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How does a SEER Rating Work?

Here in Canyon Lake, TX, this is the season for buying new air conditioners, and if yours is on its last legs, you might be in the market for an upgrade before our Texas heat gets going in earnest. Among the factors you should be studying is the new unit’s SEER rating, which measures the air conditioner’s efficiency. The tern stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, and if at all possible, you want to find a system with a rating higher than the system it’s replacing. Most SEER ratings sit between 13 and 18 these days. The higher the rating, the more efficient the system. But what does that mean exactly? Let’s take a look.

It Can Save You Money

The rating itself is simply the number you get when you divide the AC’s cooling energy (in British thermal Units) by the amount of energy in watt-hours it consumes to produce that energy. So a system with a SEER rating of 16 produces more cooling power with less energy than one with a SEER rating of 14.  Theoretically, that means you can save money with a more efficient unit… provided that you run it about as often as you ran your old unit. Run it more often, and you’ll get more cooling power for the same cost, but the benefits will come in the hours used, not the savings on your monthly bill.

Size Matters Too

In addition, you shouldn’t like SEER rating trump size, by which we mean that your air conditioner needs to be powerful enough to cool your home appropriately. If the SEER rating is higher, but the unit is too small to cool your home, then you’ll lose the advantage of its efficiency, since you’ll need to run it for longer periods of time before it cools your home.

The folks at Cowboy’s Air Conditioning and Heating are ready to help!

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