Who Makes The Best Heat Pump System? Best Heat Pumps 2021

Heat pumps come in numerous shapes, sizes, brands, and efficiency ratings. The search for the ideal heat pump can be complicated, especially considering the abundance of manufacturers in the market today. 

This article reviews the various heat pump brands to help you narrow down which heat pump brand is best for you, so continue reading to learn more! 

Top Heat Pump Brands

Among the many heat pump brands, several often rank better than others. Some of the best heat pump brands include:

  • Carrier
  • Trane
  • Lennox
  • Goodman
  • Bryant  

Each of these brands earned their place within the leading ranks for a reason. With that said, certain brands shine when it comes to reliability, durability, and longevity. 

Now let’s get into the details of each brand. 

Carrier Heat Pumps

Carrier produces some of the HVAC industry’s leading heat pumps. Carrier offers eleven heat pump models in various sizes to accommodate the needs of different homes. The top models are in the lead for energy efficiency, alongside Lennox heat pumps. 

Carrier divides its heat pump lineup into three series: Comfort, Performance, and Infinity. Comfort models are the entry-level products, while Infinity models are their top-tier heat pumps. The newest model within the Infinity lineup boasts an air purification system that can inactivate up to 99% of pesky airborne pathogens, including coronaviruses. 

These models are known to be quiet during operation, durable, and reliable. Carrier heat pumps can last up to 25 years with proper maintenance, most heat pumps typically last between 10 and 20. 

FactorCarrier Heat Pumps InfoScore
Number of Models115
SEER14-245
HSPF8.2-135
CompressorSingle-stage, two-stage, or variable speed5
Sound Level55-74 dB3
Size1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 5 ton5
Limited Parts Warranty5-year or 10-year3
Replacement Limited Warranty5-year or 10-year(Compressor)3
Cost$$$4
Composite Rating38/45

Goodman Heat Pumps

Goodman’s heat pumps are affordable, reliable units that are well known within the HVAC industry. Although they offer a limited lineup consisting of only five models, their units are comparable to some top brands. 

The most efficient model Goodman offers, GVZC20, has exceptionally high ratings for a mid-range brand, boasting ratings up to 21 SEER and 10 HSPF. Select Goodman models feature ComfortBridge technology that helps boost the unit’s operating efficiency. With this technology, homeowners can regulate their heat pump remotely. 

Goodman uses special louvered coil guards that protect the coils on the outdoor unit from damage such as hail or sticks. Additionally, the factory installs filter-driers to help absorb and eliminate contaminants and moisture.

FactorGoodman Heat Pumps InfoScore
Number of Models53
SEER15-215
HSPF9-104
CompressorSingle-stage or two-stage3
Sound Level54 to 76 dB3
Size1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 5 tons5
Limited Parts Warranty10-year4
Replacement Limited Warranty10-year or 2-year4
Cost$$4
Composite Rating35/45

Bryant Heat Pumps

Bryant heat pumps stem from a company whose origins date back to nearly a century ago (now owned by UTC). Like many other brands, Bryant splits its heat pumps into three tiers: Legacy, Preferred Compact, Preferred, and Evolution. 

Legacy models are the value units, while the Evolution models are the premium heat pumps of the lineup.

Bryant and Carrier’s models are 95 percent identical, as they are sister brands. The high HSPF rating on Bryant’s top models makes them an ideal heat pump for cold climates. These units boast noise levels as low as 58 decibels.

Although Bryant’s warranty is below-average compared to other brands, they offer the option to extend the warranty, which is not typical of most heat pump manufacturers. 

FactorBryant Heat Pumps InfoScore
Number of Models105
SEER14 to 245
HSPF8.2 to 135
CompressorSingle-stage, two-stage, or variable speed5
Sound Level58 to 68 dB4
Size1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 5 ton5
Limited Parts Warranty10-year or 5-year4
Replacement Limited Warranty10-year, certain models(Compressor)3
Cost$$$4
Composite Rating40/45

Trane Heat Pumps

Trane is another leading brand that offers an excellent lineup of heat pumps. With ten available models that come in seven different sizes, Trane’s product line can effortlessly see any home’s needs. 

Trane models tend to be on the expensive end of the spectrum, but they offer some of the quietest, most reliable heat pumps on the market. They utilize a Climatuff compressor, which is well-known throughout the HVAC industry for its reliability. 

The control board on these units boasts advanced diagnostics to assist in troubleshooting, making the process quick and straightforward. High-end models boast excellent sound insulation and variable speed compressors, earning their place for the lowest noise levels in the heat pump market.

FactorTrane Heat Pumps InfoScore
Number of Models105
SEER14-204
HSPF8.2-125
CompressorSingle-stage, two-stage, or variable speed5
Sound Level43 to 765
Size1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 5 tons5
Limited Parts Warranty10-year4
Replacement Limited Warranty10-year or 12-year(Compressor)4
Cost$$$3
Composite Rating40/45

Lennox Heat Pumps

Lennox is one of the HVAC industry’s well-known manufacturers. Their heat pumps are among the most efficient in the industry, tied alongside Carrier heat pumps. Unique to Lennox heat pumps are the nifty solar-powered feature that lets the sun power the heat pump. 

Additionally, Lennox heat pumps feature excellent humidity control, allowing homeowners to regulate the ease of breathability in their homes. Lennox heat pumps also come with a dual-fuel option.

