The star rating system of air conditioners has become so prominent that it is one of the first things that one looks at while buying an air conditioner. Most of the people in India can immediately imagine that recognizable star rating tag when we talk about it.
The star rating is inextricably linked with an AC’s energy efficiency, cooling capacity, and the price tag as well. Being present on every AC by every single brand, it gives the consumer an easy picture about the unit’s power consumption. While it’s easy to discern that more stars mean higher energy efficiency, most people don’t know what the ratings exactly mean. Let us find out.
The origin of star ratings
The system of star rating in air conditioners was introduced by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), which is an Indian government agency that falls under the Ministry of Power.
This was done to assist consumers to make informed decisions while purchasing home appliances, such as air conditioners, refrigerators and water geysers. The rating is done on a scale of 1 to 5, wherein a 5 star AC represents the highest energy efficiency and a 1 star AC represents the lowest efficiency.
EER and ISEER
The grading system by BEE is called Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER). Air conditioners are rated in BTU (British Thermal Units) irrespective of their capacities and tonnage. The BTU depicts how fast an air conditioner can cool a room, with a fixed temperature outside.
Now, in 2018, BEE made it mandatory to use a new star rating methodology called Indian Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (ISEER) for air conditioners, as a successor to EER. Since the temperatures across India vary greatly, and see extreme changes throughout the seasons, the EER standard’s method of calculating performance was not perfect.
Hence, ISEER is a more sophisticated rating methodology that factors in variance in higher temperature in India, and rates air conditioners accordingly.
Technically, ISEER is the ratio of the ‘total amount of heat that the AC can remove from the room’ to the ‘total amount of power consumed by the AC’. The ratio calculated is then used to select the correct star ratings.
What do the stars mean for the consumer?
- A 5 star AC will function a lot better than a 3-star AC, and performs optimally as it consumes a lesser amount of energy. So, it is environment-friendly and will also save you money on electricity bills.
- An AC with a higher rating will be more powerful. It will cool the room faster than a lower rating AC. Moreover, it will generate less noise.
- If you reside in a place with a hot and tropical climate, you use an AC more often. In this case, a 5 star AC would be the right choice for you as it would cool the room faster, and save money on bills.
- If you stay in a place with a cooler climate, you would probably need the AC only during the hot months. Here, a 3 star AC can suffice as it would be a cheaper investment, and the difference in electricity bills wouldn’t be significant.
Where and how to buy?
You can buy from the best ACs in India to a basic AC on online platforms such as Amazon and Flipkart. If you need some assistance, guidance and personal service, buying from a nearby retailer would be a good option.
Additionally, if you need financing to buy an AC, you can use the Bajaj Finserv EMI Network Card, which is arguably the most popular EMI option in India. With this, you can get a pre-approved loan of up to Rs. 4 lakh, with over 1 lakh partner stores spread across 1,900+ cities.