My parents have a two story home in North New Jersey, ~2250 sq. ft. living space (1500 top/750 ground floor) built 1982 with central heating. The A/C was added in 83 and both need to be replaced. After months of searching, I finally found a good contractor who is willing to do a Manual J and a static pressure test.

His recommendation:

Trane
Furnace: XV95 (2 stage)
Condenser: XR15

or

Coleman
Furnace: CP9C (Modulating)
Condenser: TCJF

Thermostat: Vision Pro 8000 or IAQ
Media Air Cleaner: Honeywell F100
New refrigerant lines
Other miscellaneous items

Same price for both systems.

He recommends the Trane due to the increased reliability of the XR15 over the TCJF and it would reach 16 SEER, qualifying for the full COOLADVANTAGE rebate.

My questions are:

1. Which is the more reliable furnace based on your experience, insider knowledge, etc.?

2. Which is the more reliable A/C based on your experience, insider knowledge, etc.?

3. Which company's coils are better constructed/reliable?

4. Would a modulating furnace with a VS blower be problematic with the older ductwork or if additional supplies/returns need to be added?

5. Is the F100 necessary to filter out dust and pollen or is the regular furnace filter sufficient?

6. Based on my research on this forum I've decided on the IAQ for its ability to slow down the blower but is it a reliable stat?

Thank you for your time and for helping out an HVAC novice.