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Trane vs Lennox Air Conditioning Reviews & Prices 2021

If you’re planning to buy a new central air conditioner for your home, compare brands before you buy. This is a review of two well-known ones, Trane and Lennox in 2021.

If you’re planning to buy a new central air conditioner for your home, compare brands before you buy. This is a review of two well-known ones, Trane and Lennox in 2021.

Both manufacture very well-known HVAC products that offer a variety of models. Both also offer great features and excellent quality.

So, what’s the difference between them?

First, we’ll outline what Trane vs Lennox air conditioners have in common. Then we’ll compare the differences between Trane vs Lennox air conditioners. This will help you make an informed decision on which is the best bet.

All pictures featured in this review are copyright of these two brands. All rights reserved.

Legacy SL28XCV
Legacy SL28XCV
XV20i
XV20i

What Lennox and Trane Have in Common

These two brands are both HVAC industry air conditioner manufacturers that dominate the market. In general, both produce equipment that ranks in the top 50% of all air conditioning (AC) brands.

It should also go without saying that both need proper installation.

Here are some specific similarities. 

Basic, Better, Best Models for Air Conditioning

Both Trane and Lennox sell air conditioning units that fit into three categories: basic, better, and best.

Lennox calls its series Merit, Elite, and Signature. Trane has one- and two-stage ranges, and superior, variable-speed TruComfort air conditioning models.

Smart WiFi Thermostat

The top models of both manufacturers offer the option of WiFi-connected touchscreen thermostats.

This function will enable you to maintain thermostat settings for longer. It will also enable you to set indoor temperatures to match comfort levels.

You can adjust smart WiFi thermostat settings. This will ensure your air conditioning system uses less energy when you are out or you’re asleep.

ComfortLink II XL 1050
iComfort WiFi touchscreen thermostat

ComfortLink II XL 1050 & iComfort WiFi touchscreen thermostats

High-Quality Compressor

Most models made by both manufacturers have sound-reduction insulation for the compressor.

Air Conditioner Cabinets

Top and mid-range models from both AC brands have louvered down-slanted vents on their cabinets. These protect the coil from accidental damage.

Both have air conditioner cabinets that have a tough powder-coated, baked-on enamel finish.

Eco-Friendly Refrigerant

Both Lennox and Trane air conditioner brands use R-410A refrigerant. It is not a hydrochlorofluorocarbon that depletes the ozone layer of the earth. Both brands have indicated they will use better options as they become available. 

Installation

Both brands are fussy about proper installation.

Lennox insists that one of their premier dealers does the installation. With Trane, only certified people may do the installation.

If you don’t follow these installation requirements, this will impact your warranty.

Trane vs Lennox AC Differences

Lennox Trane
Efficiency: High-end Mid-range Low-end 26 SEER 20 SEER 16 SEER 22 SEER 18 SEER 16 SEER
Features Humidity control Variable fan Smart thermostat Wifi Smart home compatibility Communicating technology Climate IQ Yes iComfort 530, E30, M30 Top models Alexa Top models Comfort-R Yes ComfortLink II Top models Nexia Top models
Coils Aluminum Normal fins Aluminum Proprietary spine fin type
Compressors Copeland scroll type Proprietary Climatuff compressors that vary according to model
Warranty 5 to 10 years 10 to 12 years
Repairs Parts are often difficult to source Can be costly.5
Price More expensive than Trane Higher than average

When we compare these two leading AC brands, there are quite a lot of differences. But none is major. Quality, energy use, and many different features they boast have a lot in common. 

While components and innovations do differ, both brands offer features that will improve your quality of life.

To compare the two brands, we are going to consider energy efficiency, features, fans, thermostats, compressors, coils, prices, and other factors.

Lennox vs Trane Efficiency

I have no doubt you will be looking for an air conditioner that is efficient. A good way to establish energy efficiency is with the seasonal energy efficiency ratio (SEER) rating.

From the table above you will see that the SEER rating of Trane/Lennox low-end air conditioners is the same. But the rating of the high-end and middle-range Lennox air conditioners is higher.

