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Posts tagged ‘SEER’

R-22 Dry Charge Systems After 2015

Service tech talking with homeowner 1_HR

We received a question about the potential decline of the R22 Dry Charge units after the 2015 efficiency regulations go into effect and thought others might want to read about this topic.

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How to Prepare For New Regional Efficiency Standards

The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 provided for the next round of government regulated standard efficiencies allowed for air conditioners sold in the United States. These new standards will go into effect on January 1, 2015. What is unique about these new efficiency standards is that they have allowed for different standards for various parts of the country rather than having just one national standard. Similar to the standard efficiency increases experienced in 2006 when the minimum went from 10 SEER to 13 SEER, this regulation will apply to all equipment, whether it is being installed in an existing structure as a system replacement or in a new structure.

Here is a summary of what you need to know about the new regulations:

Northern States – Minimum 13 SEER air conditioning remains the standard, but heat pumps go to 14 SEER and 8.2 HSPF.

Southern (Southeastern) States – Minimum efficiency goes to 14 SEER for both air conditioning and heat pumps and 8.2 HSPF for heat pumps. The 8.2 HSPF/14 SEER heat pump rating will become a national standard.

Southwestern States – Minimum efficiency also goes to 14 SEER for air conditioning, but there is a new standard for EER that will call for 12.2 EER for systems less than 45,000 BTUH and 11.7 EER for systems over 45,000 BTUH. Heat pumps require national standard of 14 SEER and 8.2 HSPF.

What can you do?

Here are few things you can do to prepare for these new standards:

  • Stay in touch with us via this site or our other contractor support sites as we get closer to the implementation date.
  • Watch for OEM’s to change their product offerings to be ready for these new standards. Emerson is working directly with all the major OEM’s to help them be ready, but each one may have a slightly different approach to meet the needs of three different regions.
  • Train your employees on the latest in new equipment which will feature electronic controls, variable speed blower motors and more. You can stay current through Emerson training or through your OEM’s training.

For more information go to http://www.ac-heatingconnect.com/contractors/toolkit/.

Chandra Gollapudi
Efficiency and Regulation, Air Conditioning
Emerson Climate Technologies

Comparing Apples to Apples: Understanding Government Ratings

Air conditioners, furnaces and heat pumps all have different regulations and different rating criteria. It is important to keep these ratings in mind when you are comparing various systems from different manufacturers as they will tell you the true performance characteristics of each. Because these can be confusing to read, below is a brief summary on the ratings and what they mean.

SEER – This stands for “Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio” and is simply the average efficiency at which your central air conditioner will run during various conditions. An average is used because the efficiency performance will change from the hottest summer months to the warm spring or fall months. The U.S. currently has a minimum SEER rating of 13 for all central air conditioners. High efficiency systems are rated above 16 SEER and deliver the most energy savings throughout the year.

EER – This stands for “Energy Efficiency Rating.” This is a peak load rating, which tells you how efficiently your air conditioner will perform on the hottest days. This rating is important to consider if you live in very hot, dry areas that remain hot most of the year as the system will be at or near peak load more often. EER’s range from 8 to more than 15 and should not be confused with SEER ratings. An EER rating over 12 is excellent. Some systems have very good SEER ratings, but are compromised on their peak load performance. If you live in a hot area you should evaluate both SEER and EER to keep your electricity bill low in the summer. If you are in a more moderate climate zone it would be better to focus on the SEER ratings.

HSPF – This stands for “Heating Seasonal Performance Factor” and is a rating used to describe a system’s heat pump efficiency. These ratings range from 8 to more than 13 HSPF. As with SEER and EER, a higher number represents a more efficient system. If you’re using a heat pump with another heating source, such as a gas furnace, the HSPF will only be reflective of the heat pump and not the duel system capacity.

AFUE – This stands for “Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency” and is the standard efficiency rating for furnaces that burn fossil fuels like natural gas or heating oil. AFUE ratings are expressed in terms of efficiency percentages where the lowest efficiency equipment might have AFUEs of around 70% and the highest efficiencies are more than 90%.

You may not realize it, but the United States has some of the highest minimum efficiency standards for air conditioning in the world. These standards were put into practice over the past 20 to 30 years as the adoption of central air conditioning in the U.S. was expanding rapidly. These regulations were required to make sure the increase in power used for air conditioning did not put too much stress on the electric power grid, and also to help reduce environmental impacts.

Chandra Gollapudi
Efficiency and Regulation, Air Conditioning
Emerson Climate Technologies

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