Grandaire vs. Carrier: Which Air Conditioner Is Better?

When homeowners think of air conditioning, one of the first brands they think of is Carrier.

That’s understandable, considering Carrier has been in the business longer and is ranked as one of the best air conditioning brands in the United States.

Grandaire, made by United Technologies, a subsidiary of Carrier, has also been another top-selling central air conditioner in the U.S.

Although Carrier is well-established and popular on the market in terms of sales, Grandaire has been gaining popularity slowly over the past few years.

If you’re thinking about installing a whole-home air conditioner and can’t decide between these two brands, we answer your questions about Grandaire vs. Carrier.

Let’s dive right in!

What are Grandaire Air Conditioners?

Background of Grandaire Air Conditioners

Grandaire is a US-based HVAC company that produces inexpensive:

  • Package units
  • Condensing units
  • Heat pumps
  • Furnaces
  • Air handlers

Grandaire HVAC units are a part of a more extensive brand network. Watsco manufactures and produces units for Baker Distributing Company. In 2009, Carrier and Watsco reached an agreement to merge.

But, official paperwork indicates that Grandaire is under the United Technologies Corporation. But the actual sales and production are for Watsco and Baker.

The durability and warranties of Grandaire are reputable in line with industry averages. Moreover, Grandaire is an upgrade to older and inefficient air conditioner units.

Grandaire Cost Expectations and Price Comparison

grandaire vs carrier

The united technologies corporation produces great AC qualities. 

When you get an air conditioner from Baker, the installation costs drop. But the unit’s price drop comes about when an HVAC pro installs the AC. Here are the Grandaire unit prices based on model numbers


  • $1590-$1890 exclusive of installation
  • $3590-$3890 inclusive of installation


  • $1650-$1950 exclusive of installation
  • $3650-$3950 inclusive of installation


  • $1780-$2200 exclusive of installation
  • $3780-$4200 inclusive of installation


  • $2180-$2660 exclusive of installation
  • $4180-$4660 inclusive of installation

For more on the Grandaire AC running costs, refer to the price comparison table. On the air conditioner brand’s tax breaks, check the table too.

Grandaire Premium Brand air conditioner models

Here’s a breakdown of Grandaire air conditioner models:

  • 1 and 2 describe the types of air conditioners from the Grandaire brand. While WC represents the condensing unit from Watsco. And WH describes the heat pump from Watsco company.
  • In the same case, number 3 describes the Grandaire air conditioner type. At the same time, A describes the air conditioner.
  • The 4th number describes the air conditioner SEER rating. And that applies in a representation of single numbers
  • The 4th and 5th numbers are numbers based on separate air conditioners. The first two numbers describe the BTU rating, the lowest. While the 2nd number represents the upper BTU rating
  • The 7th number is a 4. Thus, describes the refrigerant R-410a.
  • Either the 8th number or M misses
  • The 9th number describes the air conditioner voltage. While the letter K represents a 208 or 230 voltage
  • The 10th and 11th numbers describe the sales codes
ModelTonnageSeer*Noise Levels**BTU’sCompressor
WCA31.5 – 51370 – 79dB18000 – 60000Single-Stage Scroller
WCA41.5 – 51472 – 75dB18000 – 60000Single-Stage Scroller
WCA51.5 – 51571 – 76dB18000 – 60000Single-Stage Scroller
WCA61.5 – 51669 – 75dB18000 – 60000Single-Stage Scroller

Grandaire Pros and Cons

Grandaire makes quality units, whether from the paint job or packaging. But their air conditioners aren’t different.

They have excellent and ugly sides. So, here are the Grandaire HVAC equipment pros and cons.


  • Affordable air conditioner unit cost
  • Warranty replacement parts
  • Affordable installation cost
  • Easy installation process
  • Suitable for modern upgrades
  • Grandaire’s parent company produces the units for different regions
  • The company has a package unit and a heat pump
  • American standard
  • Programmable thermostat


  • Limited models for their customer base to choose from
  • Low SEER ratings. The Grandaire air conditioners have an average SEER rating of 14.5. But other air conditioners have higher SEER ratings.
  • Higher noise levels
  • Grandaire units aren’t cross-compatible with other AC brand parts.

What is Carrier Air Conditioners?

Background of Carrier Brand

The carrier includes brands like

  • Automated Logic
  • Bryant
  • CIAT
  • Day & Night
  • Heil
  • Riello

ICP’s unitary product lines are a subsidiary of united technologies. But it’s also part of the Carrier operating unit. Moreover, International Comfort Products Corporation produces

  • carrier furnaces. Both oil and gases.
  • Central air conditioning systems. Residential and commercial ones.
  • Heat pumps

Carrier brands from United Technologies cater to every customer. The customer values efficiency, silence, good cooling, or sleek design.

United Technologies has an AC product for you in its several units. And eighteen units. But, unlike other brands, Carrier Bryant is unreliable.

Apart from the flaw, Carrier brands

  • Offer tax rebates
  • And have excellent customer service

But, their Chinese parts are unreliable. And they break down during extensive operations. So, they should ditch the Chinese company they source parts from.

