What to Look for on Your HVAC System
Ever wonder what all of those ratings (such as SEER, HSPF, or AFUE) mean on heaters and air conditioners? Our HVAC service experts explain who created these ratings and what they mean.
SEER stands for “seasonal energy efficiency ratio”, which is used by the Air Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI). These ratings are used to determine how efficient a central air conditioner is and are calculated using the air conditioner’s BTUs (which are units of energy) and the number of watts the air conditioner uses. The rating numbers are usually between 10 and 18; the higher the rating, the more efficient the air conditioner.
While SEER ratings are applied to central air conditioners, EER ratings are applied to room air conditioners. EER stands for “energy efficiency ratio”, which is also calculated using BTUs and the air conditioner’s wattage. Again, the higher the rating, the more efficient the air conditioner.
HSPF stands for “heating seasonal performance factor” and is also used by the AHRI. The rating is used to determine the efficiency of an air source heat pump and is calculated using the pump’s BTUs and wattage. The ratings range from 7 to 10 and the higher the rating, the more efficient the heat pump.
Oil-fired and gas-fired furnaces use the AFUE (“average fuel utilization efficiency”) rating to rate their efficiency. If a furnace has a rating of 80%, it means that 80% of the fuel that you put in the furnace is converted to heat. The higher the rating, the more efficient the furnace.
If you have any questions about these ratings, contact our HVAC service experts. We’d be happy to help.