Regardless of what type of climate you live, one thing is certain: having a reliable and efficient HVAC system makes life more comfortable and enjoyable for everyone. And that’s why, before you hire an HVAC contractor, it’s important to learn a bit about which HVAC brands are the highest quality of the bunch. The best central air conditioners will provide more reliable performance over time, and keep you from shelling out a small fortune to keep your house as cool or warm as you want it. Here’s a quick roundup of some of the best on the market today, all worth the money as long as they fit your needs properly.
According to the latest HVAC Consumer Reports findings, American Standard is one of the most reliable brands in the business. The company gets far fewer repair calls for its A/C and heat-pump systems than most other brands in the business. They have a large lineup to choose from, and if you decide on this brand you can feel good about paying a premium, because you’re getting a whole lot of value with that purchase. American standard is definitely one to consider when trying to find the best central air conditioner.
There’s a reason that many people refer to Carrier as the top-of-the-line model. Their systems are built with more stringent quality control than most other manufacturers, and the material used in each build is of the highest quality. This means that Carrier will cost you more, but when you want something efficient that’s going to hold up, the extra price is worth the money. Another advantage to using Carrier is the wide selection the brand has to offer. You’ll find more options with this manufacturer than with most for exactly the product you need.
Goodman is another brand on this list that isn’t quite as revered as Trane or Carrier, but all the company’s products have solid build quality and warranty programs you can count on, and they’re a real value. Goodman heating and cooling products are more affordable, and it’s hard to find a manufacturer that offers more value to its customers overall. Goodman HVAC is a great choice when trying to find the best central air conditioner.
Trane is often billed as the “Cadillac of HVAC suppliers” and that’s because it’s one of the most reliable brands in the business. Trane is known for upholding warranties and offers a standard 10-year warranty that covers both parts and labor for that nice warm feeling of security after your new system is installed. Trane products are often pricier than other brands, but as the old saying goes, “You get what you pay for.”
There’s a reason that Rheem is regarded as one of the best brands in the industry. The company is known for being on the cutting edge side of things, and they produce highly efficient models time and time again. They come with quality warranties, and make a strong case for any homeowner. Rheem is one of the top brands to consider when trying to find the best central air conditioner.
Out of all the top brands on this list, Lennox is the one known most for efficiency. The company fights tooth and nail to make their equipment more efficient each and every year, and that’s why you can pick up models with remarkably high SEER levels like 23.5 on the Signature XP25 system. The company can offer equipment with efficiency levels up above 98%. Another reason to consider Lennox models is that many heating systems accept more than one type of fuel. It’s not uncommon to find a system that uses both a heat pump and gas. Sure, you’ll spend more for this versatility up front, but it will save you over time.
York is a particularly economic brand known for its value pricing. IT comes with three distinct lines of products to pick from: the Latitude, the LX, and the Affinity. The Latitude is the smaller, less efficient, and more affordable option with units right around 13 SEER. LX is a step up, with up to 14.5 SEER, and the Affinity line offers a wide range of products between 13 and 18 SEER, but it’s known for being extremely quiet and should be purchased when noise is a real concern. York is also one of the top brands when trying to find the best central air conditioner.
Ruud is a reliable brand that offers a full lineup of heating and cooling products. The company makes products for both residential and commercial use. There’s plenty of testing and customer reviews that back up Ruud products as being long-lasting, but one thing that stands out about Ruud is that parts are readily available in most areas of the United States and Canada. This means warranty issues can be cleared up quickly and repairs generally aren’t too costly.
Amana is a solid mid-range offering that’s perfect for the homeowner looking for products in the 13 to 18 SEER range. You won’t find top-of-the-line units in the 20+ SEER range, but you won’t be expected to pay a premium for that equipment either. Amana is known for offering one of the best warranties in the business, and compressors come with a Limited Lifetime Replacement warranty that’s good for the expected operating life of the unit.
Heil is another top brand that doesn’t get as much love as it should. The company stands out for its Observer Technology. This tech allows different heating and cooling components to talk to one another. When the parts talk they synchronize performance, becoming more efficient and reliable overall. That’s why Heil products can achieve up to a 97% efficiency rating and SEER figures of 19. Top Heil products come with comprehensive warranties, and it’s not out of the ordinary for a full heat coil or compressor to be replaced if it fails within the first 10 years of operation.
Getting a good brand is important whether you’re outfitting an old home with a new system, or having the first system put in your brand new build, but it’s not everything. The best Trane, Ruud, or American Standard equipment won’t perform any better than a no-name bargain system if it’s not installed properly. That’s why you have to work hard to find a quality installer in your area in order to find the best central air conditioner, and that means you can’t skimp on installation costs.