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Department of Energy Minimum Efficiency Standards

Happy December!

I’d like to pass along VERY important Department of Energy information about the heating and cooling system for your home and how it is affected by new regulations.

We hope we are your trusted, go-to home HVAC professional and as such you should expect us to keep you informed of any regulations or industry changes that affect you and your home.

Beginning January 1, 2023, the Department of Energy (DOE) is increasing the minimum efficiency standards (referred to as SEER2) for central air conditioners and heat pumps.

These new standards make many of the current systems obsolete or non-compliant. The DOE has mandated that all residential systems installed on or after 1/1/2023 meet the SEER2 testing requirements and display the Federal Trade Commission Energy Guide label verifying the compliance with SEER2, EER2, HSPF2 ratings.

What does this mean for you, the homeowner?
Don’t panic!
Repair parts for your existing system will be available for at least 10 years down the road. This is the typical warranty period, and all manufacturers must supply repair parts during any warranty period. By the way, if you have one of our extended or labor warranties, that warranty still applies.

Does this mean the price of a new, compliant system will cost more?
Unfortunately, the answer is yes, quite a bit more. Covid shortages and inflation have increased the cost of current equipment significantly. With the new compliant product, all of our manufacturers have increased their price yet again by 15-20%.

Can I buy the old equipment at the old price before the 1/1/2023 deadline?
Yes and no.. We, the contractor, are still allowed to install the old equipment right up until the end of 2022. Problem is these is not very much old equipment out there as the manufacturers cut back mid-year to make sure they did not get stuck with non-compliant equipment. At the time of this writing, we have only limited supplies of the older, less expensive equipment.

Do I have to replace my entire system including the furnace under the new regulations?
No, this is specific to the AC or cooling portion of the system. The regulations read SEER2 matchup of condenser and furnace coil. If your furnace has an advanced blower or an ECM then you will not need to replace the furnace. Warning! If you think you may need to replace your furnace this winter, make sure you buy a variable-speed compliant furnace. It will not cost much more than a standard furnace and is guaranteed to be SEER2 compatible with your new AC that you buys years down the road.

Thanks for the email but now I am totally confused! Who can I talk to?
Any or our Comfort Advisors can speak with you. They are available anytime and are happy to give you some no-nonsense advice on this transition.

We are grateful for the trust you continue to place in us taking care of your HVAC needs. It does mean a lot to all of us at Priority Heating and Cooling.

It’s a pleasure to serve you.


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