Are you looking to purchase an air conditioning system? You should consider various key factors, such as the unit’s energy efficiency. According to EIA, about 235 kWh of the residential sector’s electrical energy was used for cooling in 2021 alone. Thus, energy efficiency is now more important than before. Energy Efficiency Ratio measures the air conditioner’s energy efficiency with the outdoor temperatures at 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, it is recommended that you consult your AC repair company, for they understand the developments in the air conditioning industry. Hence, they are best suited to address you on any changes happening. For instance, the Department of Energy released new guidelines on HVAC systems, heat pumps, and air conditioner energy efficiency that took effect on January 1st, 2023. Among the key changes in these guidelines is the introduction of new energy efficiency metrics, EER2.
The DOE updated the guidelines regarding air conditioner efficiency, introducing a new measure called EER2. These guidelines took effect on January 1st, 2023, and are based on new (M1) energy efficiency testing procedures. According to Energy Star, EER2 is the ratio of average space cooling delivered by a heat pump or air conditioner to the average rate of energy it uses in the process. EER2 is measured in Btu/Wh. A higher EER2 rating shows that your air conditioner has a higher energy efficiency, which is great. A unit with high energy efficiency can save you money on electricity bills and also is good for the environment. So, if you have an old system that you are looking to replace soon, consider replacing it with one compliant with the new guidelines and have an AC repair technician install it.
The DOE has set minimum EER2, SEER2, and HSPF2 standards that all new air conditioners, heat pumps, and HVAC system installations must meet. However, these minimum standards vary depending on the region and system capacity. Hence, determining the “good” EER2 poses a significant challenge that only your AC repair company can help with. Thus, consult your reliable AC repair technician before purchasing a unit and ask them about this new metric.
These metrics evaluate the energy efficiency of your air conditioner. However, they are concerned with two varying temperature conditions. To begin with, EER2 measures the energy efficiency of your air conditioning system at peak cooling temperatures of 95 degrees Fahrenheit. On the other hand, Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating or SEER measures your air conditioner’s energy efficiency across the entire cooling season. The temperatures could range from 65-104 degrees Fahrenheit during this period. To save more energy and money, you should hire an AC repair technician to install a unit that has an EER2 and SEER2.
SEER2 can be considered the average energy efficiency of your air conditioner, while EER2 is the specific data point being averaged. For this reason, most air conditioning appliance manufacturers include the SEER2 rating on the Energy Label Guide rather than EER2, as the latter reflects some specific conditions that might not apply to different homeowners. SEER2 is extensively applicable and often more meaningful than EER2 for many homeowners.
From January 1st, 2023, the least SEER2 rating for the single-packed and split system air conditioning units in the North should be above or equal to 13.4. In the southeast and southwest, the split air conditioning systems with a capacity lower than 45k Btu should have a minimum SEER2 of 14.3. On the other hand, split system AC units with a capacity of 45k Btu or greater should have a minimum SEER of 13.8. So, consult with your AC repair technician widely before purchasing a unit.
From the onset, understanding EER2 is critical for all homeowners. It helps them get a clear picture of the energy efficiency of their air conditioning unit. Hence, this is especially critical for all areas where humid and high temperatures are the norm. Since this ratio is calculated using a single temperature of 95 degrees Fahrenheit, it is typically more essential for Southern US homeowners. Hence, having an EER2 rating in mind would be best when talking to your AC repair technician.
Regarding summer days in the South, they commonly reach temperatures that equal or exceed 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Thus, understanding your air conditioner’s EER2 is essential in understanding how it will withstand the rigors of the summer heat. Those homes in the North do not encounter such high temperatures as often. Therefore, assessing how energy efficient your heat pump or air conditioner is at such a high temperature isn’t very useful if you live there. Remember, no matter how energy efficient your unit is, that could suffer a toll if you don’t accord it the required maintenance. Thus, have a reliable heating and AC repair technician come over for routine maintenance and inspection to ensure it operates efficiently.
Hiring an AC repair technician to install a heat pump or air conditioner with a very high SEER2 but really low EER2 means it is efficient in cool and mild conditions. However, such a unit will have poor efficiency when in the scorching heat. Knowing this is essential for homeowners in extreme temperature regions as it helps them choose a unit that best suits their lifestyle. The last thing a homeowner wants is to purchase a unit that cannot meet their cooling needs or make their home comfortable.
Are you looking to install a new air conditioner or replace an old, inefficient one? Consider installing one with a higher EER. If you need help choosing, Pitzer’s One Hour Air Conditioning & Heating of Mohave County can help. Contact us today to learn more about the DOE AC energy efficiency changes and for help choosing a unit and installing it. Call us now to enjoy a free consultation.
Check our previous blog on this topic here.