XV20i Air Conditioner Details:
The XV20i TruComfort™ Variable Speed unit is one of the industry’s most efficient air conditioners. On the hottest days it cools with precision, keeping you comfortable all day.
MOST ENERGY EFFICIENT
UP TO 22 SEER
AN AVERAGE OF 64%
The Trane TruComfort™ systems give you precise comfort by running at the exact speed needed to keep your home comfortable. This allows the compressor, outdoor fan, and indoor fan to vary operating speed and BTU as the temperature outside changes, slowing down or speeding up gradually in as little as 1/10 of 1% increments to keep comfort within 1/2° of the thermostat setting.
The XV20i air conditioner is one of the industry’s most efficient systems, with ratings up to 22 SEER. With Trane TruComfort™ technology, the 22-SEER air conditioner automatically adjusts itself while maintaining constant and consistent speeds to avoid temperature swings.
ComfortLink II communicating capability
ComfortLink™ II communicating technology (available when matched with communicating indoor units) connects all of your key components so your system automatically configures and calibrates for optimal performance and efficiency through the lifetime of your products.
Durable, Quiet, and Economical
Rigorously tortured and tested for long-lasting durability, you can be sure this system will hold up to anything, without holding up your bank account. And with the quiet running fan, 4 dB below our competitor’s minimum, you can be sure you are getting a quiet air conditioner and the best all-around system for your home.
Cleaner, Healthier Indoor Air
Add Trane CleanEffects™ to your system to filter the incoming air to eliminate dust, pollen, and other irritants for a cleaner, healthier, and more comfortable home.
The Trane XV20i comes as an air conditioner or heat pump, representing the latest sophisticated comfort technology.
How often do you want the top-of-the-line product but settle for something middle-of-the-road? These “compromise” decisions are commonplace in HVAC.
But what if I told you that for many homeowners, there’s no need to compromise with HVAC equipment?
The Trane XV20i is the top of the line regarding cooling comfort. In HVAC, as in most aspects of life, you get what you pay for. Unlike some other investments, this one can continue to benefit you and your family for years or even decades of your life.
To be clear: the XV20i isn’t for everyone. There are situations where it doesn’t make sense to install one. We’re going to cover those cases, too, because – and this is something I’m passionate about – we’re not here to sell air conditioners. We’re here to find the best fit for our customers. If we do that, we honor our commitment to building trust, and it will be better for everyone in the long run. We’ll always keep that commitment across the dinner table during a home estimate or in a blog article.
With that said, I’m equally excited to talk about the XV20i because it’s a fantastic upgrade from most other equipment on the market today. It often makes the most long-term sense for homeowners who initially weren’t even considering it.
Cars, Couches, and Dinner Parties
I want to pose a few scenarios directly related to the XV20i’s benefits. We’re not always used to consider the benefits of HVAC equipment since it’s purchased so infrequently, and it can help find useful analogies for its benefits.
You’re on a road trip, which will take you across significant highways, small neighborhood roads, and everything in between. You have two options:
- Every time you need to give the car gas, you have to slam the pedal to the floor.
- You have an advanced cruise control that will intelligently take you from 20mph to 80mph, depending on the situation.
Which would you pick?
Another scenario: you have a $1,200 budget for a new couch. You head to a bunch of stores, and nothing for $1,200 feels comfortable. However, you find one for $1,900 that is very comfortable and has options you hadn’t even considered but that you know you’ll use, like reclining sections and cup holders.
Which would you pick?
This last one isn’t even an analogy, just a real-world example. So you’re hosting a dinner party, and 20+ people will be in your home. It will be hot, but it’s 57 degrees outside, so you can’t turn on your air conditioner without risking it freezing up. Opening windows might help, but it could pull in humidity or rain or create hot or cold air pockets.
What are the odds you’ll be hosting the next party?
We will return to each of these as we discuss the technology in the XV20i.
The Variable-Speed Advantage
SEER Rating (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) is something we focus on a lot because it’s an indicator of the overall efficiency of an AC unit. It’s not all that matters, however.
The XV20i can reach up to 22 SEER (or 20 SEER for its heat pump option). Both are excellent and will provide superior efficiency. However, I want to talk about how its variable-speed compressor equates to unreal comfort for your home.
If it’s 80 degrees and you set your thermostat to 70 degrees, any air conditioning unit will kick on to 100% of its output and begin cooling your home. Once it gets to 70, most systems will kick on and off as the temperature jumps from about 68 to 72. You only get that 100% output setting.
With a two-stage system, you might have one more setting at ~70%, which allows the system to run more smoothly and efficiently. But it’s still only one more setting.
The XV20i has 700 stages of cooling! This number is 750 for the heat pump. In either case, this translates to hundreds of settings for precisely what your home needs. Are you a full 10 degrees off? It’ll take it up to 100%. But is it already at 70 and wants to chill out (pun intended)? It’ll ramp the system down to as low as 30% output (or 25% for the heat pump) so that you don’t have constant temperature swings and frequent on/off of your A/C unit. In this way, it might be “on” longer, but it’s ultimately using a lot less energy while also keeping you more comfortable.
