Understand Energy Efficiency Ratings to Help The Environment

Today, with global warming reaching alarming levels,  it is each and every individual's duty and obligation to do as much as they can towards reducing it. Each person can easily contribute. They just need a little perseverance and will to do his / or her own part in tackling the issue, starting with their home.

Yes, you got it right. Start the revolution at your own home by opting for energy-efficient heating and cooling devices that emit relatively lesser greenhouse gases. This approach will mark your efforts in saving the environment and at the same time, save you big bucks. 

So, how do you go about finding these energy-smart cooling and heating products? Consumers can easily identify these products by determining their energy efficiency ratings. This article aims at educating readers in this field.

First and foremost, you need to know that energy efficiency of a cooling or heating device is calculated by its annual fuel utilization efficiency (AFUE). This is measured by the percentage of energy used that is actually returned to your house as warm air. Today's energy-efficient forced-air furnaces generally have an AFUE of 93.2. This means that on every dollar spent on heating energy, your house gets back 93.2% in the form of warmth.

Hence, if you have furnaces with AFUE of less that 60%, you should upgrade them to high-efficiency models. This can reduce your monthly electricity bill by up to 40%. To find out the AFUE ratings of a particular product, you simply need to look at the yellow-black guidebook of the product.

Now that was about forced-air furnaces. What are you supposed to do when it comes to determining the energy efficiency of cooling devices? Well, the answer is check out for the air conditioner's seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER). SEER is derived when the cooling output is divided by power consumption, after factoring in the other variables such as climate. The higher the air conditioner's SEER, the better it is for the appliance. A SEER of 10 is ideal for an energy-efficient device. Like AFUE, SEER can also be located in the yellow-black guidebook.

To ensure that the electronic device that you have set your eyes on is highly energy-efficient, check for an EnergyStar logo on it. These products generally exceed the standards of minimum federal energy use. EnergyStar has thousands of products starting from basic water heaters to high-tech computers.

Doing your part in identifing energy-efficient products and replacing non-efficient appliances is not only eco-friendly, but will save you money every month. As they say, one good deed deserves another.

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