It’s been more than 20 years, but one star on the horizon still provides as much illumination as it did in 1992. It’s the Energy Star, and it should serve as your guiding force if you’re about to replace your air conditioner or furnace.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency joined forces with the U.S. Department of Energy in 1992 to classify those cooling and heating systems, appliances and electronics that have undergone and passed rigorous efficiency tests. The reward? The bright blue label with the star on it.
In addition, another helpful label, the bright yellow EnergyGuide label, contains valuable information such as the name of the manufacturer and estimates on how much energy an air conditioner or furnace consumes and how much it costs to run — information you should read carefully before buying new HVAC equipment.
Depending on the model, Energy Star air conditioners can reach astounding efficiency levels: Up to 97 percent, in some cases. This efficiency, in turn, translates to lower cooling bills — possibly as much as 20 percent lower, according to the energy department. Naturally, the savings are greater in homes where drafts and air leaks are plugged and sealed and ductwork is sealed and insulated. After all, it makes no sense — or cents — to purchase an Energy Star-qualified air conditioner and then stand by as the cool air you’re paying for escapes through holes and cracks in the ductwork.
Besides their impressive efficiency, Energy Star air conditioners are distinguished by other qualities, as well:
- Quiet operation
- Consistent temperatures
- Proper airflow
- Balanced humidity
- Healthy air
Your new Energy Star air conditioner should run for many years if you remain vigilant about maintaining it, keeping it clean, changing the filter regularly and scheduling an annual tune-up.
You can maximize this important investment by ensuring that your air conditioner is sized properly for your home. A system that is either too small or too large will run inefficiently.
When you place your trust in T.F. O’Brien Heating & Cooling, we’ll also check your ductwork and recommend any repairs before discussing your equipment options. Contact us today. Like the Energy Star itself, we promise you a thoroughly illuminating experience in every way.