By Rob Rice
Published October 17, 2014
If you are in the market for a new gas furnace, there are many manufacturers to choose from. An important consideration when making your purchase is the reliability of the manufacturer’s products. No consumer wants to invest their hard earned money into a future headache. Unfortunately though, if you do not perform your due diligence, you could end up purchasing a furnace from a manufacturer you wish you hadn’t.
Before sharing our furnace reliability data with you, it’s important to mention a couple things: first, several of the furnace manufacturers sell the same product under multiple brand names. Generally, the reason for this is: at some point in the past, one manufacturer has purchased the other. Rather than discontinue the purchased brand, the purchasing manufacturer often deems it more sensible (i.e., financially advantageous) to continue using the purchased brand’s name but sell their existing equipment under it. For example, Carrier and Bryant are generally equivalent, Trane is American Standard, York is Coleman, Goodman is Amana, Rheem is Ruud, and so on. Second, the most common manufacturers here in the Greater Seattle area are Bryant/Carrier, Trane/American Standard, and Lennox. We install, maintain, and repair furnaces from all three manufacturers as well as a number of others.
Our on-the-job repair data indicates that Bryant/Carrier and Trane/American Standard are the most reliable furnace manufacturers currently available. Both manufacturers have had their problems (for example, Bryant/Carrier used to have issues with heat exchangers, which they resolved sometime ago, while Trane/American Standard have had problems with circuit boards), but in general these manufacturers, while not perfect, are the most reliable. Our data is further confirmed by an article Consumer Reports publishes every couple of years (or thereabout) which looks at furnace reliability. If you were to evaluate these articles over the last decade, we believe you would find that Bryant/Carrier and Trane/American Standard are most often most reliable. Take a look at the links below to see the most recent Consumer Reports furnace reliability articles:
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