Lennox Merit 16ACX Review
SEER:Up to 17
ENERGY STAR ®:Yes
Decibel Level:As low as 75
Price:$4,500 to $6,500+
In order to help homeowners shop for furnaces and air conditioners, we developed our own proprietary algorithms which weigh a range of criteria and factors to provide an easy-to-compare grade (e.g. B-, A+, etc).
Warranty Grade: It can be difficult to know which brands and models offer the best warranty coverage, particularly because a lot of the key details are hidden in dense warranty documents filled with hard to understand legalese. Thankfully for you, we’ve carefully studied them and created this grading system to account for things like the length AND quality of their guarantee, coverage restrictions and more!
Overall Grade: This grade weighs key factors like efficiency, ENERGY STAR certification, comfort, noise level (for A/Cs), our warranty grade, and more.
Get instant access by creating a FREE account in seconds! (Plus get all these extra benefits)
Or Log In here
Lennox’s Merit 16ACX is an entry-level offering from the brand, but it’s the most sophisticated of their standard air conditioners.
One of the things that sets the Merit 16ACX apart from the brand’s other entry-level systems is its two-stage compressor, which translates to quieter operation, a higher efficiency rating, and better humidity control throughout the summer.
The Merit 16ACX is a great option for homeowners who want a more affordable air conditioner from a premium brand, and that provides a good balance between luxury and value.
This model review of Lennox’s Merit 16ACX will explain all the pros and cons of this air conditioner. It will cover average prices in Canada, key features and design elements, warranty details, and more. Finally, the review will compare the Merit 16ACX to a more expensive Lennox air conditioner, one with more features, and one from the same entry-level tier.
About the Lennox Merit 16ACX
Average Price (with installation): $3,500 - $5,000
- ENERGY STAR® certification means it’s guarantee to perform efficiently
- Could be eligible for additional rebates for energy-efficient models
- Two-stage compressor
- Advanced durability features that increase longevity
- Quiet operation
- An entry-level unit at a more affordable price than some other Lennox models
- More sophisticated than some other entry-level air conditioners
The Bottom Line
The Merit 16ACX is a more budget-friendly entry-level air conditioner with a comparatively sophisticated two-stage compressor. This means it can operate on a lower speed for longer periods for more efficient and quieter performance while also delivering even temperatures throughout the house.
Plus, it offers improved humidity control compared to single-stage compressors. Furthermore, when the model is paired with a variable-stage furnace, it delivers even better humidity control.
There are a few sub-models of the Merit 16ACX that have SEER ratings ranging from 14 to 17, so if energy performance is one of your main concerns, then pay attention to the efficiency rating of the specific sub-model you're looking at.
The Merit 16ACX has been designed to last and has many features that increase durability, but it’s also backed by a good warranty in case anything does go wrong.
In Depth Review
Lennox Merit 16ACX Product Specifications
- Compressor: Two-stage
- SEER: Up to 17
- ENERGY STAR certified: Yes
- Decibel rating: As low as 75
One of the great things about Lennox air conditioners like the Merit 16ACX is that they’ve been built to last. For example, this model has a special cabinet design that’s made to withstand years of being out in the elements.
The Merit 16ACX has also been designed with peace and quiet in mind, and along with the quieter two-stage compressor, it also has special fan and blade features that reduce noise while improving efficiency and air circulation.
Finally, this and other Lennox air conditioners have been designed for easy installation, and that means you could save on labour costs when you first buy the unit.
Other Key Features
- Direct-drive fan that’s both quiet and energy efficient
- Fan motor and blades that increase air circulation
- Special PermaGuard cabinet that’s rust- and corrosion-resistant for lasting performance
- Durable cabinet materials that will last through many summers
- Safe and easy to install
Like the other models in Lennox’s Merit line, the 16ACX is backed by a five-year limited warranty that covers parts and the compressor.
However, you can extend the warranty to 10 years if you register the unit online through Lennox. The company gives you 60 days to register a newly installed unit to take advantage of the extended registered warranty terms.
To register, you'll need things like the unit’s serial number, installation date, and the name and address of the professional dealer who did the installation.
Comparable Models by Lennox
Model Comparison by Price: Merit 16ACX versus Dave Lennox Signature Collection XC21
The XC21 is a premium Lennox air conditioner, so it’s also one of their most expensive. In Canada, it costs homeowners an average of $5,000 to $7,500+ to buy and install an XC21 from Lennox.
While you might expect to get a lot more air conditioner for that additional cost, the truth is that both models have the same two-stage compressor style.
And while the XC21 does have a much higher 21 SEER rating, that much power isn't typically necessary in Canada, where our summers tend to be shorter and milder than other places.
However, if you're looking for a premium air conditioner with premium features, then the XC21 could be a better option. It does offer some perks that the Merit model doesn’t, including even quieter operation and compatibility with Lennox’s iComfort smart thermostat.
This is a sophisticated thermostat, and when you use it as the control for the XC21, you get access to features like geofencing, automatic fan adjustments based on pollen levels, learning capabilities, and more.
Model Comparison by Features: Lennox Merit 16ACX versus Lennox Elite XC20
The Elite XC20 is a model from Lennox’s mid-range air conditioner series. It has a SEER rating of 20, and the efficiency rating, design specifications, and tier mean it will be pricier than the Merit model.
The XC20 also has a more advanced variable-speed compressor than the Merit 16ACX, so it’s quieter, more efficient, and promises steadier temperatures. It was also designated as one of the ENERGY STAR Most Efficient 2022, so there might be additional rebates it qualifies for.
Another feature that the XC20 offers is a longer warranty than the Merit 16ACX: the XC20 automatically comes with a 10-year warranty for the compressor, and the five-year parts warranty can be extended to 10 upon registration.
Finally, the XC20 has a decibel rating as low as 65, so it’s also quieter than the Merit 16ACX.
Model Comparison by Tier: Lennox Merit 16ACX versus Lennox Merit 13ACX
The Merit 13ACX is in the same entry-level tier as the Merit 16ACX, but it’s a much simpler and more basic air conditioner. For one thing, the 13ACX has a SEER rating of 13 and doesn’t qualify for ENERGY STAR certification. It also has a less efficient and noisier single-stage compressor.
At the same time, the Merit 13ACX has all the same durability features as the Merit 16ACX, has been rigorously tested for reliable and long-term performance, and comes with the same standard and registered warranty terms.
The 13ACX will be more affordable than the 16ACX, but the 13ACX won’t save you as much on annual cooling bills, it will probably be better suited for smaller homes, and it might not qualify for the same high-efficiency rebates as the 16ACX