The New SEER2 AC Ratings: What Do They Mean?

Have you heard about the new regulations surrounding the energy efficiency of air conditioners? Well, if you’re planning to buy a new AC anytime soon, it’s time to read up about what they mean. In short, energy regulatory boards have introduced a new energy efficiency rating system. It’s stricter and aims for higher efficiency of air conditioning systems. The new rating system is SEER2, and you can learn all about it here.



SEER is an abbreviation for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio. It’s a system that measures an air conditioning unit’s cooling output divided by its energy consumption in watt-hours. In essence, a higher SEER rating means a more efficient air conditioner as it uses less energy to cool an area.

The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio ratings for air conditioners and heat pumps typically sit between 13 to 26. Higher ratings mean greater energy efficiency. The current minimum rating mandated by law for new air conditioners in Canada is 13. Units with a rating of 14.5 or higher are ENERGY STAR certified. Although units with higher Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio ratings cost more, they may lead to lower energy bills in the long run due to increased efficiency.


SEER2 is the new and improved rating standard. Effective as of January 2023, this new system will replace the previous rating system. Don’t worry though, it still works the same way – the higher the rating, the more energy-efficient the air conditioner is.

The SEER2 rating system has been put in place to ensure that air conditioning systems are operating with the goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050. It’s an all-new standard that has more rigorous testing requirements to guarantee that the systems are functioning in accordance with the new standards. It’s an upgrade from the previous energy efficiency rating system, which had been in place for many years and had some deficiencies.

What does it mean?

All air conditioning manufacturers must adhere to the new rating system and M1 testing regimen. Air conditioning units and heat pumps in Canada must now meet the new efficiency standards. The minimum rating for heat pumps has increased from 14.0 to 15.0 SEER. 

However, there are still some exceptions to the new regulations, including:

  • Heat pumps manufactured before January 1, 2023, can still be sold and installed after this date. 
  • Any AC unit with a SEER rating of 13.0 that was produced before January 1, 2023, can still be sold and installed.
  • Any heat pump with a rating of 14.0 made before the same date can still be installed.

The goal of the new rating system is to increase the efficiency of air conditioners and heat pumps that rely on refrigerant to operate. By improving efficiency standards, you’ll benefit from cost savings on energy bills and help reduce your environmental impact. Not only that, the updated standards have led to the development of a new generation of HVAC systems that are both eco-friendly and efficient. Plus, they provide better features and lower energy costs in the long run. 

Contact Spring Home to Learn More 

Although these new systems may come at a higher initial cost, the benefits they provide make it a worthwhile investment. So, when you buy an air conditioning unit, keep an eye out for the SEER2 rating system. It’ll help to make sure you’re getting the best energy-efficient product possible!

To learn more about the new rating system or to upgrade your unit, call Spring Home.

The Spring Home team has been servicing the HVAC needs of the GTA for over 20 years. Our award-winning team of licensed technicians is committed to providing our clients with service they can trust and equipment they can rely on.

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