Carrier brands are suitable if you stay in less heat intensity regions. But, the Carrier air conditioners break down in hotter areas. But you can avoid such breakdowns with their 24VNA0 model number AC.

Carrier Cost Expectations and Price Comparison

grandaire vs carrier air conditioners

Carrier model number and cost list

Model NumberCost with InstallationCost without Installation
Carrier 24VNA0 $6115 $3,985
Carrier 24ANB1 $5950 $3,795
Carrier 24VNA9 $4890 $2,900
Carrier 24ANB7 $4675 $2,650
Carrier 24ANB7**C $4710 $2,670
Carrier 24ANB6 $4250 $2,295
Carrier 24ACB7 $3775 $2,159
Carrier 24ACB3 $3500 $1,900
Carrier 24AHA4 $3550 $1,950
Carrier 24APB6 $3575 $1,975
Carrier 24AAA6 $3430 $1,825
Carrier 24ABC6 $3330 $1,625
Carrier 24AAA5 $3150 $1,550
Carrier 24ACC4 $3195 $1,525
Carrier 24ABB3 $3200 $1,530
Carrier 24ABB3**C $2990 $1,375
Carrier 24ACA4**C $3050 $1,450

Carrier Air Conditioner Models

Whenever you claim your AC warranty or support, remember the model number. For example, The Infinity®20 AC is the 24VNAO model. 

Carrier AC models come in three series

  • Infinity series – 24ANB6, 24ANB7**C, 24ANB7, 24VNA9, 24ANB1, and 24VNA0
  • Comfort series – 24ACA4**C, 24ABB3**C, 24ABB3, 24ACC4, 24AAA5, 24ABC6, and 24AAA6
  • Performance series – 24APB6, 24AHA4, 24ACB3, 24ACC6, and 24ACB7
ModelTonnageSEER*Noise Levels**BTU’sCompressor
Carrier 24VNA02-520.555 dB24,000-60,000Two Stage
Carrier 24ANB12-52149 dB24,000-60,000Two Stage
Carrier 24VNA92-51967 dB24,000-60,000Two Stage
Carrier 24ANB72-51763 dB24,000-60,000Two Stage
Carrier 24ANB7**C2-51771 dB24,000-60,000Two Stage
Carrier 24ANB61.5-51670 dB24,000-60,000Two Stage
Carrier 24ACB72-51755 dB24,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ACC61.5-51657 dB24,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ACB31.5-51360 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24AHA41.5-51455 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24APB61.5-51659 dB24,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24AAA61.5-51662 dB24,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ABC61.5-51467 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24AAA51.5-51466 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ACC41.5-51370 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ABB31.5-51375 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ABB3**C1.5-51463 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage
Carrier 24ACA4**C1.5-51472 dB18,000-60,000Single Stage

Carrier Pros and Cons


  • Excellent after-sale services
  • Services are widespread across the US and other well-known cities in the world
  • Smart technology and features
  • Their units are eligible for tax credits


  • Expensive and complex installation process
  • Inefficient and unreliable compared to other HVAC brands
  • Shorter warranty periods, unlike their competitors within the same price range
  • No labor unless you have an extended warranty
  • No checks on the installers they contract
  • Prone to break downs in extensive operations

Grandaire vs Carrier: Face To Face Comparison


Grandaire Prices

ModelPricePrice with installationRunning cost estimatesGovernment Tax Break
WCA3$1590 – 1890$3590 – 3890$490 – 520Nill
WCA4$1650 – 1950$3650 – 3950$470 – 515Nill
WCA5$1780 – 2200$3780 – 4200$455 – 490Nill
WCA6$2180 – 2660$4180 – 4660$440 – 480$300

Carrier Prices

Table two – Carrier prices

ModelPricePrice with installationRunning cost estimationsTax Breaks
Carrier 24VNA0$3,985$6115~$400$300
Carrier 24ANB1$3,795$5950~$420$300
Carrier 24VNA9$2,900$4890~$464$300
Carrier 24ANB7$2,650$4675~$519$300
Carrier 24ANB7**C$2,670$4710~$519$300
Carrier 24ANB6$2,295$4250~$551$300
Carrier 24ACB7$2,159$3775~$519$300
Carrier 24ACC6$2,100$3700~$551$300
Carrier 24ACB3$1,900$3500~$678Nill
Carrier 24AHA4$1,950$3550~$630Nill
Carrier 24APB6$1,975$3575~$551$300
Carrier 24AAA6$1,825$3430~$551$300
Carrier 24ABC6$1,625$3330~$551Nill
Carrier 24AAA5$1,550$3150~$588Nill
Carrier 24ACC4$1,525$3195~$630Nill
Carrier 24ABB3$1,530$3200~$678Nill
Carrier 24ABB3**C$1,375$2990~$678Nill
Carrier 24ACA4**C$1,450$3050~$630Nill

Energy Efficiency/SEER Rating

The SEER rating measures how your HVAC system is efficient. And it’s a ratio between the unit’s wattage input and BTU output capabilities. The SEER rating compares several models’ efficiency and operation costs. And determines if the HVAC unit qualifies for Government tax rebates.

