Heat pumps are a great way to optimize your home climate control. With year-round heating and cooling, a heat pump is more efficient than a central AC and more effective than portable heaters and portable air conditioners.
If you want to know the details of how heat pumps work, we wrote an entire article dedicated to exactly that. However, essentially, they have a bi-directional pump that moves hot air from one place and puts it in the other. In cooling mode, it removes heat from the home, and in heating mode, it adds heat.
This article is focused on the Bryant brand of heat pumps. We cover everything you need to know to decide if a heat pump is right for you and if Bryant is the brand with the heat pump models you need.
Introducing Bryant Heat Pumps
With well over two dozen HVAC companies and each one producing 6 to 20 (or more) different heat pump models, you have a lot to choose from.
This can also make it challenging to decide. Bryant offers quite a few models (almost a dozen different options), and each one is better than the one before. Bryant also offers some of the quietest operating heat pumps on the market, extremely high efficiency, and low maintenance options.
With over a century of experience, the company founded by Charles Bryant is still innovative and daring in their designs as they were when founded. If you are wondering who makes Bryant heat pumps, the answer is Bryant. However, they are a part of the Carrier Corporation side of United Technologies Group.
Bryant heat pumps are not only suitable, they are great. The durability, longevity, and high efficiency are easy answers to the “are Bryant heat pumps any good” questions out there. While they aren’t the cheapest options, they are among the most reliable and versatile on the market.
Understanding Heat Pump SEER Ratings
The Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) is a rating system designed to show you, numerically, the energy efficiency of the unit over a certain period of time. The ratio number represents how efficient the model is, and higher numbers mean higher efficiency.
For heat pumps, anything above 16 SEER is good. However, the capacities of heat pumps and their technologies make 16 to 18 SEER models “low end.” 18 to 20 SEER is considered great, and, of course, 21 SEER and higher is excellent.
For a more thorough description and understanding of SEER, you can read our dedicated SEER article here.
Another rating to note is the measurement of the size capacity of the unit. Known as tonnage, the ton is a simplified rate for the BTU output of a heat pump. 12,000 BTUs is one ton. Most heat pumps range between 1 ton and 5 tons (in half-ton increments). This equates to 12,000 to 60,000 BTUs (or 6,000 BTUs per half-ton).
The tonnage will directly correlate to the size of the home or room you are using the heat pump to heat and cool. On average, you want at least 20 BTUs per square foot. This means 1 ton to 1.5 tons is ideal for smaller homes up to 900 square feet. 2.5 to 3 tons work best for average home sizes between 1200 and 2000 square feet.
Bryant Heat Pump Range (Side By Side Comparison)
Bryant makes 11 total heat pump models. Each can be found in one of three lineups. The Evolution series is the most advanced series from Bryant, followed by the Preferred series and finally the budget-friendly, entry-level Legacy series.
The chart below shows you all of the models, their series, and all the information you need to know about them. This includes the SEER and HSPF ratings, tonnage and home sizes, as well as cost for the units and installation.
Note that costs are based on the average installation and unit costs of a 2.5 ton heat pump.
|Heat Pump Model||Range||SEER||Ton||Home Size||Compressor Type||HSPF||Cost (Unit Only)||Cost + Install|
|Bryant 284ANV||Evolution||24||2 – 5 ||1200 – 3200 sq. ft.||Variable Speed||13||$4500||$10500|
|Bryant 288BNV||Evolution||19||2 – 4||1200 – 3000 sq. ft.||Variable Speed||11||$3800||$9100|
|Bryant 286BNC||Evolution||17||2 – 4||1200 – 3000 sq. ft.||Two-Stage||9.5||$3600||$7800|
|Bryant 286B||Evolution||17||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Two-Stage||9.5||$2800||$7500|
|Bryant 226A||Preferred||17||2 – 5||1200 – 3200 sq. ft.||Two-Stage||9.5||$2700||$7400|
|Bryant 225B||Preferred||16||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Single-Stage||9.0||$2500||$7000|
|Bryant 226C||Preferred||17||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Single-Stage||9.5||$2400||$6700|
|Bryant 224ANS||Preferred||14||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Single-Stage||8.2||$2350||$6700|
|Bryant 215B||Legacy||15||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Single-Stage||8.5||$2100||$5500|
|Bryant 214DNC||Legacy||14||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Single-Stage||8.2||$1950||$5300|
|Bryant 214D||Legacy||14||1.5 – 5||900 – 3200 sq. ft.||Single-Stage||8.2||$1800||$5050|
Bryant Heat Pump Reviews
Bryant heat pumps come in 11 different models. Each one is designed with a specific purpose in mind. All 11 models fit into three categories: the Evolution series, Preferred series, or the Legacy series. Let’s take a closer look at all three series’ and their respective models.
