Picking a new air conditioner requires more than simply knowing your budget. Orange County, CA, residents should also pay close attention to the SEER rating of whatever model they’re considering. Additionally, there are several AC efficiency features to choose from. When it’s time to choose your new AC, you’ll want to take the SEER rating and efficiency features into consideration. Although they may initially give your AC a higher price tag, they’ll help you save a lot of money in the long run!

What Is a SEER Rating?

The SEER rating on your AC helps tell you how energy efficient it will be. SEER is an acronym that stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio. Its purpose is to let consumers know how much energy their AC will use in relation to how much cooling output it has.

A SEER rating is determined by taking a typical cooling season and dividing how much output the unit will have to expend by the amount of energy the AC typically consumes. Rather than forcing consumers to struggle to figure this out, SEER ratings were invented. In other words, all you have to know is that the higher the number is, the more energy-efficient your AC unit will be.

Of course, it’s vital to remember that the SEER number indicates each unit’s maximum possible efficiency. You’ll need to operate your AC in peak conditions to achieve this level. Therefore, if you let your AC go unmaintained and/or live in an area with scorching hot summers, such as Orange County, your energy usage will bring your SEER level down.

What SEER Rating Should I Look For?

In theory, you would look for the highest SEER rating you can afford. However, it also depends on your personal AC usage and needs. For California, new systems must have a minimum SEER of 15. So, if you have to get a unit that’s initially more affordable, you can choose a SEER rating of around 15 to 16. Those who are more concerned with purchasing an energy-efficient unit should buy an AC with a minimum SEER of 17.

However, more should go into your decision-making process than the initial price tag. After all, you’re going to have your AC for a number of years. Let’s say that you purchase an AC with a SEER rating of 15 because you want to save money. This will most definitely save you money upfront, but the longer you have your AC, the more money you’ll spend on your energy bills.

On the other hand, purchasing an AC with a SEER rating of 18 will absolutely cost you more money initially, but it will also bring your energy consumption down. Over time, the 18 rating should save you a considerable amount of money versus the 15 rating. It’s up to you to decide if you want to pay more upfront or over the long haul. Keep in mind that the 18 rating will also be much more environmentally friendly.

Efficiency Features

Another thing to consider is the efficiency features that come with your new AC. It’s possible to purchase a unit with a high SEER rating and end up paying more money on energy bills than expected. That’s why you must also evaluate the various efficiency features and ensure you’re informed enough to make a wise decision.

Variable Speeds

If you want to save money, save energy, and get a longer lifespan out of your AC, then it’s imperative to look for a unit that offers variable speeds. Let’s say you currently have an older AC. The odds are good that it only offers one speed, which means it will blast out cool air until it reaches your optimal temperature. Then, once the temperature in your house rises again, it’ll run full blast yet again.

Fortunately, many newer air conditioners have variable-speed motors. The system will choose the lowest speed to adequately cool your home in a set amount of time without getting too cold for a while. Overall, a variable-speed AC unit is definitely a smart investment.

Zoning Capabilities

Another way to ensure your AC is as efficient as possible is by choosing one with zoning capabilities. Essentially, this will enable you to customize the temperature in different zones rather than setting one temperature for the entire house.

Many people close their air vents to try to save money, but this can actually cause your unit to work harder and reach the end of its lifecycle more quickly. Instead, investing in an AC unit with zoning capabilities lets you keep certain rooms cool and save money!

A Smart Thermostat

Perhaps the most important efficiency feature is a smart thermostat. Buy the right one, and you’ll have practically endless control over your thermostat without having to physically touch it.

First off, as long as your thermostat is Wi-Fi enabled, you can adjust your settings from anywhere in the world. This comes in handy when you leave for vacation without realizing you didn’t turn your AC up. Simply go online and change it! Additionally, smart thermostats allow you to set up regular temperature changes at different times. Some models can learn your routines and fine-tune the schedule to meet your real-life demands.

Quieter Operation

One thing that many people dislike is the noise level attached to their AC unit. Buying a new AC can help you bring peace and quiet to your household. This may not help you with energy efficiency, but if you work from home, it will help improve your personal productivity. Be sure to look for one that offers a decibel rating below 50.

Purification and Air Filtration Systems

Whether you have allergies, asthma or simply want your home’s indoor air to be safer for your family, getting a new unit with a built-in air filtration and purification system is a fantastic idea. Options include activated carbon filters, HEPA filters, and ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) technology. These work together to remove viruses, pollen, bacteria, mold spores, and dust from the air. Your family can enjoy better health, and you’ll reap the benefits of having this efficiency feature.

Smart Home System Connectivity

Finally, getting an AC that can integrate with your smart home features gives you more access and saves you money! You’ll get to use hands-free operation for everything that you connect to. Remember: anything in your home that you can turn off remotely will help you bring your energy bill down.

Anaheim’s Heating and Cooling Resource

When it’s time to install a new AC, repair your heater or heat pump, do air duct cleaning, install a smart thermostat and much, much more, our veteran-owned company can help! Sano Heating & Air Conditioning has 15 years of industry experience, and you can rely on us to offer precision, integrity, and quality. Are you in need of a new AC unit? Contact us today to get started!

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