What energy efficiency ratings mean and why they're important

January 10, 2017

The cost to heat and cool your home totals more than half of your utility bills. That’s why it’s so important to search for a system that offers superior comfort in your Sacramento home while still being energy efficient. Greater energy efficiency means your system is operating well while using less energy. Whether you are thinking about a replacement air conditioner or furnace or looking to upgrade your current equipment to be more energy efficient, there are some ratings to be aware of that will help you during the procedure. So what exactly do those energy efficiency ratings represent?

SEER (used to measure cooling efficiency)
SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. The SEER rating reflects the effectiveness of your unit at different temperatures, meaning, seasonally in Sacramento. A larger SEER rating signifies a higher energy efficiency, which will turn into less expensive utility bills. The Department of Energy expects a minimum 13 SEER-rating for cooler states in the north and a 14 SEER-rating minimum for warmer, southern states. If your home has an older unit with a lower SEER-rating, you could see extreme energy savings after an upgrade.

AFUE or HSPF (used to measure heating efficiency: gas or electric)
AFUE stands for Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency ratio and it finds the percentage of heat produced for every dollar of fuel expended. You can consider it as the MPG on your car. The larger the AFUE-rating, the lower your energy costs. If your furnace has a AFUE rating of 80, that signifies that 80% of the heat produced is consumed to heat the home, while 20% of the heat is wasted through venting.

HSPF stands for the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor and is used to keep track of the heating efficiency of heat pumps. It is the SEER rating for winter as it only keeps track of your unit’s heating efficiency. Like the others, the higher the number, the more energy efficient the heat pump.

American HVAC Inc in Sacramento presents equipment with the highest energy efficiency ratings. If you are uncertain what the energy ratings are of the system in your home we would be more than willing to help you become better informed to keep your home content, while saving money. Give us a call at 916-243-6714 to arrange for an appointment with us.