Whenever I tried to weigh up Ruud vs Rheem HVAC systems, I got a similar result. My side-by-side comparisons of their products often resembled each other as they revealed that both brands offer equally efficient units with outputs ranging from 9,000 BTU up to 60,000 BTU.
These HVAC system manufacturers make units suitable for spaces of all sizes. Despite this, selecting a unit that fits the space I want to heat or cool was never easy. In the end, it is usually the details that influence my decision to choose one brand over the other.
In this article, I’ll share my experiences with these brands with you and go through the key characteristics of Rheem’s and Ruud’s products. Hopefully, doing so will help you understand how these two brands are different.
Bottom Line Up Front
I think Ruud and Rheem produce HVAC systems that meet the highest industry standards. Each brand offers reliable and efficient units that deliver equally impressive performances during the hottest and coldest months of the year.
Rheem is perhaps a quieter option because its models are based on double-coil systems that generate less noise than conventional cased and uncased systems you can find on Ruud’s products. On the other hand, Ruud’s units are sturdier and slightly less prone to corrosion.
Main Differences Between Ruud vs Rheem HVAC systems
The main differences between Rheem and Ruud HVAC systems are:
- Rheem’s units have double-coil systems, whereas Ruud equips its HVAC systems with different coils
- Ruud releases its high-end models within the Ultra series, whereas Rheem publishes its best-performing units within the Prestige series
- Rheem HVAC systems aren’t always resistant to the elements, whereas Ruud’s models have a durable construction that is unaffected by snow, rain, or sun exposure.
- Ruud delivers its products quickly, whereas you may have to wait for a Rheem HVAC system to be delivered and installed in your home.
|Efficiency ratings||High to medium||High to medium|
|Refrigerant types||R-410a, R-134a||R-410a, R-134a|
|Indoor unit mounting options||Wall, low wall, ceiling||Wall, low wall, ceiling|
|Estimated life expectancy||Up to 15 years||Up to 20 years|
|Length of the warranty period||Limited lifetime warranty for outdoor units and 10 year warranty for all other system parts||10 to 20 years|
|Latest prices||Check the latest prices here||Check the latest prices here|
Evaluating the Features of Rheem and Ruud HVAC Systems
One of the first HVAC systems I ever used was made by Rheem. Years later, I still praise this unit for its efficiency and longevity. The Rheem Manufacturing Company produces some of the best residential medium-efficiency units in the industry.
Its product line is split into six series, so you can choose models from the Classic, Select, and Prestige series, among others. The company’s HVAC systems aren’t considered highly energy-efficient, but even so, most models are equipped with various power-saving features.
All units utilize double-coils that ensure their noise level won’t interrupt your daily activities. Moreover, Rheem offers excellent warranty conditions that protect the outdoor compressor throughout its lifetime, while the rest of its systems are covered by ten-year warranties.
Like all industry-leading brands, Rheem has a vast network of licensed technicians, so finding a contractor in your area shouldn’t take long.
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- Some units are EcoNet enabled
- Most models have SEER ratings below 20
- Double-coil systems reduce the noise levels of Rheem’s HVAC products
- The brand offers a wide range of gas and electric heat pump models
- Rheem mini-splits can have high cooling outputs
- All furnace models have AFUE ratings above 80%
- Finding replacement parts for Rheem HVAC systems is easy
- The company offers excellent warranty coverage
HVAC System Types
Going through Rheem’s entire product line can take a lot of time because the brand produces all types of HVAC systems. Units are published within different series that indicate their performance capabilities, so a model from a Prestige series will have more features than those released within the Classic series.
In my experience, learning the basics about different HVAC system types can be very useful when deciding which system is the right fit for your home.
- Heat pumps and air conditioners – The only real difference between the heat pumps and air conditioners is the heating function. Also, some of Rheem’s models have the EcoNet enhancement that allows the user to control the system remotely.
- Furnaces – What I like about Rheem furnaces is the versatility of options. Most models are highly efficient and equipped with powerful self-diagnostics features.
- Mini-split systems – All models are available in sizes ranging from 9,000 BTU to 42,000 BTU, and you can choose from single-zone and multi-zone options.
Outputs and Coverage Range of Rheem HVAC Systems
The size of the space where you want to install a Rheem unit is as important as the unit’s features. However, knowing which HVAC system’s size is the right option for your home or garden shed can be difficult.
