If you’re in the market for a new, energy-efficient air conditioner, keep your eye out for the yellow EnergyGuide label that all models are supposed to have. You can take advantage of this label to learn a lot about the efficiency of an air conditioner, and make the best choice for your needs.
Here’s how to read the EnergyGuide label that the U.S. government requires be present on all heating and cooling equipment, along with many other major home appliances:
- Look in the upper left corner to see the appliance’s key features. These features will be found on many similar models in a specific cost range, which is shown in the middle of the EnergyGuide label.
- Glance at the upper-right corner for details about the maker, model number and size of the appliance.
- Check out the middle of the EnergyGuide label for the dollar amount (which is the estimated yearly operating cost) marked on a scale, which measures the cost range of similar models. The smaller the number is in relation to the scale, the more efficient the appliance is. For example, if the scale ranges from $130 to $210, and the air conditioner that you are examining has an estimated yearly operating cost of $135, it is among the most efficient systems compared to models with similar features, price, and cooling capacities.
- Look near the bottom of the EnergyGuide label to see the estimated yearly electricity use in kilowatt-hours (kWh). Multiply this number by our local current electricity rate to get a more accurate yearly operating cost. The dollar amount in the middle of the EnergyGuide label ($135 in this example) is less accurate because the figure is determined based on the national average cost of electricity.
- If you spot the Energy Star logo in the bottom right corner of the EnergyGuide label, you have found a product that exceeds government minimums and uses less electricity than standard models. The initial cost may be higher, but the operating costs during the unit’s lifetime should be significantly lower.
To learn more about choosing the right air conditioner or other HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) appliance, please contact Roth Heating & Cooling in Portland today. We proudly serve residential and commercial customers.