Grandaire units range between 13 SEER WCA3 and 16 SEER WCA6. Remember that all 13 SEER units aren’t legal in the south. So you need a unit with a minimum of 13 SEER in some areas. But in hotter and extra humid regions, you need a unit with 15+ SEER.

While some Carrier units are efficient and cost less, the rest aren’t that. Several AC brands, for example, Trane, offer more efficient units. However, Carrier AC brands beat them when it comes to prices. They are low.

Compressor Options

Compressors contribute a massive amount to energy usage. And they need extra volts to begin operations. More efficient and smoother compressors will lower the AC running costs. And raise its SEER ratings or values. Unfortunately, Grandaire units offer single-stage scrolling compressors.

Carrier units come with single and two-stage compressors.

Single-stage compressors offer one phase. And they run at their highest speeds when they cool a room or house. Once your home cools down, and the intake is less hot, they turn off. But the compressors run again when the air circulation becomes warm or hot.

Unlike the single-stage compressors, the two-stage ones are extra efficient. And they run at low and high speeds.

Condenser Fan Options

Since Grandaire AC models come with single-stage compressors, they have single-speed fans. I won’t tell you to place multi-speed or variable speed fans on single-stage compressors. If you do so, you’ll shorten the compressor’s life. Also, you’ll make the HVAC unit less efficient.

Single-stage compressors need single-speed condenser fans. But, at the same time, the single-stage compressors need double-speed ones.

The following Carrier units have single-speed fans

  • 24ACB7
  • 24ACC6
  • 24ACB3
  • 24AHA4
  • 24APB6
  • 24AAA6
  • 24ABC6
  • 24AAA5
  • 24ACC4
  • 24ABB3
  • 24ABB3**C
  • 24ACA4**C

While the following Carrier units have double-speed condenser fans

  • 24VNA0
  • 24ANB1
  • 24VNA9
  • 24ANB7
  • 24ANB7**C
  • 24ANB6

Heating Options

If you require AC and heat, choose Grandaire package units. Their handlers have electric heat that aligns well with the available condensing units. If your central air and heating system doesn’t satisfy you, Grandaire offers

  • Heat pumps
  • Mini-split systems
  • Furnaces

The options I’ve mentioned will satisfy your heating needs.

Also, Carrier AC units can heat your home if need be. Instead of it being a brooding room for insects when winter hits. Most HVAC package units’ compressors play the role of heat pumps. The unit compressors dispel negative pressure on the Puron to heat it for heating.

The unit becomes a heater when cool air goes through the AC’s warm coils.

Noise Levels

Grandaire’s condensing units aren’t quiet, unlike other models in the HVAC market. Moreover, several other brands produce systems with noise cancellation. But you’ll need to ask or order the specific models on your own. Grandaire units’ noise range from the four models is 69 to 79dB.

Among Carrier’s model units, 24ANB1 is the quietest. And it goes as low as 41dB. So I can compare it to a person talking from a distance.

But 24ANB1 isn’t the only quiet Carrier model; the comfort models are also. Moreover, other competitors like Haier can floor them in terms of quietness.


In the first 12 months, you’ll qualify for a 12-month replacement. But that’s possible if the AC becomes faulty.

Also, Grandaire gives you a 5-year warranty on its sealed systems and compressors. On top of that, Grandaire offers you a 5-year warranty on the condenser units and coils.

However, if you register the unit within 90 days, Grandaire adds five years. But they exclude the 1-year replacement warranty from that 5-year extension.

Carrier brand offers limited warranties on condensing units and heat pumps with Puron. And that means Carrier gives its customers a 5-year limited warranty.

The warranty covers replacement parts and compressors. However, registrations within 90 days qualify for a 5-year extension.

Tax Breaks

The Grandaire unit should be 16+ SEER, new, and a pro should install it to qualify for a tax break. Also, it should be in a house you own. For that, new constructions or rental places don’t qualify.

If you meet the requirements, fill a form 5695 via the IRS website. After filling out the form, the government will credit it to the taxes.

There are several Carrier units with 16+ SEER. And they qualify for a $300 tax break upon purchase of each unit.

Bottom Line: Should you Choose Grandaire or Carrier?

In the article, it’s evident that Carrier beats Grandaire in several departments. Compressors, condenser fan options, models, noise levels, etc.

But in terms of heating options, energy efficiency, and warranty, Grandaire floors Carrier.

So, choose Grandaire for

  • The scroll compressor
  • Cheap but comfortable models
  • Chlorine-free heat pumps
  • The R-410A refrigerant
  • Reasonable tax rebates

And choose Carrier for

  • Its Ozone-friendly R32 and R-410A refrigerants
  • Power-saving features
  • It’s inverter technology
  • The cooling coils
  • Ambient temperatures
  • Intelligent alert system
  • 5-layer protection

Without a doubt, both Grandaire and Carrier have excellent HVAC systems to offer. But as I said earlier, Carrier beats them in most departments. And for that reason, Carrier wins the Grandaire vs. Carrier debate.

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