Even though I know that a 9,000 BTU can’t heat a 1,000sq/ft space, I prefer to bring in a licensed contractor early in the selection process because it helps me select the best option for the area I want to heat or cool.
Rheem’s HVAC systems are available in all conventional sizes, and you can choose from models with outputs under one ton or higher than five tons. Their maximum coverage range varies from a few hundred to thousands of square meters, so having a professional suggest the correct model is often the safest option.
Related read: How to find the best 5-ton heat pump
Efficiency and Power Draw
I don’t think Rheem HVAC systems are the most efficient on the market, but they also don’t draw excessive amounts of power. Most models have SEER ratings in the 16 to 20 range, which indicates that their power-saving potential isn’t insignificant.
Their power consumption increases with size, so 9,000 BTU units use less electricity than 60,000 BTU models. These HVAC systems draw between one and five kW per hour, and their monthly power consumption exceeds half of the average household’s monthly power consumption.
I think that the HSPF ratings of Rheem heat pump models are underwhelming, as only a handful of models have high HSPF ratings. On the other hand, the brand offers a broad spectrum of highly efficient furnaces that don’t burn high quantities of fuel during the heating season.
Dependability of Rheem HVAC Systems
How long your Rheem unit is going to last doesn’t depend solely on the quality of its components. I noticed that the brand’s outdoor components tend to rust and wear out quicker than those produced by other brands.
However, the unit’s longevity also depends on how well it is maintained. Cleaning and replacing air filters regularly, ensuring the condensate is adequately drained, or hiring a technician to manually inspect your system are among the things that keep your Rheem unit in perfect condition for a long time.
The company offers a ten-year warranty for all parts of their HVAC systems and a limited lifetime warranty for key components like the outdoor compressor. Still, I recommend going through the model’s warranty details in order to understand its coverage.
Ruud brand had a long history of success before becoming part of the Rheem Manufacturing Company in 1960. Two brands have been at the forefront of technical innovation for more than sixty years while steadily improving the efficiency of their products.
Rheem and Ruud HVAC systems are almost the same, and most experts say that getting a unit from one brand or the other doesn’t make any difference. Furnaces, mini-splits, or heat pumps these brands offer are similarly priced, so neither option is more affordable than the other.
All HVAC options are famous for their reliability and excellent performance capabilities, but their energy efficiency is at the same level as the efficiency of Rheem’s models. Ruud’s HVAC systems have longer lifespans than those offered by the Rheem brand, as they can last for thirty years.
Want to learn more about Mini-Splits? Continue reading this guide.
- High-quality construction
- All models meet the highest industry standards
- Some units are equipped with the EcoNet technology
- The company releases all its products in different series
- The full warranty is only available after online registration on the manufacturer’s website
- Ruud offers a variety of fuel-efficient furnaces
- Some Ruud’s units are Energy Star certified
HVAC System Types
You can expect to find the same cooling and heating solution at a Rheem or Ruud store. The product lines of these two brands are almost identical, and you can choose from a wide array of air conditioners, furnaces, heat pumps, and mini-splits.
All products are released within the Ultra, Achiever, or Choice series. So a model from the Ultra series is a better option if you need a high-performance heat pump or AC, while you should consider getting a Choice series unit if you need an entry-level unit.
Ruud’s selection of single-zone and multi-zone mini-split models isn’t impressive. Still, each unit is available in different sizes, and you can get a 9,000 BTU or a 36,000 BTU version of the same mini-split system.
Ruud manufactures gas and oil furnaces, but the brand’s selection of oil-powered units is limited to just two models.
Outputs and Coverage Range of Ruud HVAC Systems
You should approach the unit size selection process in the same way regardless of the brand you’re interested in. All Rheem and Ruud produce HVAC systems that can have high or low BTU outputs, which means their coverage range varies from a single room to an entire multistoried house.
As I pointed out, the HVAC system size you choose needs to be suitable for the space where it will be installed. Otherwise, the unit will struggle to reach and maintain the room temperature at the same level while spending a vast amount of power.
You should also remember that the quality of insulation or ceiling height can affect a Ruud HVAC system’s coverage range. That’s why I don’t think going through the selection process alone is a good idea, as you can easily end up with a unit that is too big or too small.
Efficiency and Power Draw
Your heating and cooling costs will be the same if you opt for a Ruud or Rheem HVAC system. Both brands make units that have similar SEER ratings, so most Ruud heat pumps, air conditioners, and mini-splits have SEER 16 through 20 efficiency ratings.
