January 22, 2021

MERV, SEER, AFUE and HSPF. You’ve heard of these terms before, but do you know what these HVAC rating acronyms mean? The experts at Bob Cermignano Air Conditioning & Heating, Inc. define and explain each acronym below.


Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, or MERV, indicates a filter’s ability to capture particles in the air. MERV values range from 1 to 16. The higher the MERV rating, the better a filter is at trapping certain types and sizes of particles. To maintain maximum air flow, it is critical to speak with a HVAC professional about what MERV rating works best with your HVAC system.


Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, or SEER, rates the cooling efficiency in heat pumps and air conditioning systems. SEER represents the relationship between how much cooling efficiency is produced and how much electricity it costs to produce it. Therefore, the higher the SEER rating, the more efficient the system is at converting electricity into cooling power.


Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency, or AFUE, rates the heating efficiency in furnaces and boilers. AFUE states the amount of energy converted to heat your furnace. For instance, an AFUE rating of 90 means that your house is heated 90% by fuel, while the remaining 10% leaves as exhaust with the combustion gases. Thus, the higher the AFUE rating, the more efficient the system is at converting electricity into heating power.


Heating Season Performance Factor, or HSPF, rates the heating efficiency in heat pumps. HSPF represents the ratio between the heating power to the electrical input. The minimum HSPF efficiency rating of a heat pump is 8.2. The maximum HSPF efficiency rating a heat pump is 10.2.

Whether you are in the market for a new HVAC system or are simply wondering how efficient your current HVAC equipment is, HVAC rating acronyms are critical terms to know and understand. Please call our office at 610-642-6323 to speak with one of our trained HVAC professionals or visit our website to learn more.

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