Remember the cruise control analogy? This is it right here. A single-stage air conditioner compressor has one setting: pedal to the metal. A variable-speed system is an intelligent cruise control that optimizes any terrain (or weather conditions).
Some equipment out there will call itself variable-speed but may only have 4-5 stages. This is variable-speed in a technical sense but lacks the practical value of the XV20i. Those 700+ stages aren’t just for show! They have real, practical value regarding your comfort and utility bills.
Low Ambient Cooling
Now let’s go back to the dinner party. You’ve probably seen ice bubbles on refrigerant lines of air conditioners, and one of the ways that can happen is if the A/C is being run when the outdoor temperature is lower than it’s built to handle.
Usually, this threshold is 60 degrees. Any lower, and you’re playing with fire (or rather, playing with ice).
But because the variable-speed system can manage its heat absorption and moisture absorption so carefully, this temperature threshold is considerably lower. This is referred to as low ambient cooling.
The Trane manufacturer’s manual for these systems states that it can cool with outdoor temperatures “below 55 degrees.” While this isn’t an exact lower limit, the system also comes equipped with an emergency shutoff in case of conditions become too adverse.
In practice, the XV20i can and will go below this number. So is it 50 degrees outside for your dinner party but a bit hot and humid inside? No problem.
Low ambient cooling is a function that is more common in commercial equipment than residential equipment. But technology like that in the XV20i is slowly changing that fact.
Communicating for Comfort
You’ve probably heard about “smart home” technology, or even that specific HVAC equipment communicates with itself to optimize your heating and cooling. This is true, but not all forms of communication are equal in terms of their benefit.
You can set a single-stage air conditioner with a programmable thermostat, and it will read indoor and outdoor temperatures and operate accordingly. In a technical sense, it’s communicating.
The sophisticated technology in top-of-the-line systems is beyond this; it means good things for your comfort.
Because the XV20i (and compatible HVAC systems) have hundreds of cooling stages, it has many options for how it cools your home. So based on the outdoor temperature, indoor temperature, the settings you’ve provided, and the system’s past knowledge, it actively builds algorithms that allow it to cool more efficiently.
That’s right: it learns.
The benefit here is when you set up routines for your heating and cooling since it has a chance to optimize over time. One positive result is that you’re rarely going to be at the system’s maximum output outside some extreme temperature circumstances. Instead, it will take the most efficient path to your desired settings.
Temperature vs. Humidity
Since the system communicates with your furnace’s air conditioner and the blower motor, it can adjust multiple variables to achieve your desired temperature and humidity.
Air conditioners also remove humidity; ideally, your system provides comfortable levels of both. If you have a single-stage or two-stage system, it’s sometimes not going to be able to manage both groups properly.
So what happens if your home is at the desired temperature, but excess humidity from your basement is still making your home muggy? Most systems can “overcool” up to about three degrees to remove additional moisture. This often isn’t enough, though, and will also create energy sinks and colder temperatures than you’re comfortable with.
By independently controlling things like the evaporator coil intake on your A/C and the blower fan speed in your furnace, the XV20i can manage these levels much more quickly. In the most humid circumstances, you might still have slightly overcooling. However, this is rare due to the granular level of control the system has over both temperature and humidity removal.
Equipment Matching Considerations
An air conditioner is only as good as the system it is paired with. We’ve talked about the 700+ cooling stages the XV20i has. But if your furnace’s blower motor has two locations, you only have access to two of those 700+ on the air conditioning side since the blower fan is what is moving the air through your system for both heating and cooling.
That would be a waste of technology and, thus, a waste of your money.
The solution is a variable-speed blower motor with compatible heating technology that can leverage these options.
The XV20i means pairing it with either the XC80 or the XC95M furnace. Both have a variable-speed blower motor, and the XC95M has a modulating gas valve for more granular control over the heating capacity. While the XC95M is the more efficient of the two, both are excellent options to get everything possible out of your variable-speed air conditioner.
Is the XV20i Harder to Service?
In a word: No. There are a few ways it’s easier to install, maintain, and service than comparable or less expensive equipment.
To be clear: the XV20i is a piece of equipment that will need to be maintained, tuned up, and eventually repaired or replaced (ideally in 15-20 years or longer). This is true of every system. No technology will avoid those things entirely.
What the XV20i does, however, is find ways to prevent many potential problems proactively. How does it do this? A few ways:
- Trane’s patented spine-fin coils line the outside air conditioning unit, replacing a more traditional ring. Those standard coils can also be efficient but have dozens of welded connections that could eventually leak. The spine fin technology avoids this potential complication.
- Since the system is built to match similarly advanced Trane furnaces and thermostats, the amount of wiring needed for the system to communicate is minimal. Despite the sophistication of its communication, the electrical work involved is often less than during the installation of less advanced units.
- The system has built-in diagnostics, with simple “Green/Yellow/Red” indicators. You’re alerted to this fact as soon as something is running sub-optimally or could need maintenance, inspection, or repair. Many systems have some form of emergency shut-offs or more straightforward diagnostic procedures, but rarely as advanced as this.
What this equates to is peace of mind.
So with this unit, as with any HVAC system, it’s possible to proactively manage your system to prevent performance issues first, minimizing the risk and cost while maintaining your high level of comfort.