Buying an HVAC system in Kyle, TX, can often be a confusing experience, one reason being that comparing your options requires an understanding of the various HVAC rating systems. Here’s a brief guide to SEER, HSPF, and AFUE ratings and what they mean to consumers.
Known as the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, the SEER rating is an estimate of an AC unit’s efficiency during an average cooling season. The more efficient an AC is, the higher its SEER rating. Most air conditioners today have SEER ratings between 13 and 21.
Some central air conditioners bear an Energy Star seal. To qualify for the program, an air conditioner must have a SEER rating of at least 15. Every time you see the Energy Star logo on an air conditioner, it means the system meets or exceeds that efficiency standard.
HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor) ratings pertain to the heating efficiency of heat pumps during cold weather. Like SEER ratings, HSPF is an estimate of a heat pump’s heating efficiency over an average heating season. An HSPF rating uses the same formula as a SEER rating, and a higher number means a more efficient heat pump.
Most heat pumps have an HSPF rating between 8.2 and 13. New heat pumps with an 8.2 HSPF rating meet the current minimum efficiency standard set by the Department of Energy. That minimum standard, however, will increase to 8.8 as of January 2023.
The Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) rating measures the efficiency of furnaces. It represents the percentage of fuel a given furnace converts into usable heat each year. Some of today’s most efficient furnaces have AFUE ratings as high as 98%.
Knowing how to interpret the ratings you’ll find on HVAC systems helps you become a more well-equipped shopper. Contact Legacy Heating & Air Conditioning if your home needs a new HVAC unit or emergency repair.