When in the market for your next HVAC system, you are sure to hear the word “SEER” more than once. We get lots of questions about what exactly SEER is and how does it relate to your wallet.

What does SEER even mean? SEER (seasonal energy efficiency ratio) refers to the energy efficiency of your heating and air system during the cooling phase and plays a direct role in the operating costs of your unit. To be more precise, its the cooling output divided by the total electricity input during a typical cooling season.

Units with a higher SEER rating may cost more upfront; however, you can save money over the life time of your unit with a more efficient system. A heat pump has a life span of about 15 years, so the amount you can save will really add up. There are multiple SEER calculators found on the web that can show you your estimated savings. I used the calculator found on energystar.gov.

For example, if your current system is rated as 10 SEER (most units purchased before 2006) to an Energy Star 16 SEER, you can save approximately $1,971 over the lifetime of your unit. That’s a savings of 29 percent!! If you select a 16 SEER over a 13 SEER, your estimated savings will pay for the additional upfront costs in less than 7 years. With the use of a programmable thermostat, you can save an additional $199 per year.

Leaky ductwork, lack of preventative maintenance, and other factors can prevent your system from performing as efficiently as it should. Give Davis Heating & AC a call for more information on SEER and other ways you can save money on your utility bill.