The Lennox brand invests heavily in developing efficient equipment. So it’s no surprise that its standard split-system ACs are more efficient than any other AC brands.

In fact, when it comes to efficiency, Lennox is a leader with all its equipment. This includes their air conditioning units, heat pumps, SunSource PVC solar panels, and power systems.

Lennox vs Trane Features

Both Lennox, Trane, and other brands manufacture basic central air conditioning units. These generally have just a few features, while the top-end units they sell have a whole bunch.

We have included the main features in the table above. You will find some more information about each of them below.

The differences aren’t huge.

Humidity Control

Features designed to control humidity get rid of excess humidity when the weather is warm. This enables us to ensure that our homes are comfortable even when temperatures are higher.

Let’s look at how Trane vs Lennox air conditioners control humidity.

Trane

Conventional AC brands incorporate blowers that operate at 100% capacity all the time.

Trane’s Comfort-R is a method used to improve and enhance airflow. So, the fan runs at slower speeds during start-up. Then you get greater control of humidity during the cooling process.

Comfort-R high-efficiency systems are quieter and they reduce wear and tear. This minimizes future repairs. They work with whole-house control systems, effectively adjusting humidity levels.

Lennox

The Lennox HVAC system Climate IQ allows you to set your thermostat for the day and night temperatures you want.

The technology checks humidity levels and removes moisture from the air. This makes your environment healthier and more comfortable.

Variable Fan

Variable fans fitted in central air conditioner consenting units speed up and slow down to match the output of its variable capacity. The primary advantage is that variable fans are a lot quieter when operating at low capacity.

Both Lennox and Trane air conditioners have variable fans. 

Smart Thermostat

We mentioned above that both Lennox and Trane AC top AC units incorporate smart WiFi thermostats.

Smart thermostats will enable you to monitor and control the air conditioning system in your home. You can do this using an iOS or Android device and app, depending on which capability Trane vs Lennox offers. See the relevant section below.

Trane Thermostats

Trane’s top-of-the-range, high-quality, variable-speed air conditioners incorporate ComfortLink II smart thermostats.

Lennox Thermostats

Lennox has a range of iComfort  smart thermostats including the M30, E30, and the ultra-smart S30.

Lennox AC units that don’t incorporate top-quality iComfort smart thermostats are fitted with a ComfortSense programmable thermostat.

Smart Home Compatibility

Smart thermostats let you integrate your air conditioner with various home automation devices and systems.

The two most common apps are Nexia and Alexa.

All Lennox iComfort thermostats are compatible with Amazon Alexa. This is Amazon Echo’s operating platform. They are also compatible with Google Home and Google Assistant

All Lennox iComfort thermostats are compatible with Amazon Alexa, which is Amazon Echo’s operating platform. They are also compatible with Google Home and Google Assistant.

The ultra-smart S30 and smart E30 thermostats are compatible with the Apple Homekit. This app also provides efficient automation.

WiFi

The top AC unit types from both brands incorporate WiFi thermostats. 

Communicating Technology

Communicating technology was first introduced by Carrier. You may use it for heat pumps, furnaces, air conditioners, and complete HVAC systems. 

Today, more than the three brands mentioned use it. In fact, every major HVAC brand offers communicating systems. 

Generally, the technology may be used with some two-stage HVAC systems and all those that offer variable capacity. Your HVAC contractor will give you more advice. Just be aware that the technology won’t work with single-stage systems. 

Instead of information flowing from the thermostat in one direction to the various system components, communicating  technology lets them share information.

The top models of both the Trane and Lennox brands offer the option of communicating technology.

It will deliver higher efficiency and will optimize indoor climate control. Systems that incorporate communicating technology offer the lowest operating costs of any type of HVAC system, but they will add 20-50% to the initial price tag.

Lennox vs Trane Coils

HVAC systems utilize two coils. One is on the outside of the system in a condensing unit. The second is inside an air handler cabinet or the furnace, or attached to it.

