SEER Ratings: What Do They Mean?

When you start to do research about air conditioners, you’ll likely notice the term “SEER Rating.” You may be wondering what it means and why it’s so important.

What SEER Stands For

The term stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. It’s determined by dividing an AC’s cooling output by the energy it consumes. The period of time factored in is a typical cooling season.

Since SEER is a ratio of output to input, a higher SEER translates to being more energy-efficient. When manufacturers put a SEER rating on an AC, they’re showing the maximum rating possible. Note that the true SEER is variable, depending on your usage. If you ever have questions, the team at Air Max HVAC is here to help.

What to Look For

Here in California, the minimum SEER is 14. Minimum ratings are set by each state, and they’re usually either 13 or 14. However, a unit’s rating could go up to 21 or 22, or even higher in limited situations.

If you’re thinking about installing a new AC, consider how efficient you’d like your unit to be. Typically, more efficient units are more expensive, but if you plan on living in your Burbank home for a long time, you’ll see returns each month in the form of lower energy bills. Over the long run, these savings could be significant. It could also make your home more attractive to buyers if you plan on moving.

Air conditioners with very high SEER ratings achieve that efficiency by having a two-stage system. When cooling needs are minimal, they can operate at low speeds. They’ll only kick into high gear when things are very hot.

When you’re buying a new unit, whether it has a SEER rating of 14 or 20, it will likely be a significant improvement over what you currently have. Older models typically have a rating of 8 or 9.

Your Resource

At Air Max HVAC, we work with heating, cooling, and indoor air quality systems. We can put in a new unit for you or help you get the most out of your old system. Give us a call for assistance. We have offices in Burbank, Beverly Hills, and Thousand Oaks.

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