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What Are SEER2 Ratings for Air Conditioners?

When you’re shopping around for a new air conditioner, you may read about SEER2 ratings. This is a standard way to measure HVAC efficiency. It’s an elevated grading system that takes more factors into consideration compared to the former SEER rating system.

Getting a central AC installation in Fresno is a big task. You want to make sure that you choose the right system for your home and family. Selecting an air conditioner with a higher SEER2 rating means that you’ll get better energy efficiency over the life of the system. You can keep reading to learn more about the minimum SEER2 ratings for our area and why you want to select a unit with a stronger rating.

Understanding SEER2 Ratings

The HVAC industry used to have a standard SEER rating for HVAC efficiency. It was a way to measure how much energy an HVAC system has to use for cooling at home. However, this rating did not align with real-world scenarios as much as it could have. In January 2023, a new standard was released, SEER2. This rating system uses more testing conditions so that energy efficiency more closely aligns with how real homeowners use HVAC systems. 

For example, it takes into account the attached ductwork on a central air conditioner or heat pump. The idea is that you have a more accurate estimate of how much energy your system will use so you can make an educated decision about which air conditioner or heat pump you want to install in your home. After all, it is a very long-term investment and so you want to make the right selection.

SEER2 in California

As part of the move from a SEER rating to a SEER2 rating, California standards moved from a minimum rating of 15 to a minimum rating of 14.3. This means that a central air conditioner needs to meet a minimum efficiency rating of 14.3 to even be considered for residential installation.

The higher the rating, the better, the efficiency. So really, 14.3 is the absolute minimum for our area. When you spend a little more for a higher-rated HVAC system, say one that’s rated at an 18 instead, you’re investing in more efficiency. 

Benefits of High Efficiency

Sure, you may end up spending more now on the installation for a unit with greater energy efficiency, but you’ll save more over the life of the unit. And when you consider that your AC will last for an average of 10-15 years, that’s a lot of power bills that have the potential to be lower and cost you less for operation. The savings can add up quickly. 

An efficient air conditioner is also going to last longer. Since it requires less energy for operation, it takes less wear and tear to cool your home. Greater energy efficiency means that the unit doesn’t have to work as hard to produce results. As long as you keep up with annual maintenance, your high-efficiency air conditioner should last for as long as the average lifespan of 10-15 years.

Where comfort and technology come together. Schedule an appointment today for AC installation with the team at California Indoor Comfort.

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