As with many home appliances (eg refrigerators, washing machines, ovens, etc.), air conditioners are categorized into energy classes to help consumers. Their classification is based on their energy efficiency, ie the beneficial amount of energy they release in space, compared to what they consume. Energy classes ranged from A +++ to G. It is noteworthy that class A +++ is the most efficient, whereas class G is less efficient.
Until recently, the classification of air-conditioning units in energy classes was based on two indicators, the degree of COP and the degree of energy efficiency (EER). The two indices are calculated by dividing the energy delivered (heating or cooling) to the electricity consumed. It is worth noting that high values of each index reflect better levels of efficiency in the heating or cooling mode of the machine.
However, based on the EU’s newer legislation, which was drawn up for the production and use of less energy-intensive and polluting air conditioners, the above indicators were not objectively reflecting the actual performance of certain types of air conditioners (mainly Inverter devices). Therefore, two new indicators (SCOP, SEER) have been introduced which more objectively reflect the actual energy efficiency of air conditioners. In particular, their main difference from the previous ones is that they calculate the parameter of the machine’s annual operation.
The seasonal heat output coefficient (SCOP) and seasonal energy efficiency (SEER) represent the entire heating or cooling period, respectively. They are calculated by dividing the annual heating or cooling required by the annual electricity consumed respectively. The SCOP is calculated on the basis of the annual temperature readings obtained in three separate climatic zones (Cold, Average, Warm). Instead, the SEER is calculated on the basis of the annual temperature readings obtained only in the average climate zone.
There are also models that were produced before the adoption of this legislation and are only accompanied by the COP and EEF.
The table below shows the distinction of air conditioners in energy classes based on seasonal energy yields of cooling and heating.