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There’s a new set of standards for heating, air conditioning and ventilation (HVAC) systems starting in 2015. Starting January 1, 2015, there are new standards for air conditioners and heat pump systems. What does that mean for you? In the long run, it means homeowners will help maximize the heating and cooling power of new HVAC systems, which can lead to lower utility costs.
Below, we answer your burning questions.
Q. What’s SEER?
A. SEER, the seasonal energy efficiency ratio, is a set of standards developed by the Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI). A unit’s SEER rating is the cooling output during a typical season divided by the total electric energy input over the same period. To keep things simple, the higher a unit’s SEER rating is, the more energy-efficient it is.
Q. Will the changes affect everyone in the U.S.?
A. In the past, efficiency standards applied to all areas of the country. The new standards do have some regional differences, though. For example, split-system central air conditioners will remain at a 13-SEER minimum efficiency rating for homeowners in the North, while those in the South and Southwest will have to meet a higher, 14-SEER minimum. Packaged air conditioners in the Southwest, for example, must meet a minimum 11-SEER rating.
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