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June 26, 2012
The biggest concern for Lawton area homeowners in the market for a new air conditioner is finding the most cost-effective solution for their home. Therefore, it is no surprise that energy efficiency has begun playing a major role in most purchasing decisions.
In order to help you and other consumers accurately compare air conditioners and heat pumps, SEER was developed by the U.S. Department of Energy to measure the energy efficiency of cooling systems.
What is SEER?
SEER is an acronym that means Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. It is important to note the first word, seasonal. SEER is the measure of an air conditioner or heat pump’s cooling efficiency rated over the entire cooling season.
That means SEER takes into account the different demands on a cooling system throughout the year and gives you a more accurate efficiency score than other ratings.
The SEER Scale
The higher the SEER of an air conditioner, the more efficient it will be throughout the cooling season. All air conditioners and heat pumps manufactured after January 23, 2006 must be at least SEER 13. This replaced the previous minimum rating of SEER 10 and represents an energy efficiency improvement of about 30%.
Saving With a Higher SEER
While the current minimum SEER for air conditioners is 13, it is recommended that you purchase a new cooling system with an even higher SEER for even more energy savings.
The best air conditioners available today use as much as 50% less energy to produce the same amount of cooling as units that were produced in the 1970’s. Even when compared with models from just 10 years ago, new air conditioners can trim 20-40% off your cooling bills.
Thinking Beyond SEER
While SEER is a great tool to use in your quest for a new, more efficient air conditioner for your Lawton area home, it should not be the only one. Some other things to consider are:
Size of unit – Bigger is not better but too small is bad, also. Make sure you know what size air conditioner you need.
Your home – If your home lacks adequate insulation or has major air leaks, it will greatly affect the efficiency of your new air conditioner.
Installation company – The most efficient air conditioner can be an energy waster if installed incorrectly. Make sure you use a trusted and reliable cooling company.