The True Difference Between EER Ratings And SEER Ratings

If you have purchased AC systems or have worked with some for a while, you probably have wondered what the big different between EER ratings and SEER ratings is. These two ratings are used frequently and one substitutes the other at times. But what is the real difference between the two?

The EER Measure

The EER rating (Energy Efficiency Rating) is a system used to measure how many watts of power are used for an AC to produce about 1 Btu/h of cooling power under fixed conditions. The EER ratings were the first ever used system to rate air conditioner efficiency and were appreciated for how simple it was to calculate with it.

However, technicians saw an error in the same system because it did not account for those ACs that took a while to reach peak cooling power when turned on. Thus the EER rating was revised and some changes made to what is a now SEER rating.

The SEER Measure

In full, it is known as the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating. This system deviates from the norm of measuring energy efficiency under a constant operating temperature. To calculate SEER ratings, one has to measure how much energy is saved whenever the AC is in the cooling period; these measurements are taken under varying temperatures.

Thus, as EER ratings measure energy efficiency at constant temperature, SEER ratings take the same measurements under different temperature then average the resulting figure.

So Which Should You Use?

The standard way of taking Btu/h ratings is using SEER ratings, though the EER ratings also come to play in a lot of situations. Whichever you choose will depend on the temperature conditions in each season. For example, the EER ratings will be more efficient during summer when the temperatures are at a constant high. On the other hand, in areas where temperatures are moderate and often fluctuate during the day, the SEER ratings will be most accurate.

That is the major difference between EER ratings and SEER ratings. For more information on efficient heating and air conditioning options, feel free to call us today.

Will HVAC Efficiency Standards Go Up?

Indoor heating, cooling and air ventilation is important for high-quality indoor air. Most HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) equipments consume energy, whether electrical, gas, coal or wood among other fuels. The U.S energy department, together with other HVAC experts, have been working on preserving the environment through new energy efficiency rules and consumer encouragement actions for reduced energy consumption.

HVAC efficiency standards

Efficiency standards for HVAC equipments might or might not go up soon. HVAC experts, together with the US department of energy, proposed a raise of the efficiency standards to 90 by 2013, in 2009. Annual fuel utilization energy of 90 means that the HVAC equipment utilizes 90% of the energy it consumes to give the desired heating, cooling or air conditioning. Current AFUE stands at 78.

The move to raise efficiency standards was met with mixed reactions. New building owners and the local government figured that this move would save consumers money, as they would not lose much energy through the use of their HVAC equipments, and the government would contribute towards energy saving through reduced national energy consumption. Whereas initial acquisition and installation of new high-efficiency HVAC equipments might cost consumers and building owners more money than the current systems, the gradually saved energy would reduce overall energy consumption.

Challenges that face the increase in efficiency standards

Owners of buildings with old HVAC systems find the move to raise efficiency standards inconveniencing in terms of cost and time. The new high-energy efficient equipments do not have the same ventilation systems as the old ones, and that would need an absolute demotion of the existing systems’ ventilation, and installation of new systems’ ventilation. The demolition and installation of new HVAC systems’ ventilation would cost a lot of money and take up time. For these people, retaining their less-energy efficiency equipments seem cost effective, and that is why such are the groups moved to challenge the increase in efficiency standards for HVAC equipments.


It is not yet known whether or not standards for HVAC equipment will go up as proposed by the US department of Energy, in 2009. The move was supposed to be implemented by 2013, but its opponents felt it would be inconveniencing and costly to people who have older HVAC systems. Whether the motion to raise these standards passes or not, all consumers should ensure their HVAC (assessment of HVAC needs, acquisition, repair, servicing and replacement of HVAC equipments) services are conducted by qualified and licensed HVAC contractors.