Bryant® Evolution System Heat pumps
The Evolution series offers the highest SEER ratings, best HSPF ratio, and is the only lineup to offer variable speed compressors. The top-end models are also the quietest offered by Bryant, with an average high-speed noise level of about 55dB.
The best of the best is the Extreme 24 (model 284ANV). It offers a brand high 24 SEER and 13 HSPF rating. Not only do all Evolution models qualify for the tax credit, but they are also fairly simple to install, keeping those costs lower than they could be.
You also have the 288BNV, which only recently was uprooted from the top spot. This variable speed model reaches 19 SEER, and the 5-speed variable compressor not only saves money on energy bills but also slightly on install costs.
The final two models in the series are nearly identical. The only difference between the 286B and 286BNC is that the NC model is specially treated to prevent corrosion when installed near the coast. Otherwise, both models are fairly quiet (about 59dB) with 17 SEER and 9.5 HSPF capabilities.
The most efficient line is also the most expensive, but the cost savings you get in return are worth considering.
Bryant® Preferred Series Heat Pumps
The Bryant Preferred series is the series that balances cost and performance. Notably less costly than the Evolution series, you also get a slight dip in performance. However, for most homeowners, you won’t notice.
The top of this series, the 226A model, reaches 17 SEER and produces only 62dB of noise. With a two-stage compressor, it is also more efficient when it is running as well as lowering the amount of energy needed to kick on.
While the Preferred series doesn’t operate well below 20 degrees, it is still ideal for most regions and locations for year-round use. All other models in the Preferred series use Bryant’s high powered single-stage compressor.
There are three other models, each one slightly different. The 225B model is the more affordable of the group with a single-stage compressor and up to 16 SEER rating. It is also one of the loudest models in the series, with noise levels reaching near 70dB at high speed.
The 226C is also efficient, with 17 SEER and 9.5 HSPF ratings; it is comparable to the lower end of the Evolution series. The install costs are much lower, though, making it more sought after by those on tighter budgets.
Finally, there is the low profile model. The 224ANS is a compact model ideal for smaller homes, tighter installation areas, or multi-family housing situations. You still get a decent 14 SEER and 8.2 HSPF ratings, but this may not be legal to install in the Southwest, which requires high SEER models.
Bryant® Legacy Line Heat Pumps
The last series is the budget-friendly models. All three models in the Legacy series are cost-effective, easy to install, and offer low maintenance.
The 215B model is the most efficient of the group reach up to 15 SEER, making it viable for install in any region. It also offers a single-stage compressor, as do all of the models here, but with that higher-powered compressor, you also get a more efficient unit.
Most brands have a drastic drop in efficiency when using a single-stage compressor. Bryant can keep efficiency at a maximum, making their models a little more popular among those without a brand preference.
The other two models, once again, are near identical. The 214D and 214DNC are only separated by the NC models coastal protection from saltwater and salt air. The extra layer of durability has no real use if you are beyond 15 to 20 miles from the coast, but inside that range, you will find that the coastal model lasts much longer.
The warranty here is dependent on registration, but when registered, you get a 10-year parts warranty, and the coastal model has a 5-year warranty against corrosion.
Choosing The Right Heat Pump For Your Home
Before you pull out your wallet and buy the next heat pump you see, you need to take a minute and consider everything. Below, you will find the more important factors that will help you narrow down your choices and find the ideal heat pump for your home.
One of the first decisions is to pick a brand. Each brand makes quality heat pumps, but unless you select a specific brand, you have too many options. You want a brand that offers reliability, durability, and above all, customer support.
Off-brands and smaller brands may offer a great deal, but if they won’t be around in five years when you need them, it isn’t a great deal overall. Bryant has been around for 100 years already, and with the support of the Carrier Group, they will be around for 100 more.
Home And Heat Pump Size
One of the most important factors is the size of your home. Smaller homes actually have a more difficult time finding the right heat pump. If your home is less than 1000 square feet, you will need a heat pump at or below 1.5 tons.
