Earning the ENERGY STAR means products meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the US Environmental Protection Agency. By choosing ENERGY STAR certified heating and cooling equipment and taking steps to optimize its performance, you can enhance the comfort of your home while saving energy. Saving energy helps you save money on utility bills and protect our climate by helping prevent harmful carbon pollution and reducing other greenhouse gases.
ENERGY STAR qualified central air conditioners:
- have higher seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) and energy efficiency ratio (EER) ratings, making them over 15% more efficient than conventional models.
The central air conditioner also needs a blower motor – which is usually part of the furnace – to blow the cool air through the duct system. The only way to ensure that your new air conditioner performs at its rated efficiency is to replace your heating system at the same time. It’s especially recommended if your furnace is over 15 years old. If you purchase a new energy-efficient air conditioner but connect it to an older furnace and blower motor, your system will not perform to its rated efficiency.
What else should I look for when buying a central air conditioner?
Remember, even though these products can be more expensive to purchase up front, the cost difference will be paid back over time through lower energy bills.
Consider regular maintenance of your heating and cooling system to prevent future problems and unwanted costs.
The Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE) and the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) have developed an online database which identifies high efficiency equipment that has been tested to ARI 210/240 and verified by AHRI. Please note that the Directory lists the products that meet the performance levels specified in the ENERGY STAR Central Air Conditioner and Air-Source Heat Pump specification.
However, only those products that have been listed by an ENERGY STAR partner can be recognized as ENERGY STAR qualified. Please see the ENERGY STAR Partner List for more information. Starting mid-January 2011, AHRI will provide a list that clearly distinguishes ENERGY STAR qualified units.