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 who are intent on saving money and who also want to help improve environmental sustainability. The introduction of new SEER 2 rating standards in 2023 marks a substantial shift in how we look at cooling efficiency. These changes affect new HVAC installations as well as scheduled AC maintenance and repairs. Discover the nuances of these changes and what impact they could have on you.
The Basics of SEER and SEER 2
SEER, short for seasonal energy efficiency ratio, is the conventional metric utilized 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 normal cooling season—measured in British thermal units, or BTUs—by the energy consumed in the process as measured in watt-hours. These computations are generated under special test conditions to establish consistency.
SEER 2 is the next generation of AC efficiency ratings. It uses adjusted testing practices 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 evaluate 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 moving to a new standard called EER 2. Additionally, heat pumps have a heating-related rating that evaluates winter operation. It’s referred to as heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF), which is also changing to HSPF 2 based on new, more stringent testing standards.
New SEER Rating Standards for 2023
These changes probably will make you want to know—what are the new SEER rating standards for 2023? The Department of Energy (DOE) has created specific standards for the Northern and Southern United States. Not surprisingly, the South has tighter requirements because this region has to depend more heavily on AC units. Here’s what you should know when searching for a new AC 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 change to SEER 2, EER 2 and HSPF 2 is important for a number of reasons.
The more exact measurements provided by SEER 2-rated units allow homeowners to make informed decisions about new HVAC installations, likely leading to diminished energy bills over the system’s life span.
Energy-efficient systems with a high SEER 2 rating use significantly less energy. This decreases a building's carbon footprint, contributing positively to global environmental protection efforts.
Complying with the newly released SEER rating standards and understanding the equivalences between SEER and SEER 2 can help homeowners abide by the latest regulations. Please remember, HVAC companies are responsible for installing equipment that satisfies new testing guidelines.
In the North, pre-SEER 2 air conditioners can still be installed in 2023, as long as they were made before January 1. But, in the South, only SEER 2-compliant air conditioners can be installed after January 1. If an installer ignores these regulations and is penalized by the DOE, they have to replace the non-compliant AC unit at no cost to the homeowner.
SEER 2 and New HVAC Installations
If you’re looking to purchase a new air conditioner in 2023, you might see SEER or SEER 2 ratings shown on the tag. Either rating may be regarded as compliant, so long as it satisfies the regional minimum.
But, it’s vital to note that the new SEER rating standards only pertain to systems purchased and installed after January 1, 2023. Any HVAC systems installed earlier than this date don’t need to be replaced if they still perform properly. This exception ensures homeowners aren’t strained by unnecessary expenses but are still able to support future investments in more energy-efficient options.
Embrace SEER 2 with Confidence with Midway Services
Understanding SEER 2 is about more than just learning a new technical concept. Actually, it’s about aligning your property with the evolving landscape of energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. SEER 2 brings a more accurate measurement to the table, influencing the way homeowners think about new HVAC installations.
Midway Services is ahead of the curve when it comes to this new era of home comfort efficiency. Our devotion to excellence, professionalism and budget-friendly financing sets us apart. We even guarantee your 100% satisfaction, so you can move forward with confidence. From educating homeowners about the new SEER rating standards to providing SEER 2-compliant HVAC installations in Clearwater, the team at Midway Services is here to help.
Contact Midway Services to discover how we can help you adapt to the new SEER rating standards. Together, we’ll help you set up a more energy-efficient home customized to your needs and aligned with the future of HVAC technology. Call 727-219-2471 today to schedule your appointment for work on your AC in Clearwater.