Many brands don’t have heat pump options below 2 tons for their higher-end, more advanced units. Likewise, large homes may find that the unit cost (see below) becomes an issue. If your home is larger than 3200 square feet, you may need multiple heat pumps to be effective.
Higher-end models at large sizes are already more expensive, and if you need to buy two or more, that can really stretch your budget.
Noise is a factor in any piece of machinery. Heat pumps aren’t known to be extremely loud and are usually much quieter than a central air conditioner unit. However, heat pumps aren’t always whisper-quiet.
Noise is measured in decibels (dB), and this is a metered scale. On average, a heat pump will fall between 50 and 70dB, which is similar to a hairdryer on high or city traffic. Anything below 50dB is considered quiet.
As a comparison, 45dB is about the same as a normal talking conversation in a quiet room. Many high-end models will produce between 42 and 55dB when on high, making them relatively quiet.
Ease Of Installation
When it comes to installation, professional HVAC technicians are highly recommended. A DIY install is not only difficult but can potentially be illegal. When working with refrigerants, you must be EPA 608 certified.
However, just because you have someone else performing the installation doesn’t mean you need not worry about how easy the machine installs. Easier installations go faster, and faster means less cost to you.
That being said, there are many benefits to professional installation, which we cover further below. Just keep in mind that larger units, odd mounting angles, and difficult-to-access install locations will add to the complexity and cost of the install.
When it comes to technology, not even HVAC equipment is exempt. When shopping for a new heat pump, you want to ensure you get all the features you need but doing so while keeping costs down.
Some of the more prominent features are variable speed inverter compressors, wireless communications, power control boards, and even noise dampening features. While these features aren’t required, they are beneficial.
A variable-speed compressor, for example, will be more efficient, require less electricity. Wireless communications to the air handler and thermostats mean less installation time and fewer wires running to or from the unit. While these features and others like them add to the cost, they can save you money in the long run or during installation, making them worth it.
Heat Pump Cost & Warranty
Finally, you need to be concerned about the price. Depending on your budget, things can get out of hand quickly if you aren’t careful. Not only is the unit cost a concern, but so is installation, repairs, and maintenance.
Many brands offer models in various budget ranges. However, top-end models can reach prices over $2500, with some brands even exceeding $4000. When you add labor costs (which can range up to $8000 or more) for the install, a high-end, top-of-the-range model can easily exceed $10,000 total cost.
The warranty is also important. With brands ranging from 1-year coverage to lifetime, it is crucial to know what you are getting. It is also wise to fully understand what is needed on your part. For example, some warranties require registration, professional installation, or even both.
Understanding your budget, the warranty, and what is required on your part beyond brand and model selection will be the most critical portion of your decision-making process.
Calculating Power Consumption & Running Costs
Your heat pump’s power consumption is the number of watts that it takes to run the system. On most models, you can look at the ID plate and see the watts listed. If they are not listed, you can take the volts and amps listed and multiply them together, giving you the watts.
Once you have the watts, diving them by 1000 will give you the kilowatts of the unit. For example, if you have a 3500 watt system, it is 3.5 kilowatts. You can then look at your electric bill to find out how much you pay per kilowatt-hour. Putting the two together will tell you how much the unit costs when it runs.
This is different than the running costs, though. Power consumption tells you how much electricity it takes (and that cost to you) when the system starts up. Running cost is how much the system costs you over time while running.
To find the running cost, you need the kilowatts and cost per kilowatt-hour, which you found from the power consumption above. You also need to know how many hours per day the system is actually running.
The average during high use times (summer and winter) is between 4 and 6 hours per day. Finally, you need to know how many days you want to know the running costs for. Most people use 90 days to cover the summer or winter months.
The formula, then, will take all four variables and multiplies them together. It looks like: kilowatts x cost per kilowatt x hours running x total days run.
If we take our test variables of 3.5 kilowatts, an average cost of 13 cents per kilowatt-hour, running 4 hours per day for 90 days, the formula then looks like this: 3.5 x $0.13 x 4 x 90 = $163.80.
Heat Pumps Vs. Other Heat Pump Brands
Bryant is a major player in the HVAC industry, and it stands to reason that they offer excellent heat pumps. But, how do their products stack up against some other big and popular brands? We compare Bryant to American Standard, Goodman, and Trane to find out.
Bryant Vs. American Standard Heat Pump
American Standard is a name that is well known around the country with decades of sales and installs of various HVAC equipment. Not only are their heat pumps affordable and reliable, but they are also durable and low maintenance.
