Coleman Gas Furnaces: Comforteer vs Echelon Series
Coleman produces two main lines of gas furnaces: the Comforteer and Echelon Series. These divisions run through most of Coleman’s heating, ventilation and air conditioner business. Typically speaking the Echelon Series features more expensive, but superior energy efficiency while the Comforteer Series strives for economic value and solid design. Do these principles persist when it comes to Coleman’s gas furnace models?
The most important measure of a gas furnace is Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency or AFUE. The Comforteer and Echelon AFUE percentage varies from unit to unit, but both feature models that get the best AFUE, 95%, and both feature models at the low end of the spectrum, 80%. AFUE is very valuable in terms of saving on your energy bill, qualifying for Energy Star tax credits, and also for taking advantage of the Federal tax credit specifically for 95% AFUE gas furnaces. As both lines offer models that reach 95% AFUE, then they are a wash in this regard.
Since we can’t make the decision based on AFUE we have to look to options. As usual, the Echelon Series gets more bells-and-whistles. They have a modulating feature to provide what Coleman calls an ‘optimum heating level’ and EcoTrak, a technology that adjust for things like too much or too little humidity. Echelon has the edge here, but, of course, Echelon Series Gas Furnaces are also more expensive.
Which is better? If you are looking for straight value, then a Comforteer with 95% AFUE is probably the best bang for your buck. If, however, you don’t mind paying a bit more then you can get the same efficiency from an Echelon with a lot more added features. As always, decide what is more important for you and choose accordingly.