Both HVAC coils have fins that maximize heat transfer.

Coils are either made from aluminum or copper. Some combine aluminum fins for heat transfer and copper tubing for the refrigerant.

Both brands use aluminum for the high- and mid-range models and even some of their low-end models.

Aluminum is considered to be superior because it is highly resistant to corrosion. The HVAC industry believes that copper coils will invariably leak, while aluminum coils might not.

If aluminum coils do leak, they are virtually impossible to repair. This means have to replace them, which adds to the cost.

Lennox Fins

Coils may be either all-aluminum or a combination of copper tubing going to aluminum fins. The company uses normal fins.

Trane Fins

Trane air conditioners incorporate proprietary spine fins. These result in a larger surface area than with traditional coils, which is key to faster cooling.

The fins are definitely a better quality but more difficult to clean.

Lennox vs Trane Compressors

The compressor is the heart of every central air conditioner. Its function is to circulate refrigerant between the indoor coil and the outdoor coil.

The indoor coil is where it picks up heat from the interior and the outdoor coil is where the heat is released.

The type used depends on the type of AC unit and whether it’s single-stage, two-stage, or variable speed.

The main differences between the types used by these two brands are the components they use.

Trane Compressors

Every single- and two-stage AC unit incorporates an exclusive Climatuff design. A Trane-Copeland collaboration makes them. Variable-capacity units also use proprietary compressors

Trane uses the best available parts and only allows certified installers to sell and install the  brand. For this reason, compressors break down less often than some other makes. 

Lennox Compressors

Single- and two-stage  AC units use generic Copeland scroll compressors. Variable types have LG compressors.

One definite benefit is that generic parts are widely available. They are also less expensive than Trane proprietary parts.

Lennox vs Trane Warranties

Those offered on both the Trane and Lennox brand of air conditioner indicate that their products will stand the test of time.

Neither brand offers a warranty on installation or labor. However, proper installation is imperative for warranties to be honored.

Trane Warranties

The warranty on top- and mid-range unit compressors is 12 years and 10 years on parts.

A low-end unit carries a 10-year warranty on both.

Lennox Warranties

The warranty on a top-of-the-range unit compressor and on parts is 10 years.

Middle range units carry a 10-year warranty on the compressor and 5 years on parts.

A low-end unit carries a 5-year warranty on both. This implies a slightly lower quality.

Lennox vs Trane Repairs

Most central air-conditioning units will need repairs within 15 to 20 years, even if they are quite minor. Assuming the unit was properly installed, the bottom line will depend on the availability and cost of parts.

Trane 

If generic parts rather than original equipment manufacturer parts (OEM), repair on units shouldn’t cost more. They might if only OEM parts are available.

Lennox

Most generic parts aren’t suitable for this brand. Products incorporate a lot of OEM parts which can be difficult to source.

Also, the supply chain tends to be slow. 

Lennox vs Trane Price Comparison

There is no doubt that Lennox is more expensive than Trane, even though Trane is also an expensive brand.

Lennox

The company doesn’t advertise prices on its website because there are too many variables. During our research, we found that prices for a specific model could vary by as much as $2,000-$3,000. This depends on location and installation cost.

You will need to get a quotation from a reputable contractor.

Trane

Unlike most brands, The Trane website includes price estimates. They vary from state to state and areas within each state.

In New York City, the price, depending on the model, is currently anything from $4,389 to $15,015.

My Conclusion

When you compare one brand against the other, there is a lot in favor of both Lennox and Trane. Every AC unit both companies produce is worthy in some way or another.

It is essential that both brands are properly installed and you need to know what you want from an air conditioning system. For example, while variable-capacity units are superior to other types, they need to be correctly sized for your home. If they aren’t they won’t be worth the extra spend. 

My advice is to compare brands, just like we have done. Then make up your mind.   

You can find out more about both these and other top AC brands in some of our recent posts, here and here.

And if you want to buy a Trane or Lennox central air conditioner, you can buy Trane here and Lennox here.