What You Need to Know About the SEER Number on Your Air Conditioner

SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio and means just that. This rating is supposed to help you understand the energy efficiency that your air conditioner runs on.  There is also a seasonal energy efficiency ratio for furnaces, although these are typically referred to as AFUE standing for Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency.

These ratings are dependent on your cooling or heating systems operating efficiency and each rating is defined clearly by the Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration Institute to help you in making your long term choices when purchasing new air conditioners. A lot of the older air conditioning systems have a SEER rating of 6 or sometimes even less, now a days, or since January of 2006, the energy efficiency rating of new air conditioners must meet or exceed 13.

The SEER rating is calculated by tracking the amount of cooling your system (outdoor compressor & indoor unit) is able to produce for each unit of energy that it uses. If it needs to consume less energy to put out the same amount of cool air as another conditioner, then you are saving energy and in turn, having to pay less on your utility bills. Although a higher SEER rated air conditioner may be more expensive at initial purchase, it will save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

If it really is that much better for the environment, and saves that much more money, why are all models not higher SEER ratings? Just like I mentioned above, governments have pushed to make this possible. That is why in Canada; in order qualify for the Energy Star the unit must be 14 or greater. How manufacturers get their models ratings high all depends on the components and special features they include in the units. That is why you will pay more for a higher seasonal energy efficiency ratio as it is made up of higher end and more elaborate components.

So it is all pretty self explanatory once you know the basics, the higher your SEER rating, the more energy & money you will save. On an annual basis, even moving from an 8 SEER to a 13 SEER you will save approximately 32%. If you are upgrading to a 21 you can save almost 60%! Check out the air conditioner savings chart we have put together to help you determine how much you could be saving monthly!

7 Tips for Keeping Cool & Saving Energy

With summer just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about ensuring your home is comfortable. Here are some air conditioning tips to get your home ready for the summer, while saving energy and money as well.

  • Air conditioners are design for around a 20 degree change in temperature. For instance, 100 degree air would only be cooled to 80 degrees. In this case, the hotter it is in your home, the longer and harder the air conditioner works, utilizing a lot of energy and in turn, your hard earned money.
  • To ensure your HVAC system isn’t overworked, and that you and your family is breathing clean air, change the filter in your air conditioner at least four times a year.
  • Consider alternatives to using your air conditioner on days that aren’t quite as hot as others. Simple things such as closing your blinds, shades and drapes on windows facing the sun, installing blinds or shades that are white and will reflect heat, and turning on ceiling fans or portable fans instead will keep you cool and save energy.
  • A nice breeze can more often than not do wonders for a hot interior. Opening windows or screen doors can allow the breeze to flow through the house which will cool the air.
  • An air conditioner in a properly shaded area can perform as much as 10% more efficiently. Trees or shrubs can provide the necessary shading, while still allowing air to flow around the air conditioner. Keep in mind that a technician will need easy access to provide service, so if you do plant trees or shrubs, ensure they aren’t too close.
  • Make sure your system is maintained throughout the year, especially before those incredibly hot summer days begin. Regular tune-ups reduce the risk of common malfunctions, and ensure that your air conditioner won’t leave you with the discomfort of a really warm home.
  • Some common sources of internal heat gain include, but are not limited to appliances, devices and lighting. If possible, avoid placing these near the air conditioners thermostat as they will trick the air conditioner into thinking the house is warmer than it is, leading it to run longer and waste energy.

For inquiries or questions regarding air conditioners, central heating, or other HVAC needs, contact us today at (705) 503 HEAT.

6 Ways to Save Money on Your Heating Bill

Save Money on Heat

  1. Program your thermostat
    A programmable thermostat is great, especially in these cold winter months. You can program your furnace to run at specific times, that way you are not spending money on heating your home when you are not there, and you can guarantee that your home is warm for when you return home.
  2. Use your ceiling fans
    Ceiling fans are not just to cool down a hot room in the summer, but to circulate air in a room through any season. If you use your fans in reverse motion, they do a great job of circulating the warm air throughout your home, cutting down on your furnaces work.
  3. Unblock heating vents
    Turning the furnace up should not be your first instinct. If you’re noticing that the area you are in is colder than the rest of the house, go around and make sure all your heating vents are clear and that there is nothing blocking them. It can be anything from clothes on top of a vent to a dresser too close to the vent, blocking or containing the heat.
  4. Fix Leaks and Drafts
    Are there spots throughout your home that cold air is finding it’s way in? This can be a tedious job if you don’t know where these spots are already, although you can have a professional in to test this for you. The most common places to look at around doors & door frames, windows, openings to attics, and even in some older homes it has been known to come through under trim that is on an outside wall at ground level.
  5. Repair Air Ducts
    The duct work in your home can become damaged or ripped. If your duct work is easy to get to, inspect it to see if there is any patch jobs or repairs that need to be made. If there are damages in your air ducts, it may be causing heat to escape.
  6. Furnace Upkeep
    Continually doing maintenance and upkeep on your furnace helps it to run more efficiently and increase its life expectancy. In turn, this will save you money on your heating bill and put less pressure on your furnace.
We at Affordable Comfort Heating and Cooling can assist with most of these furnace and heating solutions. Feel free to give us a call as we would be more than happy to help, keeping your family comfortable.

Why Choose Us?

Find Out What Makes Affordable Comfort One of the Top 3 Barrie HVAC Companies.

Wide Range of Services

We offer a full range of Heating, Air Conditioning, and Air Quality Services to the Barrie, Ontario area.

24-7 Emergency Service

Whether your furnace, AC unit, or boiler breaks down at 12:00am or 12:00pm, we’re here to help!

0% Financing Options

We offer 0% financing options on many of the heating and cooling HVAC services we offer in Barrie & area.

BBB Accredited

Affordable Comfort Heating & Cooling is accredited with the Better Business Bureau and holds an A+ rating.

TSSA Quality Assessed

Affordable Comfort Heating & Cooling Barrie provides service quality assessed by the TSSA.

HRAI Member

Affordable Comfort is a member of the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute of Canada.