Compared to Bryant, though, there are fewer models and lower SEER ratings. Bryant heat pumps are more expensive and have more technological features. While Bryant does cost more (both unit cost and install costs), they tend to last longer.
American Standard heat pumps have a loyal and devoted following and for good reason. The affordable rates make them popular, but the efficient heat pumps offer cheap repairs, low maintenance, and lasts long enough to make the cost worth it.
Still, when compared to Bryant, American Standard doesn’t equal the competition. This, of course, doesn’t mean American Standard is sub-par, but they aren’t as overly durable or advanced as Bryant models.
Bryant Vs. Goodman Heat Pump
Aside from Carrier, Goodman may be the most recognizable name in the HVAC industry. Goodman heat pumps come from a long line of reliable, affordable, and low maintenance products. Technically, Goodman is considered a mid-range manufacturer. Their products are not bad, but they are not top of the line, either.
Where Bryant separates from Goodman is in their premium builds. They are more expensive across the board, but you get durability and solid construction seldom found in heat pumps. Goodman, on the other hand, uses high-quality parts and is durable enough to offer one of the few lifetime compressor warranties in the industry.
If you are looking to save money on unit and installation costs, Goodman is as reliable as they come. You won’t get exciting features like a 2-wire install or ultra-quiet operation. Their newest model is only 20 SEER (first 20+ SEER Goodman model ever). But you also don’t get the Bryant construction, which can see outside units last 20+ years without issue.
Bryant Vs. Trane Heat Pump
Trane heat pumps, like Bryant, are considered premium. The brand is known for their higher prices, but worth that cost because of the reliability they offer. You will also find a good selection of models, each with features that rival any other brand.
One thing that Trane lacks is the noise reduction techniques that Bryant employs. While Trane does have quiet heat pumps, Bryant is a little bit quieter. If you are curious, Bosch heat pumps are considered the quietest on the market.
Trane also offers a standard warranty, but you probably won’t need it. The durability of their designs means the outside units can withstand any weather and any temperature. They also have the ability to work well in sub-zero temperatures. Bryant works well in cold temps, too, but sub-zero is not as attainable as it is with Trane.
In the end, Trane has a slightly higher cost but a somewhat more advanced system. Neither option is a wrong choice, and you can find a model with the features, ratings, and efficiency you need through both brands fairly easily.
HVAC Tax Credits Explained
In 2018 the federal government issued a tax credit for residential homeowners that installed energy-efficient systems. This tax credit includes heat pumps and offers a flat rate of $300 credit for their purchase and installation. The current deadline is December 31, 2021.
To qualify for the credit, you, your home, and the heat pump must meet a few requirements.
- You must be the homeowner and live in the home (rentals and new construction do not apply).
- The unit must be Energy Star certified.
- For split system heat pumps, they must have a minimum of 15 SEER and 8.5 HSPF ratings.
- For package systems, the minimums are 14 SEER and 8 HSPF ratings.
- The system must be professionally installed before December 31, 2021.
If you meet all of these requirements, you need only fill out tax form 5695 and submit it with your income tax returns. The $300 credit will be applied, and you can enjoy your tax break and high-efficiency system.
Should I Hire A Professional To Install A Heat Pump?
Hiring a professional HVAC contractor to install your heat pump is a wise decision. Yes, there will be labor and materials costs added to the price of your heat pump, but that is the only downside.
In fact, the cost can be offset because of the benefits you do receive, and when something like a highly efficient heat pump ends up paying for itself, there is no downside at all. One of the best benefits, of course, is knowing your system is installed correctly.
This is a condition of the tax credit (which is another free $300 to you). It is also a condition of any warranties. Having your system properly installed also reduced noises, ensuring the mounting, angles and degrees are set correctly.
Further, a professional install means safety. Not only are you safe personally and out of harm’s way should something go wrong, but your equipment and structures are safe, too. HVAC technicians are trained in the installation and mounting procedures and ensure everything is done with proper care.
On top of all that, you are also ensured you get the right unit and model for your needs. When you select the brand and model, the HVAC technician will also measure your home and ensure you receive the correct size. This only adds to the efficiency and overall savings you will see each month.
While a professional installer will set you back a couple of thousand dollars, the level of expertise and efficiency gains will pay that back in a few years, making your system even more efficient and productive in the long run. You can’t lose.
