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What Does an Energy Star Rating Really Mean?

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Posted April 15, 2013

We all know that a high rating from ENERGY STAR is a good thing, but we may not quite understand what that rating entails. Let’s start from the beginning. ENERGY STAR is a government program that evaluates U.S. products, new or existing homes, and commercial or industrial buildings for energy use and efficiency. ENERGY STAR can help in the following four areas:

Product Ratings

Indoor comfort products that use energy, such as HVAC systems and equipment, are subject to a SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency) rating. This rating gives consumers a point of comparison between various heating, ventilation and air conditioning products, helping them make informed choices about the products they purchase and the performance they can expect from the equipment once they put it into service. Products that earn ENERGY STAR certification have undergone stringent EPA testing and verification to ensure that they meet ENERGY STAR efficiency requirements.

Commercial & Industrial Building Ratings

This ENERGY STAR rating, also known as the national energy performance rating, is a measure of a building’s energy efficiency. The rating is based on an assessment scale between 1 and 100, with a rating of 50 indicating average performance and a rating of 75 or higher indicating high efficiency. The system measures a building’s energy performance against that of other similar buildings and is therefore a relative, rather than an absolute, measure of performance. Basically, then, the ENERGY STAR performance rating of your commercial building or industrial plant indicates where the building ranks among its peers in regard to energy use.

Home Performance Ratings

ENERGY STAR also administers a program for new homes that confers the ENERGY STAR label to those homes that have been verified to be energy-efficient by an independent accredited third-party certification organization or that have been built according to specific, program-qualifying construction specifications.

Recommendations for More Energy-Efficient Homes

ENERGY STAR also offers a program whereby current homeowners can assess the efficiency of their homes and receive recommendations for improving efficiency. Called Home Advisor, this program doesn’t actually provide a rating per se. However, it does offer customized recommendations for making homes more energy-efficient based on location and on the specific heating, cooling and water-heating equipment used.

What Do these Ratings Actually Mean?

ENERGY STAR labels, certifications and ratings are the government’s way of helping businesses and consumers make the best choices in HVAC products, services, home construction and renovation, and commercial and industrial maintenance. The ENERGY STAR program leads to the following results:

  • Energy savings for businesses and consumers that use high-SEER HVAC and water-heating products
  • Reduced costs for businesses and consumers that use these products and/or upgrade their buildings or homes to meet EPA recommendations for energy-efficient operation
  • Reduced impact on the environment as more homes and businesses participate in the ENERGY STAR program

Air Specialist: Helping Make League City TX More Energy-Efficient

At Air Specialist, our goal is to help our League City TX neighbors increase comfort while saving money by making their homes and businesses more energy-efficient. We offer a complete lineup of high-efficiency HVAC products and expert installation, maintenance and repair services to help you reach the level of efficiency that will bring optimal savings, comfort and convenience. Call today to learn more about how we can help make ENERGY STAR mean more to you.


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