man looking at paper adjusting thermostat

What energy efficiency ratings mean and why they’re important

More than half of your utility bills in Plainfield 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 certain 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 assesses the cooling efficiency of your equipment at varying temperatures. Higher SEER ratings indicate better energy efficiency, and therefore, more affordable utility bills. For chillier northern states, The Department of Energy requires a minimum 13 SEER rating. Warmer, southern states must have a 14 SEER-rating minimum. If your unit has a lower SEER-rating, an upgrade could bring you a valuable 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 used—kind of like the miles per gallon you get from your car. Higher AFUE ratings equate to lower energy costs. So, an AFUE rating of 80 means that 80% of the heat generated by your furnace is heating your home, and 20% of the heat is escaping through venting.

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

At PWA Heating & Cooling Inc, you’ll find equipment with top energy efficiency ratings. We can help you find out the energy efficiency of your existing equipment and help you find ways to improve that efficiency and save money—whether with regular maintenance or with new, more efficient equipment. Just call us at 815-768-6656 or schedule an appointment with us online.