Changes are coming for HVAC energy efficiency standards in 2023. As part of the Inflation Reduction Act, new HVAC products will have to meet updated energy efficiency requirements than previously mandated. On top of that, the Department of Energy is also updating efficiency testing procedures.
At ServiceOne, our team is here to help keep you updated on all things happening within the HVAC industry. As we begin to see these changes in the new year, there is some information you need to know. If you’re planning on updating your heating and/or air systems in the next year, this information will impact your decision on what’s best for your home. Below, we go over some energy efficiency ratings changes you can expect to see in 2023.
What are the Energy Efficiency Standards?
Energy Efficiency is broken down into a few standard categories for HVAC equipment. Depending on your HVAC system, there are four metrics used to measure efficiency: SEER2, HSPF2, AFUE and EER2.
SEER stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio. SEER ratings measure the efficiency of your home’s air conditioner throughout the season. SEER ratings range from 13-23, with a higher SEER rating indicating better efficiency.
HSPF stands for heating seasonal performance factor. This is used to measure the efficiency of your home’s heat pump. Again, higher-efficiency heat pumps result in higher HSPF ratings.
AFUE stands for Annualized Fuel Utilization Efficiency. This rating indicates how much fuel your furnace uses that is converted to heat.
EER2 stands for energy efficiency ratio. This rating measures your home’s air conditioner efficiency during high temperatures throughout the year.
BTU stands for British Thermal Unit, but it’s used all over the world to measure how much energy your air conditioner uses to remove heat from your home within an hour.
SEER2 vs EER2
SEER and EER ratings are similar, as they both are used to measure the efficiency of your home’s air conditioner. However, both ratings are used differently. SEER2 is used to measure your air conditioner's efficiency only during the cooling season. EER2 is used to measure your air conditioners only at the peak temperature of 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
2023 rating changes
Starting January 1, 2023, there will be changes to the minimum efficiency requirements for your home’s HVAC systems. The minimum SEER requirements will increase from 13 to 14 in the northern regions, which includes both Iowa and Nebraska. HSPF requirements are increasing from 8.2 to 8.8 HSPF for all regions across the country. The new AFUE ratings will be 80% for all regions; the Northern region was previously required to be 90%.
Lastly, EER2 requirements are also increasing to 12.2 EER on units less than 45,000 BTU and 11.7 EER on units of 45,000 BTU or greater if the SEER is greater than 15 but less than 16. The minimum will be 10.2 EER on any unit of 16 SEER or greater.
As energy efficiency requirements increase next year, most homeowners with updated HVAC systems will not be affected. However, if you have an older model heating or cooling system, it may be time to upgrade your equipment. If you are unsure whether your equipment will meet the new efficiency requirements, our team is here to help. Give us a call to schedule an HVAC inspection appointment today!