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When shopping for a new HVAC system a good place to start is with equipment that carries an ENERGY STAR label. The ENERGY STAR label was established in 1992 by the Environmental Protection Agency to help consumers easily find the best products that support energy efficiency in practice and performance to save money and decrease emissions of greenhouse gases that contribute to global climate change. Over the years although HVAC systems have improved their levels of energy efficiency, even well-maintained systems account for the biggest portion of the utility bill. The EPA awards ENERGY STAR label to appliances that meet a level of efficiency above basic industry standards. HVAC systems with ENERGY STAR labels are more efficient than those not rated by as much as 20 percent.  AC replacement or furnace replacement with ENERGY STAR rated equipment can result in significant savings in your monthly energy costs based on how much energy is used in the home.

How ENERGY STAR Equipment is Chosen

To earn the ENERGY STAR label, products must meet strict requirements established by the EPA. The product must contribute to nation-wide energy savings, use nonproprietary technology to achieve those savings, and help customers recoup costs if the item is more expensive than one that isn’t ENERGY STAR-certified. Furthermore, at any time, the performance and consumption of energy can be validated through testing. With visible ENERGY STAR labels, consumers will be able to quickly tell the difference between certified products and those that are not certified by the EPA. If a product has the ENERGY STAR label, it means it has met the requirements of the Environmental Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR program, which is designed to “Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other pollutants caused by the inefficient use of energy; and make it easy for consumers to identify and purchase energy-efficient products that offer savings on energy bills without sacrificing performance, features, and comfort.”


The new HVAC testing procedure and the SEER2, EER2, and HSPF2 ratings came into effect in January 2023. This means the ENERGY STAR certification requirements for air conditioners and heat pumps have also changed to consider the new ratings. As you see in the charts below, for equipment below 65,000 BTU/h capacity the efficiency requirements for air conditioners differ between split-type or single package. They also differentiate between conventional heat pumps and cold climate pumps which must meet higher efficiency levels. The ENERGY STAR Certification is not available for central air conditioner and heat pumps using three-phase electric power, or having a capacity above 65,000 BTU/h.

2023 ENERGY STAR Requirements for Central Air Conditioners

  • Split system ENERGY STAR minimum efficiency requirement: 15.2 SEER2 and 12.0  EER2
  • Packaged system ENERGY STAR minimum efficiency requirement: 15.2 SEER2 and 11.5 EER2
2023 ENERGY STAR Requirements for Conventional Heat Pumps
  • Split system ENERGY STAR minimum efficiency requirement: 15.2 SEER2, 12.0 EER2, 7.8 HSPF2
  • Packaged system Energy Star minimum efficiency requirement: 15.2 SEER2, 11.5 EER2,  7.2 HSPF2
2023 ENERGY STAR Requirements for Cold Climate Heat Pumps
  • Split system ENERGY STAR minimum efficiency requirement: 15.2 SEER2, 11.0 EER2, 8.5 HSPF2
  • Packaged system ENERGY STAR minimum efficiency requirement: 15.2 SEER2, 10.6 EER2,  8.1 HSPF2

HVAC Replacement with ENERGY STAR Rated Equipment

According to the Department of Energy about half of the energy used each year in your home goes to heating and cooling. By choosing ENERGY STAR rated equipment you benefit from higher efficiency and saving money on your monthly energy bills. Furthermore, along with saving money and helping keep the environment clean with fewer gas emissions, ENERGY STAR labeled products may be eligible for tax credits, rebates, and incentives from local utility companies. Also, ENERGY STAR rated products tend to last longer, since they work more efficiently, they wear out less quickly and therefore are less likely to break down. Although they may be more costly upfront, they are worth it in the long run.

Contact LA Construction, Heating and Air

Our company offers installation, maintenance, and repairs for residential and commercial HVAC systems. Give us a call today or contact us online to schedule an appointment. If you are interested in ENERGY STAR rated equipment give us a call to schedule a free consultation, we are here to help you choose equipment best for your home and that will save you money.

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