If you’re in the market for a new AC system for your Cypress, TX home or business, you likely have encountered SEER ratings. The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating refers to your AC system’s energy efficiency. While a higher rating means greater efficiency, you should take into account the following four factors when choosing your next air conditioner.

1. Your Area’s Climate

Areas with high humidity and heat levels affect how well your AC system operates. When you live in a hot, humid Texas climate, you’ll benefit from purchasing an air conditioner with a higher SEER rating. A system with a high SEER rating can fight the heat and humidity more effectively to keep your indoor environment comfortable.

2. Your Budget

Air conditioners with high SEER ratings come with a more expensive upfront cost. However, they can save you money on utility bills over time. If you expect to use your AC system frequently during the warmer months, an AC system with a high SEER rating might be the best option in terms of cost savings. By contrast, people who live in areas with mild summers might save money when they choose a system with a lower rating because they won’t have to use it as much.

3. Local Utility Rates

Your local utility rates should also factor into your cost vs. benefit analysis. If the electric utility rates in your area are high, an AC system with a high SEER rating might save you more money. A more efficient system uses less electricity than a lower-rated one, resulting in lower utility costs.

Compare the higher initial cost of an air conditioner with a high SEER rating to the potential cost savings you’ll enjoy over the system’s lifespan. Since the local climate might require you to use your AC system for multiple months out of the year, you might find a higher-rated system will save you money on utilities over time.

4. Available Rebates and Incentives

Rebates and incentives can greatly reduce your investment when choosing an air conditioner with greater energy efficiency. Consider the following incentives that might be available:

  • Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) federal tax credit
  • HOMES rebate program
  • Incentives through local utility companies

IRA Tax Credits

The federal government passed the IRA and included federal tax credits for high-efficiency upgrades. While the government provides the largest savings for heat pumps because they are more energy-efficient, it also provides incentives for new AC systems with high SEER ratings.

The IRA allows you to claim a federal tax credit of up to 30% of your eligible expenses up to a maximum. For central air conditioning systems, the maximum is $600.

HOMES Rebate Program

The HOMES rebate program provides credits for installing different energy-efficient systems. This rebate program doesn’t have income limits and provides rebates based on the energy savings your new system will provide. For example, a system that results in 20% achieved energy savings makes you eligible for the lesser of 50% of the project cost or $2,000 while a whole-house AC system that provides 35% or more energy savings makes you eligible for the lesser of 50% of the project cost or $4,000.

Local Utility Company Incentives

Some local utility companies also offer incentives for installing energy-efficient air conditioners and appliances. Since these programs have different guidelines, check with your local utility provider to learn more about what it might offer.

What to Know About AC SEER Ratings

Air conditioner SEER ratings range from 13 to 25 or higher. Lower ratings mean less efficiency while higher ratings mean greater efficiency.

Lower-rated systems come with a lower initial cost, but they might be more expensive in terms of energy costs over the long run. Systems with high SEER ratings are more expensive initially, but their greater efficiency translates into energy savings.

Talk to Our HVAC Experts

At AirDepot in Cypress, TX, we offer a full menu of expert HVAC services, including AC repair, AC installation, AC maintenance, heating repair, installation, and maintenance, indoor air quality services, and commercial AC repair and installation. Our HVAC technicians have delivered quality services to area residents and businesses for nearly five decades, earning numerous awards and recognition.

Contact us at AirDepot today to learn more about our air conditioning services and how we can help.

Meet the Author

company icon