If you’re considering making an equipment upgrade, one of the most important factors you should consider is efficiency. However, equipment is rated differently depending on what it does. It’s essential to avoid comparing apples to oranges, so here’s a look at how efficiency is defined among some of the most popular types of HVAC equipment and the efficiency ratings you should look for.
Central A/C units are given one of two efficiency ratings. The first you might see is EER, or energy efficiency ratio. This is the measure of how efficient an air conditioner is when the weather is at its most extreme in the summer. The second is SEER, or seasonal energy efficiency ratio. This indicates how efficient the cooling system is over the duration of the cooling season. Look for 14 SEER and 11 EER to if you want equipment that qualifies for Energy Star status.
Furnaces And Boilers
These pieces of heating equipment are given AFUE ratings, which stands for annual fuel utilization efficiency. This is a percentage indicating how much heat energy is produced compared to how much energy is consumed in the process. For example, if a furnace or boiler converts 90 percent of the fuel into useable heat, it has an efficiency rating of 90 AFUE. To qualify for the Energy Star label, boilers must be at least 85 AFUE. Furnaces in the southern U.S. must be 90 AFUE, and northern homes, such as those in Michigan, must have a 95 AFUE rating to qualify.
Air-Source And Geothermal Heat Pumps
Heat pumps have incredible energy efficiency ratings. Since they have both heating and cooling capabilities, they are given two efficiency ratings. The first is SEER, which has already been discussed. The second is HSPF, or heating season performance factor. This is the total amount of heat produced divided by the electricity consumed. The best heat pumps have efficiency ratings of 14 to 18 SEER and 8 to 10 HSPF.
For more information about these and other efficiency ratings, please contact Team Bob’s Heating Cooling Plumbing for your Grand Traverse County home today.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about energy efficiency and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.