Lennox offers a communicating system called iComfort technology, which allows connection to a WiFi thermostat for optimized performance efficiency. 

FactorLennox Heat Pumps InfoScore
Number of Models105
SEER245
HSPF11.84
CompressorSingle-stage, two-stage, variable speed5
Sound Level58-70 dB3
Size1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 5 ton5
Limited Parts Warranty5-year or 10-year4
Replacement Limited Warranty10-year(Compressor)4
Cost$$$4
Composite Rating39/45

Brand Comparison

In previous sections, we addressed each of the top brands noted for reliability, performance, efficiency, and more. The chart below further expresses why these five brands made the cut, as well as their advantages and disadvantages.

Brand NameHeat Pump RatingProsConsBest For
Trane40/45DurableFalls slightly behind competitor ratingsNumerous models available to suit different climates and regions. Since they are more expensive than other brands, they require a higher budget.
Energy Star RatingsCan be costly
Various models availableAverage warranties
Bryant40/45Long-lasting with proper maintenanceAbove-average costsThe high HSPF rating makes these units some of the best cold climate heat pumps. Bryant is a national company, so finding a dealer isn't tricky. Additionally, Bryant offers several other HVAC items that are compatible with their heat pumps.
Numerous sizes and ratings available to suit various situationsNot as efficient with cooling as other models
Below average warranties
Lennox39/45Highly efficientReplacement parts can be hard to getLennox heat pumps are an excellent choice for climates demanding high-efficiency ratings. However, they do require a high budget.
Diverse range of modelsExpensive
Duel-fuel capabilitiesBelow-average warranties
Carrier38/45Excellent service record for reliabilityAverage warrantyThe top models with high HSPF ratings are ideal for cooler climates. Just like with Trane models, shoppers need to be willing to spend more if they choose Carrier.
Wide variety of available sizesAmong the most expensive in the industry
Easily accessible parts
Goodman35/45AffordableDoesn't last as long as competitorsGoodman heat pumps are an outstanding choice for homeowners searching for an affordable unit. While these units are considerably more affordable than most top brands, their ratings don't suffer because of it.
Decent qualityLimited options
Excellent warranties
Parts are readily available

How To Determine The Best Heat Pump For Your Home

Choosing the ideal heat pump system for your home can be an overwhelming undertaking, especially considering the vast number of brands and models in the market. 

Here are several factors to consider when choosing a new heat pump:

Your Budget

Of course, your budget is a top consideration when selecting a heat pump. Most brands offer numerous heat pumps that increase in price as efficiency ratings multiply. Generally, brands divide their heat pumps into three levels based on good, better, best. 

Entry-level heat pumps tend to be less expensive but don’t feature as high of efficiency ratings. Heat pumps within the “better” level are usually mid-range models that combine efficiency with moderate pricing. The top-tier models tend to be the most efficient but also the most expensive of the three up front but provide lots of savings on energy bills later. 

Your HVAC Dealer

Additionally, homeowners must consider whether their local HVAC dealer has the brand, model, and size they are looking for. Some HVAC dealers work with just a single heat pump brand or two to three, so they aren’t all-inclusive of all brands. 

Ensure you communicate with your contractor to check they have what you want. 

Warranty

HVAC units typically run for several thousand dollars at least, especially including installation. With an investment of this size, it is essential to have a solid warranty to protect your significant investment if something malfunctions. 

It’s best to look for brands that offer excellent warranties, as this means the company is willing to stand behind its products for more than just a few years. 

Many heat pump brands require the homeowner to register the product to receive the warranty, so make sure you verify the requirements surrounding it, as certain things may void the warranty. 

What are the worst heat pumps? The worst heat pump brands tend to offer short warranties, have numerous customer complaints regarding reliability and longevity, and so on. 

Size

To establish what size of heat pump you need for your home, consider the size of your home and the climate you live in. As a general rule of thumb, you’ll need 30 BTU of heating output per square foot of living space as a general rule of thumb. If you have 1,250 square feet of living space, you’ll need a 37,500 BTU (3-ton) heat pump.

SEER and HSPF

Additionally, warm climates require high SEER ratings. Cool climates demand high HSPF ratings. Decent SEER and HSPF ratings work well in moderate temperatures.

Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) ratings measure the heat pump’s cooling efficiency. The number is calculated using the cooling output for a regular cooling season divided by the total electric energy input during the identical time frame. Like SEER ratings, Heating Seasonal Performance Factor (HSPF) refers to a heat pump’s heating efficiency. 

What are the most efficient heat pumps? Lennox and Carrier’s top models are the most efficient heat pumps, with ratings up to 24 SEER. Which brand of heat pump is the most reliable? The top brands noted for reliability include Carrier, Trane, and Goodman. 

Here is how the efficiencies of all five models compare. 

ModelSEER RatingHSPF Rating
Lennox Signature Series XP2523.510.2
Carrier Infinity 2020.513
Bryant Evolution Series 284ANV2413
Goodman GVZC202110
Trane XV20i2010

Make Your Choice

Once you determine the heat pump size you need, compare and contrast the top heat pump brands. There are countless choices available to suit the needs of various scenarios, each offering different price points, sizes, efficiency ratings, etc. 

If you need help, contact your local HVAC contractor. 

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