The Best Furnace Brands of 2021
Selecting one of the best furnace brands can help ensure you choose a reputable and reliable model when you replace or upgrade a furnace.
A furnace is the center of the home heating system, ensuring that the indoor environment remains warm, even in freezing temperatures. That means it’s important to choose an efficient new or replacement furnace to effectively heat the home without ridiculous heating bills. Most top furnace brands have been in operation for decades, with some having HVAC expertise going back over 100 years.
This list of the best furnace brands of 2021 provides the ideal place to start the search for a furnace for a new build or to replace an old unit. Take the time to learn about each brand’s benefits and choose the option that best suits your preferences and budget.
Known for: Lennox furnaces offer a wide range of options, including noise-reducing features with variable blower motors.
Price: $$ to $$$$
Editors’ Choice: With SilentComfort Technology, this Lennox SLP99V variable-speed gas furnace (available at Lennox) can operate quietly while running at up to 98.7 percent efficiency.
In 1895, long before Lennox became an international organization, the company started as a small machine repair shop in Marshalltown, Iowa. The founder, Dave Lennox, saw the potential in a new furnace design and invested in the patent. He then founded the Lennox Furnace Company later the same year and set to work improving the furnace design, leading to numerous advancements in heating and cooling systems.
Lennox has over a century of experience in the heating and cooling business, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that Lennox products are reliable and effective. This innovative company also dedicates a substantial amount of effort towards developing new improvements to its furnaces, including impressive efficiency rates, noise-reducing insulation, and variable capacity motors.
Known for: Trane gas furnaces have been around since the late 1800s, and the company is well known as one of the industry’s top heating and cooling specialists.
Price: $$$ to $$$$
Editors’ Choice: Tested for long-lasting performance and durability, the Trane S9X1 gas furnace (available at Trane) is an excellent investment that is Energy Star qualified with an efficiency rating of up to 96 percent.
Starting back in 1885 as a plumbing and pipe-fitting business, Trane didn’t begin to produce heating and cooling solutions until 1916. About a decade later, Reuben Trane, son of the company founder, James Trane, invented the convector radiator to replace the heavy cast-iron radiators that were popular at the time. This innovation helped establish the company’s reputation and aid in its success over the years. In 1984, American Standard acquired Trane.
Trane’s focus has always been on innovation and reliable technology, so it’s to be expected that the company’s products tend to be durable, efficient, and equipped with cutting-edge features. While the initial price may be a bit steep for some budgets, the investment is worth it in the long run, with fewer repairs and maintenance problems compared to competitors.
Known for: Goodman furnace products feature solid-build quality and a high level of durability. The company also offers several warranty programs to help safeguard the system against any unexpected issues.
Price: $ to $$$
Editors’ Choice: The 60,000 to 120,000 BTU-per-hour heating input and its 98 percent efficiency make this Goodman GCVM97 gas furnace (available at Goodman) a great choice for most homes.
While Goodman was founded in 1975 as a manufacturer of flexible air ducts and plastic blade registers, the founder, Harold V. Goodman, had a goal to produce affordable HVAC equipment for the average household. In 1982, Goodman acquired Janitrol and entered the HVAC manufacturing industry, expanding into gas heating products in 1986.
Goodman is primarily known for producing gas furnaces and other HVAC solutions that are reliable and highly durable. Consumers can expect a good level of quality for an acceptable price when they choose to invest in a Goodman product, but if there is any doubt about the efficacy of the products, Goodman also offers several warranty programs to give customers peace of mind.
Known for: The initial cost may be more than other brands; however, American Standard furnaces typically require fewer repairs and maintenance over time.
Price: $$ to $$$$
Editors’ Choice: Durable and quiet, this American Standard Platinum 95 gas furnace (available at American Standard) significantly surpasses government efficiency standards with a rating of 97.3 percent.
After being founded almost a century ago in 1929, American Standard has gone through several names and owner changes. It was originally formed in a merger between the American Radiator Company and the Standard Sanitary Manufacturing Company, creating the American Radiator and Standard Sanitary Corporation. This incarnation lasted until 1967, when the company was renamed American Standard Corporation.
American Standard acquired the Trane HVAC company, then changed its official name to Trane in 2007 after divesting all but the HVAC portion of the business. The following year, the company was sold to Ingersoll Rand, though both the Trane and American Standard brands are still in operation today.
American Standard furnaces are recognized for their long-lasting effectiveness and efficiency ratings, though the initial cost of the furnace may be too high for those with strict budgetary limits. Investors in an American Standard furnace will receive high-quality heating with a reduced risk of maintenance problems and repairs.
Known For: Owned by Goodman, the Amana brand produces reliable furnaces for the home, as well as heat pumps and air conditioners for a complete heating and cooling system installation.
Price: $ – $$$
Editors’ Choice: The quiet variable-speed motor and impressive 98 percent efficiency rating of this Amana AMVM97 gas furnace (available at Amana) are more than enough to satisfy government energy use regulations and reduce monthly heating bills.
Despite starting as a commercial walk-in cooler manufacturer back in 1934, Amana slowly shifted to incorporate a wide range of products, including HVAC systems. However, when Goodman purchased Amana in 1997, it only retained the HVAC portion of the business, while the home appliances side of the company was sold to Maytag. So, while they may have the same brand name, Amana furnaces and air conditioners are actually made by a different company than Amana kitchen appliances, like stoves, microwaves, and refrigerators.