Bryant Troubleshooting Tips & FAQs
In this section of the Bryant heat pump reviews, we will cover some of the common issues that crop up and how to fix them. We also cover some of the more commonly asked questions.
Bryant heat pump fan not working
If the heat pump fan is not working, it is most likely due to a burnt fan motor. While it can also be a burnt power wire or blown fuse, these are easily checked while accessing the fan motor.
Before you start, you always want to turn the power to the system off at the thermostat and the breakers. 220 – 240 volts is not something you want to play with. Once you have powered off and have accessed the fan motor, look for charred or burnt wiring. This is easy to spot as the copper wire may have lost its shielding and have turned black. If this is the case, replace the wires.
If not, you need to remove the fan motor and replace it with a new one. The simple process is time-consuming as most fan motors become stuck on their mounting brackets. Some WD-40 and light tapping with a smooth-faced hammer will have the motor-free in no time, though.
Bryant heat pump not heating or cooling correctly
If you find that the system runs OK but isn’t producing heat or cold air as it should, there are a few things to check. First, you want to look at the thermostat. Ensure it hasn’t accidentally been switched to a different mode or that the fan speed hasn’t been set to “on.” If this happens, just turn the fan back to “auto” and select the correct mode (heat or cooling) for your needs.
If the problem persists, it is time to check the airflow. Locate the air filter and check for clogs, dirt or damage. Replace the filter and see if the problem persists. If it does, you want to check the coils on the outside unit for ice.
If you notice that the outside coils are not iced but are dirty, covered in leaves and debris, clean them off. This will most likely fix the problem. If you do find that the coils are iced over, see the next section or call a professional HVAC repair technician.
Bryant heat pump trips breaker or freezes up
If your heat pump is constantly tripping the breaker, there is most likely something going on that is causing the system to work harder than it should. The easiest to check is airflow. Inspect the vents and air filter for clogs, debris, and damage, cleaning or replacing as needed.
You also want to check the coils for dirt and dust build-up or ice. If it is dirt or debris, you can clean with coils cleaner and restore normal operation. If there is ice, though, it is a sign of a bigger problem.
Ice only forms when two things happen; first, there is inadequate airflow, but since you have already checked the air filters and vents, this is most likely not the issue. Instead, the only other cause is due to low refrigerant levels.
Low refrigerant is a sealed system means a leak. You will need to call an HVAC technician to find the leak, repair the leaking area and refill the refrigerant to proper levels. Unless you hold an EPA 608 certification, this is not something you can do on your own.
Bryant heat pump blower doesn’t run
A bower is simply a mechanical device connected to an electric motor. If the blower isn’t moving, there are only two causes. First, there is something physically blocking the blower and preventing it from spinning. You can check the blower cage for debris which should then be removed.
If there is no debris, the issue is a burnt or blown fan motor. In that case, you can see the section above about the fan motor not working for how to fix it. If you are unsure or don’t want to mess with the high voltage wires, you can always call an HVAC professional for diagnosis and repairs.
How do I reset my Bryant heat pump?
Bryant heat pumps are connected electrically to your home’s circuit breaker. In the event you need to reset your heat pump, you won’t find a reset button or panel switch on the unit. Instead, you will need to perform a manual rest.
First, turn the thermostat to “off.” This will prevent the electrical signal from reaching the pump motor. Next, you will need to locate the circuit breakers that power the system. In most installs, there will be two breakers. Turn the breakers to the off position and wait at least 60 seconds.
It is recommended you wait at least 3 minutes to allow any residual electric charge to dissipate. After the waiting period, turn the breakers back on and restore the system to run mode at the thermostat.
Where can I buy Bryant heat pump replacement parts?
Bryant heat pump replacement parts are found anywhere HVAC equipment is sold. This includes brick and mortar shops like Lowe’s, Home Depot, Menard’s, and others. For the best cost, most savings, and easy part identification, though, you can find what you need online at Amazon and Sylvane.
Bryant heat pumps are premium heat pumps with a higher than average industry cost. However, with that cost, you get reliability, durability, and low maintenance systems. While these models aren’t designed for everyone, many homes around the country find year-round comfort with Bryant.
With low noise levels, high efficiency, and almost every model qualifying for the tax credit, it is easy to see why Bryant is so popular. Hopefully, this Bryant heat pump review has given you the information needed to make an informed decision. If you find that Bryant is not for you, fear not. We have plenty of other models and brands reviewed just for you.
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