Understanding SEER Ratings: How Much Can You Save?

Understanding SEER Ratings: How Much Can You Save?

When it comes to your HVAC system’s energy efficiency, the SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) rating is a crucial metric to consider. SEER measures how efficiently your air conditioner or heat pump operates during a cooling season. But what does a higher SEER rating mean for your energy bills? In this blog, we’ll explore the approximate percentage of savings you can expect for each level of SEER, helping you make informed decisions about your HVAC system.

Understanding SEER Ratings

SEER ratings range from a minimum of 13 to the highest level of efficiency, which can be 25 or more. The SEER rating indicates how many BTUs (British Thermal Units) of cooling a system can provide per watt of electricity consumed. As the SEER rating increases, so does the efficiency of the system.

Approximate Percentage of Savings

  1. SEER 13-14: These are standard efficiency units. Compared to older systems with lower SEER ratings, upgrading to a SEER 13-14 system can result in approximately 10-20% energy savings. While not the highest efficiency available, this level still provides a noticeable improvement in energy consumption.
  2. SEER 15-16: Moving up the efficiency ladder to SEER 15-16 systems can lead to approximately 20-30% energy savings compared to older models. These units offer a better balance between upfront cost and long-term savings, making them a popular choice for many homeowners.
  3. SEER 17-18: With SEER 17-18 systems, you can expect energy savings of around 30-40%. These units are more advanced and offer superior performance, especially in regions with hot climates where air conditioning is used frequently.
  4. SEER 19 and Above: High-efficiency systems with SEER ratings of 19 or higher offer energy savings of approximately 40% or more. While the upfront cost might be higher, the long-term savings and environmental benefits can make these systems a smart investment for those committed to energy conservation.

Factors Influencing Savings

It’s important to note that actual savings can vary based on several factors:

  • Climate: The more you use your cooling system, the more significant the potential savings. Regions with hotter climates can benefit more from higher SEER systems.
  • Usage Patterns: If you rely heavily on your HVAC system, a higher SEER unit can deliver substantial savings over time.
  • Insulation and Home Efficiency: A well-insulated and energy-efficient home can optimize the benefits of a high SEER system.
  • Utility Rates: The cost of electricity in your area directly impacts the savings you’ll experience.


SEER ratings provide a clear indication of your HVAC system’s energy efficiency. Upgrading to a higher SEER system can lead to substantial energy savings, helping you reduce your environmental impact and save money on utility bills. When considering an upgrade, take into account your climate, usage patterns, and home efficiency to make an informed decision. Consulting with HVAC professionals can guide you toward the best SEER rating for your specific needs, ensuring optimal comfort and savings.


Contact B&W NOW at 317-243-3581 to schedule your FREE comfort consultation.