Amana’s products have remained relatively consistent over the years with a focus on reliability and total product offerings, ensuring consumers don’t need to source HVAC equipment from multiple manufacturers. Amana furnaces are an affordable option that won’t hit the wallet as hard as American Standard or Trane furnaces, allowing users to upgrade their systems for a lower price.
Known for: Bryant is the furnace brand to turn to if the goal is to install a furnace with a very high-efficiency rating.
Price: $$ to $$$$
Editors’ Choice: With the Bryant Evolution 98 gas furnace (available at Bryant), users get up to 98.3 percent fuel efficiency, and the unit boasts a hybrid heat system that can operate a combined gas furnace and heat pump configuration.
The Bryant brand is named after the founder, Charles Bryant. He started the company over a century ago, in 1904, investing in reliable innovations and quality materials to build the Bryant name and expand the company’s product offerings over the years. The long operation of the Bryant brand has given the company a great reputation with professionals, and consumers can expect a high level of knowledge from Bryant employees when trying to decide on the best furnace for their home.
Bryant offers a wide variety of HVAC products, expanding to include air conditioners, boilers, ductless systems, and geothermal heat pumps, so consumers can choose the specific setup they want for their home. Bryant furnaces are known for their high-efficiency ratings and innovative integration systems, like the Bryant Hybrid Heat system that allows the heating and cooling configuration of the home to include both a gas furnace and a heat pump.
Known for: Carrier is a top-rated furnace brand well known among professionals for manufacturing long-lasting heating and cooling equipment for the home.
Price: $$ to $$$
Editors’ Choice: The Carrier Energy Star–certified Infinity 98 gas furnace (available at Carrier) provides users with long-lasting heat and fuel efficiency of up to 98.5 percent.
Currently based in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, Carrier was established as the namesake brand of Willis Carrier over a century ago in 1915. He started the independent manufacturing and distribution company in Syracuse, New York, to produce heating, ventilating, and air conditioning systems, though Carrier has since expanded the product offerings to include commercial refrigeration, food service equipment, and fire and security products.
The top-quality Carrier furnaces aren’t cheap, but they are more affordable than some premium brands, so consumers can achieve the same level of quality for a reduced price. These long-lasting furnaces range from low-efficiency units with an 80 percent fuel efficiency to high-efficiency systems that can exceed 98 percent efficiency, giving users a range of performance and price options to suit their needs.
Known for: Although Rheem is best known for their boilers and hot water heaters, they also offer top-quality furnaces.
Price: $$ to $$$
Editors’ Choice: The Rheem Classic Plus Series gas furnace (available at Rheem) is ideal for residents of California due to the clean furnace emissions that allow it to pass the SCAQMD Rule 1111, demonstrating the low level of nitrogen oxide produced and released by the unit.
Founded by brothers Richard and Donald Rheem in 1930, when they bought out Pacific Galvanizing, Rheem didn’t actually begin manufacturing heating systems for the home until 1956. Before this period, the company was known as the largest manufacturer of automatic water heaters in the United States, though it slowed production during World War II to focus efforts on wartime products. With the success of its home heating systems, Rheem decided to purchase the Ruud brand in 1960 and has used both brands ever since to manufacture top-quality furnaces.
Rheem furnaces are a reliable option with a moderate price, making them a popular choice for families who want high-quality features but lack the budget for a premium product. While these furnaces are built to last, they are also made with an environmentally conscious mindset, ensuring high efficiency and low emissions.
Known for: Ruud furnaces and heating units are recognized for being long-lasting, durable, and high quality.
Price: $$ to $$$
Editors’ Choice: The Ruud EcoNet Ultra Series gas furnace (available at Ruud) can both heat and protect the home due to its blocked drain sensor that will automatically turn off the furnace if it detects a blockage to prevent spillage and avoid potential water damage.
Edwin Ruud founded the Ruud Manufacturing Company in 1897 to produce automatic water heaters, and then Rheem bought the company in 1960. Since that time, the brand has continued to operate with the goal of producing quality furnaces, air conditioners, hot water heaters, and other HVAC equipment.
Consumers interested in Ruud furnaces can rely on the brand’s nearly 125 years of experience in the HVAC business producing durable units that last for a long time with minimal repairs. While this doesn’t mean the furnaces are maintenance-free, it is a sign of a high-quality product that reliably provides heat to the home in frigid winter conditions.
Known for: Heil furnaces have more advanced features and a range of price points, from budget-friendly models to high-end furnace home heating units.
Price: $ to $$$
Editors’ Choice: The variable-speed motor, 98 percent efficiency rating, and WiFi-enabled remote access through the Ion System Control are just a few prominent features of the impressive Heil Ion 98 gas furnace (available at Heil).
Founded in 1929 as an HVAC manufacturer and distributor, Heil supplied products to Sears until 1957 when the two companies partnered to purchase the Florence Stove Company’s line of Quaker space heaters and a Lewisburg, Tennessee, manufacturing plant. Sears decided to sell the new Heil-Quaker company to Whirlpool in 1964, and the company was purchased again in 1986 by the current owner, International Comfort Products, though, at the time, it was known as the Inter-City Gas Corporation.
Despite the ownership changes over the years, the Heil brand continues to produce high-quality yet affordable HVAC equipment. However, the company also offers premium products with a wide range of features, including WiFi-enabled access and hybrid heating systems for both furnaces and heat pumps, along with high-efficiency ratings to help reduce heating costs.