Goodman GCVC96 Review
AFUE:Up to 96 percent
ENERGY STAR ®:Yes
Blower Type:Variable-speed ECM
Price:$4,400 to $5,000
BTU Output:26,880 to 115,200
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Goodman makes a wide range of furnaces, and the GCVC96 is one of their higher-end mid-range models. It’s a high-efficiency unit with enough features and design specifications to make it appealing for many homeowners.
This Goodman furnace review of the GCVC96 will explain all about the furnace’s special features, cool tech, pricing, warranty terms, and more. And to give you a good idea of how it stands up against other Goodman furnaces, we’ll compare it to three other models and help you choose the right one.
The Goodman GCVC96 in a Nutshell
Average Price (with installation): $4,400 to $5,000
- Has a secondary heat exchanger that recycles the heat in the exhaust gasses for more efficient performance
- Your investment is protected through Goodman’s generous warranty
- Economical and provides excellent value for the price
- ENERGY STAR® certification and high-AFUE mean excellent cost-savings on energy bills
- Efficient, quiet, and reliable ECM blower motor with variable-speed capacity
- Equipped with Goodman’s special features, ComfortBridge™ and the CoolCloud™ HVAC app
- Low nitrogen oxide emissions can make your home a little greener
- Promises gentle increases and decreases in airflow for quiet and even comfort
The Bottom Line
The two-stage burner and variable-speed ECM blower motor at the heart of the GCVC96 make this an excellent, quality, and high-efficiency furnace that shouldn’t have trouble keeping even larger homes warm through cold Canadian winters. Plus, you'll save a great deal of money on monthly heating bills compared to an older furnace with low- or mid-efficiency.
The design specifications, AFUE, and ENERGY STAR certification also mean this furnace could be eligible for rebates, which would further lower the price. Lastly, you could also save money over time thanks to Goodman’s lengthy warranty.
Goodman gas furnace prices are already some of the lowest around, so all in all, this is a good option if you're on a budget.
In Depth Review
Goodman GCVC96 Product Specifications
- AFUE: 96 percent
- Burner type: Two-stage
- Blower type: Variable-speed ECM
- ENERGY STAR certified: Yes
- Heating capacity: 26,880 to 115,200 BTUs
The GCVC96 has a number of design features and specifications that improve performance and efficiency. For example, the two-stage burner and variable-speed blower motor allow the furnace to operate longer in a quieter and more energy-efficient stage to keep your house warm.
Beyond that, the model also has a secondary heat exchanger, and this works to reduce heat loss, eliminate fuel waste, and increase efficiency. Similarly, the thermally insulated cabinet reduces heat loss, air leaks, and noise levels.
Finally, the GCVC96 uses a silicon nitride ignitor, which is more reliable and doesn’t waste fuel the way a pilot light does.
Another cool feature that enhances performance is ComfortBridge Technology, which allows furnace components to communicate with the thermostat. This improves performance by enabling the thermostat to initiate automatic adjustments to the settings so that your house stays at the perfect temperature all the time.
And then there’s the CoolCloud HVAC app, which is designed to be used by contractors to make installation and repairs faster and easier. The app gives HVAC pros access to data, settings, diagnostics, and even notes from previous contractors.
Other Key Features
- Unit has versatile installation applications
- Important internal components are protected thanks to the baked-enamel finish on the cabinet
- Can be controlled with a single- or two-stage thermostat
- Has fast condensate water drainage to eliminate water leaks
- Special tubular heat exchanger that’s made of aluminized steel produces a heat exchanger that’s reliable and durable
- Equipped with self-diagnostics and a fault code display for faster troubleshooting and repairs
- Has ready-to-go connections for a humidifier and electronic air cleaner
Goodman has one of the best warranties in the industry, and the GCVC96 comes with the most coverage they offer. This is what the protection for Goodman furnaces like the GCVC96 looks like:
- It has a 10-year parts warranty
- It has a 10-year unit replacement warranty
- It has a lifetime heat exchanger warranty
The unit replacement warranty also has to do with the heat exchanger, and it means that Goodman will offer to provide a brand new furnace if the heat exchanger fails within 10 years of installation.
Warranties can save you a great deal of money on repair costs, and to make sure you get the longest terms possible, register the furnace with Goodman within 60 days of installation.
And you might want to read the warranty terms as well to make sure you don’t do anything that could void the warranty, like trying to install the furnace yourself.
Comparable Models by Goodman
Model Comparison by Price: GCVC96 versus GMVM97
The GMVM97 is one of Goodman’s premier furnaces, so it is a little pricier, coming in around $4,600 to $5,200 for purchase and installation.
For those extra couple hundred dollars, however, you do get some additional perks that could make it well worth it.
Namely, the GMVM97 has a modulating gas valve that can make incremental adjustments to the heating output for even better efficiency and performance. It has an AFUE of 98 percent, so you'll save even more on heating bills.
It’s worthwhile mentioning that the difference in energy savings that you'll see between a 96 and 98 percent AFUE furnace won’t be that noticeable. Both will offer significant savings compared to your older furnace, but there will only be a small difference between the two new models.
Model Comparison by Features: GCVC96 versus GM9S96-U
The GM9S96-U is a more basic Goodman gas furnace. It has a single-stage burner paired with a multi-speed ECM blower motor, so it won’t be able to compete with the GCVC96 in terms of performance.
What does that mean, exactly? The GM9S96-U won’t provide the same temperature consistency throughout the day, and you may notice more hot and cold spots around the house. It will probably be a little noisier too, even though it has features to reduce sound.
Another thing is the GM9S96-U may not work in larger homes because the single-stage burner might not be able to keep up with your heating demands during a typical Canadian winter.
Nonetheless, the GM9S96-U does still have the same high-efficiency AFUE of 96 percent, so it will be cheaper and will produce comparable energy savings.
Moreover, the GM9S96-U has a special premix burner that premixes oxygen and fuel before combustion, so it boasts ultra-low NOx emissions.
Model Comparison by Tier: GCVC96 versus GCEC96
Like the GCVC96, the GCEC96 is also a mid-range furnace from Goodman. The two have a lot of similarities, including two-stage operation, ECM blower motors, ENERGY STAR certification, 96 percent AFUEs, and warranty coverage. They even fall into a similar price range.
The GCEC96 will be slightly cheaper, but you'll also have to give up a few things. For example, the GCEC96 has a multi-speed blower motor that’s not as sophisticated or as efficient as the GCVC96’s variable-speed one. The GCEC96 also doesn’t have ComfortBridge Technology or the CoolCloud HVAC app if those are features you find appealing.
Further, the GCEC96 has been marked as a limited inventory furnace, meaning Goodman has probably replaced it with an updated model and won’t be making more. However, you may still be able to find stock with your local HVAC dealer.