This rating only indicates their maximum efficiency, but the unit’s efficiency level could decrease under unfavorable weather conditions.
Moreover, their hourly and monthly power consumption depends on their size, so you may have to spend close to 50kW of electricity to keep a three or four-ton unit running for eight hours.
Ruud furnaces can AFUE ratings up to 97%, but you should keep in mind that the brand’s high-efficiency models can be expensive. Also, checking how much fuel the model you’re interested in needs to run for 24 hours is advisable.
Dependability of Ruud Systems
The sturdy construction of its outdoor components and good quality of all system parts makes Ruud a more durable option than Rheem. Some Ruud models can remain functional for three decades, but this information can be misleading because their efficiency slowly decreases with age.
In my experience, Ruud’s HVAC systems don’t break down often and rarely require major repairs. All parts of these systems come with five-year warranty protection, and you can replace them for free if they break down during this period.
The company also offers a ten-year warranty for outdoor compressors and coils, but you must register the unit on the manufacturer’s website to obtain this warranty.
Ruud vs Rheem – Pros and Cons
- Excellent selection of medium-efficiency models
- Ruud brand offers products suitable for all climates
- The company has a network of skilled contractors
- Most HVAC system models are readily available
- Ruud isn’t the best option if you need an oil furnace
- The parts warranty lasts for five years
- The brand offers a variety of models with 16 to 20 SEER ratings
- Rheem HVAC systems don’t make a lot of noise
- All models come with an excellent warranty
- Each product line offers a wide selection of models
- Installation costs can be high
- Some system components wear out quickly
The Best Alternatives to Rheem and Ruud HVAC Systems
I took the time to become familiar with all reputable HVAC industry brands when I was choosing my first HVAC system. I suggest you do the same if you have never owned a heat pump or air conditioner.
The list of these brands isn’t long, since only several brands manufacture almost all of the best HVAC systems on the market. I’ve shortlisted a few AC, heat pump, mini-split, and furnace manufacturers that might attract your attention, so let’s take a closer look at them.
Besides the standard HVAC systems, Bryant also manufactures packaged, dual fuel, and geothermal systems. Its selection of residential models includes units with low and high outputs, which makes finding a suitable unit for a home slightly easier.
Some of the brand’s models have smart features, but you’ll also have to get an appropriate thermostat to control them, which increases their cost. Bryant isn’t known as a luxury brand, but some products can cost more than $10,000.
Daikin has been one of the best HVAC system manufacturers in the world for more than half a century. Its air conditioners and heat pumps are famous for their efficiencies and longevity. Brand’s units don’t break down often and can remain fully operational for over two decades.
In addition, all Daikin’s products have long warranty periods, so you don’t have to spend a lot of money on repairing them. Some models make a lot of noise, so you should consider other options if you live in a densely populated area.
Yet another industry giant with a long history in the HVAC industry, the Lennox brand has a long list of high-efficiency units suitable for all residential contexts. Brand’s high-end heat pump units have 24 SEER ratings, which makes them more efficient than Rheem or Ruud models.
Lennox’s air conditioners, mini-splits, and furnaces also have high-efficiency ratings, although some models can draw more power or consume more fuel in extremely warm or cold conditions.
See how Lennox compares to other competitive brands:
Frequently Asked Questions about Ruud and Rheem HVAC Systems
Question: Can I purchase a Rheem HVAC system online?
Answer: Buying one of the company’s HVAC systems through their website isn’t possible, and you have to contact a local contractor to inquire about the prices of specific models.
Question: How long does it take to install a Ruud HVAC system?
Answer: The installation process usually takes two to six hours, but installing a multi-zone system can take a few days.
Question: Do I have to cover my Rheem air conditioner during winter?
Answer: Covering the unit’s outdoor compressor whenever you’re not using it will protect it from potential damage.
I think the differences between Rheem and Ruud products are miniscule and that both options are equally good. Rheem’s unique dual-coil design makes it a better option for homeowners in need of a unit that isn’t going to make a lot of noise.
Ruud HVAC systems are louder, but their construction is more durable, so you should consider getting one of the brand’s heat pumps or air conditioners if you’re looking for a long-term cooling and heating solution for your home.
Even though I understand that determining if the Rheem brand is better than Ruud is nearly impossible, I still hope this article provided you with the information you needed to decide which HVAC system manufacturer is the better option.
Please continue reading our guide on how to find the best furnace for more information about how these systems work.