man looking at paper adjusting thermostat

What energy efficiency ratings mean and why they’re important

More than half of your utility bills in Carlsbad are comprised of the cost to heat and cool your home. To save as much money as you can, you should find a system that can supply home comfort as efficiently as possible. The better your system’s energy efficiency, the more your system is doing while using less energy. If you’re preparing to upgrade or replace your HVAC equipment, you should understand a few terms and ratings to be fully informed and get the best energy efficiency possible.

SEER (used to measure cooling efficiency)
The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER, rating calculates the cooling efficiency of your equipment at various temperatures. Higher SEER ratings indicate better energy efficiency, and therefore, more affordable utility bills. For colder northern states, The Department of Energy requires a minimum 13 SEER rating. Warmer, southern states must must have a SEER rating of 14 or higher. If your unit has a poor SEER-rating, an upgrade could bring you a beneficial spike in energy savings.

AFUE or HSPF (used to measure heating efficiency: gas or electric)
Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) ratio measures the percentage of heat produced for every dollar of fuel expended—just like the miles per gallon you get from your car. Higher AFUE ratings usually mean lower energy costs. So, an AFUE rating of 80 means that 80% of the heat created by your furnace is heating your home, and 20% of the heat is wasted through venting.

The Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) measures the heating efficiency of heat pumps. It is in essence the SEER rating for winter given that it measures only heating efficiency. Like the other ratings, higher numbers denote better energy efficiency.

At Banister's Heating & Air Conditioning Services, you’ll find equipment with the best energy efficiency ratings. We can help you determine the energy efficiency of your existing equipment and help you find ways to improve on it and save money—whether with diligent maintenance or with new, more efficient equipment. Just call us at 575-887-7777 or schedule an appointment with us online.