings that do not have a “2”, even though they reflect the same performance.

SEER isn’t the only rating that’s changing in 2023. A comparable cooling rating referred to as the energy efficiency ratio (EER) is also shifting to a new standard called EER 2. Also, heat pumps have a heating-related rating that applies to cold weather heating efficiency. It’s referred to as heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF), which is also changing to HSPF 2 based on new, more rigorous testing standards.

New SEER Rating Standards for 2023

These changes could make you want to know—what are the new SEER rating standards for 2023? The Department of Energy (DOE) has set differing requirements for the Northern and Southern United States. Not surprisingly, the South has tighter requirements because this region relies more heavily on cooling systems. Here’s what to know when buying a new air conditioner 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 switch to SEER 2, EER 2 and HSPF 2 is essential for a number of reasons.

Cost Savings

The more accurate measurements provided by SEER 2-rated units empower homeowners to make informed decisions about new HVAC installations, likely leading to reduced energy bills over the system’s life span.

Environmental Impact

Energy-efficient systems with a high SEER 2 rating use significantly less energy. This reduces your property’s carbon footprint, contributing positively to global environmental protection efforts.

Regulatory Compliance

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. Of course, HVAC companies are responsible for installing equipment that fulfills new testing requirements.

In the North, pre-SEER 2 air conditioners can still be installed in 2023, as long as they were produced before January 1. But, in the South, only SEER 2-compliant air conditioning systems can be installed after January 1. If an installer breaches these regulations and is penalized by the DOE, they have to replace the non-compliant AC unit free of cost to the homeowner.

SEER 2 and New HVAC Installations

If you’re shopping for a new ACair conditioning system} in 2023, you might see SEER or SEER 2 ratings indicated on the tag. Either rating may be regarded as compliant, if it fulfills the regional minimum.

But, it’s vital to note that the new SEER rating standards only relate to systems purchased and installed after January 1, 2023. Any HVAC systems installed prior to this date don’t need to be replaced if they still function properly. This exception ensures homeowners aren’t weighed down by unnecessary expenses but are still able to support future investments in more energy-efficient options.

Embrace SEER 2 with Confidence with Norrell Service Experts

Appreciating SEER 2 is about more than just learning a new technical concept. Actually, it’s about aligning your property with the changing landscape of energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. SEER 2 brings a more exact measurement to the table, impacting the way homeowners tackle new HVAC installations.

Norrell Service Experts is ahead of the curve when it comes to this new period of home comfort efficiency. Our dedication to excellence, professionalism and wallet-friendly financing sets us apart. We even guarantee your 100% satisfaction, so you can proceed with confidence. From teaching homeowners about the new SEER rating standards to offering SEER 2-compliant HVAC installations in Birmingham, the team at Norrell Service Experts is here to help.

Get in touch with Norrell Service Experts to discover how we can help you embrace the new SEER rating standards. Together, we’ll help you develop a more energy-efficient home personalized to your needs and aligned with the future of HVAC technology. Call 205-267-0023 today to set up your appointment for AC service in Birmingham.

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