There is talk around the campfire about the U.S. government once again raising the minimum SEER rating on all air conditioners being produced. Last time this happened was in January 2006. This ruling states that all residential air conditioners sold in the United States must have a SEER of at least 13. ENERGY STAR qualified Central Air Conditioners must have a SEER of at least 14. Whenever the government changes the minimum SEER rating, prices tend to go up on almost all systems, no matter their SEER rating.
To calculate the energy efficiency of an air conditioner, the SEER rating system measures the cooling output of the unit with the total amount of electricity it uses during an entire season. The higher the energy efficiency, the lower it costs you to run it, viz-a-vi the higher the SEER rating of the unit, the more energy efficient it is. With the benefit of SEER ratings, you can more easily choose the most energy efficient a/c unit to fit your needs and your wallet and/or purse. With the rising costs of energy usage, you can't afford not to know about getting the most from your heating and a/c system. The Lennox website has a simple SEER calculator to help give you a general idea on savings with different SEER systems.
Basically, if you know your air conditioner is getting old and you think it might be about time to see about purchasing a new system, now is the time! Like I said above, whenever the government comes down with these SEER changes, the price on new systems goes up, so don't say we didn't warn you! At Environmental, we give free estimates on system replacements and we would be glad to help you out today!