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New 2023 SEER HVAC Efficiency Regulations

HVAC heating and air conditioning residential units or heat pumps

In an effort to reduce energy consumption and help the environment, the U.S. Department of Energy has introduced new HVAC efficiency regulations that went into effect on January 1, 2023. For homeowners in the Tampa area who are considering an air conditioning or heating upgrade in the near future, this may mean higher initial costs for the equipment installation. However, utility bills will be lower for the life of the system.

What Are SEER Ratings?

There are three common ratings found on heating and cooling equipment to help consumers compare the energy efficiency of systems from different manufacturers. These include:

  • SEER: Found on air conditioners, as well as heat pumps in cooling mode, the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio reflects the amount of energy used in relation to the cooling output of the system for a typical cooling season, with higher numbers indicating greater efficiency. The most efficient systems have a SEER of 20 or higher.
  • HSPF: Found on heat pumps operating in heating mode, the Heating Seasonal Performance Factor describes the energy used in relation to the output BTUs of a heat pump. Higher numbers represent greater efficiency, with the most efficient systems earning an HSPF of 10 or above.
  • AFUE: Found on furnaces and boilers, the Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency rating indicates the percentage of fuel turned directly into heat for the building. Higher numbers indicate greater efficiency, and the most efficient furnaces and boilers have AFUE ratings of over 97%.


Updated Minimum SEER Requirements

The primary goal of the new regulations is to increase the minimum efficiency ratings for all new HVAC equipment installed in a home or business. In the Southeast region, which includes Florida, this means that:

  • All new air conditioners must have a SEER of 15 or higher, up from 14 SEER
  • All new heat pumps must have a SEER of 15 and an HSPF of 8.8, up from 14 SEER and 8.2 HSPF
  • All new furnaces must have an AFUE of 81%, up from an 80% AFUE

HVAC systems with higher efficiency tend to cost more, though long-term energy costs will be lower. The ratings above are the minimum requirements for a new HVAC installation, though you can choose to install more efficient systems to reduce your monthly energy costs even further.

New SEER2 Ratings

Along with updated SEER requirements, the U.S. Department of Energy has also introduced new SEER2 and HSPF2 ratings that better reflect the real-world performance of heating and air conditioning systems.

In the new SEER2 standard, an air conditioning system with a SEER of 15 would have a SEER2 rating of 14.3. Similarly, a heat pump with an HSPF of 8.8 would have an HSPF2 of 7.5. Both of these ratings reflect the new minimums for HVAC installations.

When shopping for a new system, SEER or HSPF ratings should only be compared to other SEER or HSPF ratings. Likewise, SEER2 or HSPF2 ratings should only be compared to other SEER2 or HSPF2 ratings. These ratings will be found on the yellow “Energy Guide” stickers that all new appliances typically have.

HVAC Installations & Replacements in Tampa, FL

Is it time to upgrade the air conditioner or heat pump in your Tampa home? Talk to our experts at All American Home Services. We offer heating and air conditioning installations and replacements throughout the Tampa area, with great financing options for qualified buyers. Plus, all of our high-quality HVAC installations are completed by certified HVAC professionals. Our company is family-owned and -operated, with prompt, reliable service, 24/7 availability, and friendly, helpful personnel.

Call us today at 813-486-4038 or contact us online to request a quote for an AC or heating installation in the Tampa area.



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