Will The Best Central Air Conditioning Brands of 2014 Top The Ratings This Year?
When it’s time to install a new central air conditioning unit some people will get themselves twisted up into knots trying to figure out which brand is ‘the best.’ That’s because most people start their research with the wrong definition of what the ‘best air conditioner brand’ actually means.
Despite what the marketing fluff on the websites of every air conditioning manufacturer says, there is no life-altering difference in the way a new air conditioning unit from one of the top brands will cool your home versus a unit made by one of the other top ac brands. As far as cooling performance goes, the differences in the units produced by the top rated air conditioning manufacturers are so subtle that any objective person would consider them insignificant.
So how can you tell which is the best air conditioner brand if they will all cool your home the same? By paying attention to the one thing that really matters when it comes to central air conditioning units… reliability!
Reliability is the main issue that separates a merely good air conditioner brand from the top rated central air conditioners. Think 5-6 years down the road… how annoying (and expensive) would it be if that new air conditioner you spent over $4,000 to install quit working when the temperature was 95 degrees outside? Let me tell you, it would be very annoying, and very expensive.
That’s why Consumer Reports’ annual ratings of the best central air conditioner brands are based on how reliable each brand proves to be over a 7-year period. So the 2014 ratings were based on findings from 2007 – 2013, and the 2015 ratings will be based on findings from 2008 – 2014. Here’s a look at the top 3 highest rated air conditioner brands in terms of reliability in Consumer Reports most recent survey…
It’s important to note two things that Consumer Reports points out before putting too much emphasis on the ratings. First, differences of fewer than 5 points between the brands aren’t very meaningful. So a new unit from any of the Top 5 air conditioner brands is going to be a good choice as fewer than 5 points separates the top rated ac brand from the 5th best rated brand.
Second, as the editors at Consumer Reports have stated in the past, the most important factor to consider when choosing new heating and air conditioning equipment is finding a company you can trust. Hiring a company you can trust is more important than the brand you choose, the price you pay, or the type of air conditioner you install. None of that stuff matters if you can’t trust the company that installed your air conditioner to take care of you if there is ever a problem.