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Energy Efficiency
What is a S.E.E.R rating?

SEER Ratings apply to the cooling equipment in your central air system, used to measure the efficiency of your air conditioner or heat pump in the cooling cycle.


S.E.E.R. is an established  efficiency rating, much like how miles per gallon (MPG) is used to rate automobile efficiency and cost for usage. We understand that if you drive 200 miles and use up exactly 10 gallons of gas, then your vehicle’s fuel efficiency (MPG) is 20 miles per gallon (200 miles divided by 10 gallons). A vehicle that gets 26 MPG would be more efficient (less costly) to operate, and a 14 MPG vehicle is less efficient (more costly) to operate.


SEER Ratings work in a like manner. The higher the SEER (Similar to the higher MPG) the less it costs to operate although the task is the same.


SEER is the HVAC industry term for the efficiency of an air conditioning or heat pump (in the cooling mode) and SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. The seasonal energy efficiency ratio is the amount of cooling that an air conditioner delivers per watt of electricity used to power the air conditioner. In other words, a higher SEER unit uses less electricity, for a variety of reasons.


What is the difference between S.E.E.R and E.E.R.?


Up until the mid-1970's, there was no universal standard of measurement for HVAC energy efficiency. In 1975 the Air Conditioning & Refrigeration Institute (ARI) introduced the E.E.R. (Energy Efficiency Ratio) for the purpose of rating the cooling efficiency of HVAC units. E.E.R. equaled the rated cooling output of an HVAC unit in BTU’s per hour divided by the rated input of energy in watts of electricity, measured at specific humidity conditions, and specific temperature input as well as output conditions.


The formal definition of (EER) Energy Efficiency Ratio is a steady state efficiency measurement of BTUH cooling output versus power (watts) input or BTUH/WATT at a specific set of indoor and outdoor dry bulb and wet bulb temperature conditions. However, this wasn't an accurate measurement as summer conditions in different parts of North America vary, although the temperatures may be the same. Varying humidity levels are a good example.


The latest rating method, S.E.E.R. (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio), was started as an alternative to the original E.E.R. This was done to more accurately consider the seasonal affect on the efficiency of HVAC products in different areas of the U.S. and North America.


Every residential air conditioner or heat pump system (65,000 BTU/H or less) today carries a SEER rating and many carry an EER rating as well. EER ratings are used more in commercial applications and is used to meet the criteria for some rebate programs.


Bottom line is that the higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the system is to operate and that equates into savings on your operating costs. Considering that your heating and cooling system seasonally is probably your largest user of energy in your home, it only makes sense that you would want to operate it more efficiently.

Make your home even more efficient with a NEXIA Home Intelligence System allowing you to control your home's comfort system remotely!





What does a furnace AFUE rating mean?

The AFUE is the most widely used measure of a gas furnace's heating efficiency. It measures the amount of heat actually delivered to your house compared to the amount of fuel that you must supply to the furnace. Thus, a furnace that has an 80% AFUE rating converts 80% of the fuel that you supply to heat -- the other 20% is lost out of the exhaust.


Very Simple:


90% AFUE Rated Furnace- Converts 90% of the fuel input to usable heat, only 10% lost

95% AFUE Rated Furnace- Converts 95% of the fuel input to usable heat, only 5% lost


In a scenario where you have a 25-40 year old furnace, that carried a 60% Efficient Rating (AFUE) in its prime, you may be operating at as low as 45% efficiency due to the age of the furnace.


Now imagine operating at a 95% or higher efficiency with a NEW FURNACE!


You could improve your efficiency by up to 45-50%! 



Natural Resources Canada's (NRCan's) Office of Energy Efficiency (OEE) promotes the international ENERGY STAR symbol in Canada and monitors its use. Major manufacturers and retailers of energy-efficient products, utilities and energy retailers, and interest groups from Australia to Europe recognized the benefits of ENERGY STAR to consumers and have joined in promoting the symbol.

ENERGY STAR is the international symbol of premium energy efficiency. Products that display the ENERGY STAR symbol have been tested according to prescribed procedures and have been found to meet or exceed higher energy efficiency levels without compromising performance.