Lennox Elite EL296E Review
AFUE:Up to 96%
ENERGY STAR ®:Yes
Burner Type:Dual Stage
Blower Type:Constant Torque
Price:$6,600 to $7,200
BTU Output:43,000 - 127,000
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The EL296E is one of the mid-range Lennox Elite series furnaces. It’s also one of their high-efficiency furnaces and has good design features and ENERGY STAR® certification, so you can expect lower energy costs and more even comfort in your home.
When you're looking for a new Lennox furnace, this model review of the EL296E will help you decide if it can meet your home heating demands and other needs.
We’ll cover important elements like energy efficiency, Lennox furnace prices, and the EL296E’s features and warranty details.
The review will also compare this Lennox model to three others to help you decide if this is the right brand for you and whether the EL296E has the features you want at a price you can afford.
The Lennox Elite EL296E in a Nutshell
Average Price (with installation): $6,600 to $7,200
- Equipped with a secondary heat exchanger
- Has a constant torque motor with more than one airflow speed
- High-efficiency AFUE that will reduce energy bills
- Made with lasting and durable components
- Quiet and efficient operation
- Could be eligible for rebates
- Equipped with Lennox’s proprietary heat exchanger, ignition system, and blower motor
- Backed by a standard warranty
- Ready to be paired with an air filter and humidifier
The Bottom Line
Lennox’s EL296E is a high-efficiency furnace that’s superior to standard gas furnaces because it has a two-stage burner and condensing technology. It will run in the lower, quieter speed for longer periods to maintain the temperature of your home, all while using less fuel.
It also has Lennox’s Power Saver™ constant torque motor that can adjust the airflow to reduce noise, save energy, and manage humidity better.
Thanks to the design features and specifications, the EL296E shouldn’t have any trouble keeping your home warm throughout the cold winter months. Two-stage furnaces are great for Canadian winters, even if you're in a large home.
Finally, the features, efficiency rating, and specifications also mean this model could potentially be eligible for more rebates than single-stage furnaces, and this could help offset the cost, which tends to be higher for Lennox products because they're a premium name in the industry.
In Depth Review
Lennox Elite EL296E Product Specifications
- AFUE: 96 percent
- Burner type: Two-stage
- Blower type: Constant torque
- ENERGY STAR certified: Yes
Lennox furnaces don’t have many special features or novel technologies like some brands do, but they do have a number of selling features that can make them appeal to homeowners.
For one thing, the EL296E has an LED display that a technician can use to view diagnostic codes and help with repairs.
This Lennox furnace is also designed for fast and precise installation thanks to design elements like factory prepared flanges, flue collars, and holes. All of this can potentially mean lower installation costs.
One of the cool things about the EL296E is the additional features you can access when you pair the furnace with Lennox’s iComfort E30 smart thermostat.
Those features include an away mode to save energy, geofencing that will automatically put the furnace into away mode when you leave the house, outdoor air quality monitoring and automatic fan adjustments to preserve indoor air quality, and voice control features when you sync the thermostat with a technology like Amazon Alexa, Apple HomeKit, IFTTT, or others.
Other Key Features
- Dual fuel capable when paired with a compatible heat pump
- Duralok Plus heat exchanger helps to make the furnace efficient, reliable, and durable
- Sound-absorbing materials ensure quiet operation
- Primary heat exchanger has a durable and reliable clamshell design that reduces air leaks and improves heat transfer
- The blower compartment is insulated to reduce noise and air leaks
- Can be paired with the PureAir purification system
- Two-speed operation can reduce summertime humidity indoors
- Burners don’t lose efficiency over the life of the furnace
- Furnace has been factory tested to ensure reliable and lasting performance
- Equipped with a SureLight® silicon nitride ignitor
- Has an ultra-low continuous fan option
It’s easy to just pay attention to the price when you need a new furnace, but warranty coverage is also very important. Lennox gas furnaces are backed by a standard warranty for the HVAC industry: a lifetime heat exchanger warranty and a 10-year parts warranty.
To qualify for the full protection, you have to register the product within 60 days of installation. Eligibility varies by province, so speak to your certified HVAC installer for more information and registration assistance.
To protect the warranty and keep it valid, make sure you have the EL296E installed by a licensed HVAC contractor, and take care of the regular maintenance laid out in the owner’s manual or warranty conditions document.
Comparable Models by Lennox
Model Comparison by Price: EL296E versus Merit ML296V
When comparing Lennox furnace models, the entry-level ML296V will give the Elite EL296E a run for its money.
The average cost to buy and install the ML296V is $4,200 to $4,800. Even though the ML296V comes from a lower tier, it arguably provides better value for the money compared to the EL296E.
The ML296V is a two-stage gas furnace with a 96 percent AFUE and ENERGY STAR certification. What's more, the ML296V is a variable-speed furnace that can incrementally adjust the airflow for quieter and more efficient operation.
It also offers many of the same perks as the Lennox Elite series model, including a secondary heat exchanger and condensing technology, dual fuel option with a heat pump, and compatibility with a Lennox smart thermostat. However, it has a shorter 20-year heat exchanger warranty.
Model Comparison by Features: EL296E versus Dave Lennox Signature Series SLP99V
Lennox’s EL296E can't compete with the design features offered by the Dave Lennox Signature Collection SLP99V, the most efficient natural gas furnace on the market.
The SLP99V is a variable-capacity gas furnace with a modulating burner. It has an AFUE of 99 percent, meaning only $0.01 of every dollar you spend on fuel isn't converted into heat for your home.
It’s also one of the quietest heating systems available, and it has excellent humidity management and even temperature distribution.
And another thing about the SLP99V is that it’s compatible with Lennox’s more advanced smart thermostat, the iComfort S30, which has some additional features that the E30 doesn’t offer.
Model Comparison by Tier: EL296E versus EL195NE
The EL195NE is another one of Lennox’s mid-range furnace models from the Elite series, but there are some key differences between the two models.
For one, the EL195NE only has a single-stage burner, meaning it only has an On and Off setting and doesn’t have a higher and a lower heating output like the EL296E has. As a result, the EL195NE has a marginally lower AFUE of 95 percent. This heating system will work best in smaller homes or milder parts of Canada.
At the same time, the EL195NE does have one major benefit, especially for Canadians who are concerned about their environmental impact: the EL195NE has a special burner technology that reduces emissions, and it qualifies as an ultra-low nitrogen oxide furnace.