Understanding the New SEER 2 Rating and Why It Matters

Energy efficiency is more than just a buzzword; it’s a critical consideration for homeowners who are intent on saving money and who also want to support environmental sustainability. The introduction of new SEER 2 rating standards in 2023 marks a substantial shift in how we look at cooling efficiency. The release of these new ratings affects new HVAC installations as well as regular AC maintenance and repairs. Lets learn more about the nuances of these changes and why they matter to you.

The Basics of SEER and SEER 2

SEER, short for seasonal energy efficiency ratio, is the traditional metric utilized to assess the cooling efficiency of air conditioning systems. The higher the SEER rating, the more energy efficient the system and the less the operating expenses.

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 calculations are done under precise test conditions to guarantee consistency.

SEER 2 is the next wave of AC efficiency ratings. It utilizes amended testing practices to provide a more accurate representation of real-world performance. Because of this, you can expect 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 similar cooling rating known as the energy efficiency ratio (EER) is also changing to a new standard called EER 2. And, heat pumps have a heating-related rating for cold weather operation. It’s referred to as heating seasonal performance factor (HSPF), which is also changing to HSPF 2 based on new, more rigorous testing criteria.

New SEER Rating Standards for 2023

These kinds of changes could make you wonder—what are the new SEER rating standards for 2023? The Department of Energy (DOE) has established different standards for the Northern and Southern United States. Needless to say, the South has tighter requirements because this region depends more heavily on air conditioning. Here’s what you should know when shopping for a new air conditioning system 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 shift to SEER 2, EER 2 and HSPF 2 is vital for many reasons.

Cost Savings

The more exact measurements provided by SEER 2-rated units enable homeowners to make educated decisions about new HVAC installations, potentially leading to lower energy bills over the system’s life span.

Environmental Impact

Energy-efficient systems with a high SEER 2 rating use lower energy. This minimizes a building’s carbon footprint, contributing positively to global environmental protection efforts.

Regulatory Compliance

Adhering to the newly released SEER rating standards and understanding the equivalences between SEER and SEER 2 can help homeowners abide by the latest regulations. Of course, HVAC companies are responsible for installing equipment that meets new testing standards.

In the North, pre-SEER 2 ACs can still be installed in 2023, so long as they were produced before January 1. But, in the South, only SEER 2-compliant AC units can be installed after January 1. If an installer violates these regulations and is penalized by the DOE, they are required to replace the non-compliant AC unit at no cost to the homeowner.

SEER 2 and New HVAC Installations

If you’re shopping for a new air conditionerair conditioning system} in 2023, you might see SEER or SEER 2 ratings indicated on the tag. Either rating may be considered compliant, so long as it satisfies the regional minimum.

But bear in mind, it’s imperative to note that the new SEER rating standards only pertain to systems bought and installed after January 1, 2023. Any HVAC systems installed before this date don’t need to be replaced if they still work properly. This exception was created so homeowners aren’t strained by extra expenses but are still able to promote future investments in more energy-efficient options.

Embrace SEER 2 with Confidence with Sunbeam Service Experts

Understanding SEER 2 is about more than just being introduced to a new technical concept. Instead, it’s about aligning your residence with the changing landscape of energy efficiency and environmental stewardship. SEER 2 brings a more accurate measurement to the table, impacting the way homeowners approach new HVAC installations.

Sunbeam Service Experts is ahead of the curve when it relates to this new era of heating and cooling efficiency. Our dedication to excellence, professionalism and budget-friendly financing sets us apart. We even guarantee your 100% satisfaction, so you can plan your HVAC purchases and repairs with confidence. From educating homeowners about the new SEER rating standards to offering SEER 2-compliant HVAC installations in Buffalo, the team at Sunbeam Service Experts is here for you.

Reach out to Sunbeam Service Experts to discover how we can help you adapt to the new SEER rating standards. Together, we’ll help you develop a more energy-efficient home personalized to your needs and aligned with the future of cooling technology. Call 716-427-6807 today to schedule your appointment for AC service in Buffalo.

  • How to Choose a Suitable HVAC System

    When it comes to keeping your home comfortable year-round, nothing is more essential than picking out the right heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system. This decision affects your daily comfort, monthly utility bills and overall home efficiency. Then again, with so many system... Continue reading

  • Year-End HVAC Maintenance Checklist

    Now that the air turns chilly, you know it’s time to get your home ready for the cooler months ahead. Your heating system is critical to maintaining a cozy, warm setting. A well-maintained furnace supplies the comfort you want while using a smaller amount of energy. Regular inspections also make... Continue reading

  • 2024 Furnace and Air Conditioning Trends

    In the ever-evolving world of home HVAC, keeping up with the latest HVAC trends is crucial for homeowners who want to enhance their home’s comfort and efficiency. As we move into 2024, the HVAC industry continues to innovate, bringing new technologies and trends aimed at changing how residents... Continue reading