Can Quilt Disrupt the Residential HVAC Market?

Last week a HVAC start up company called Quilt held an event in Redwood City, CA to launch their new product: a residential heat pump.

I feel like I’m uniquely qualified to talk about this company because 1: I’m in the HVAC industry and 2: I’m a huge tech nerd. I lived in the Bay Area for almost 10 years. I follow companies such as Apple, Google, etc. So of course I watched their announcement live. Here are my thoughts.

What is Quilt

Quilt is a brand new HVAC company based in Redwood City dedicated to selling heat pumps directly to homeowners. It was started by ex-Google and Apple employees. It looks like they are trying to tackle the residential HVAC market with the direct to consumer model. Companies like Nest, All Birds, Warby Parker, etc. have tried to disrupt industries by going direct to consumer. Let’s see if Quilt can do the same.

What are they offering

Their product is an all in one solution for residential heat pump equipment, installation, and servicing. From their website , t is a 2.5 Ton heat pump with up to 2 zones on a single heat pump. The indoor fan coil is a high wall mount.

What’s different

What makes them unique is their design aesthetic and go to market strategy.

Traditionally, if a homeowner wanted to install or upgrade their HVAC system, they’d have to find a local contractor. The quality of contractor varies greatly and they usually have a brand or a few brands they are either loyal or comfortable installing. In the latter case, if you have a stubborn contractor, if you wanted to install a heat pump, they may convince you to sticking with a gas furnace since that is probably what they are comfortable installing. Quilt solves that by using contractors that ONLY install Quilt equipment. If a homeowner wants a Quilt system, they have to use their installers.

The equipment they offer looks a lot nicer than traditional mini splits. Most HVAC equipment is not designed to fit in a home’s interior. Quilt designed their equipment to fit into a home’s interior AND exterior design. I have to say these are the nicest mini splits I’ve ever seen.


The go to market strategy, especially for the residential market is old and confusing, and definitely needs reimagining, disruption, and a new way of thinking. As a homeowner, I appreciate this approach.

The equipment looks amazing. The indoor unit is a wall mount, but they designed it to be as short as possible so they can fit it above a window. They have two different decorative panels that will fit into most home decor. It even has a built in light so you could mount it above a picture or piece of art.

The outdoor unit has a decorative matte black covering. The outdoor heat pump almost disappears in most homes yards.

The thermostat looks very similar to a Nest thermostat and looks easy to control.


Going to market and scaling is going to be very difficult. There’s a reason why the residential market is the way that it is. It’s very difficult for one manufacturer to service the entire United States. They are also limited to the Bay Area at launch. Scaling and rolling out will involve having to acquire and train local contractors which is a huge undertaking.

It’s expensive. Quilt is charging $6,499 per zone. Granted, it’s an all in one solution including installation. Also, not sure if it includes permits, demo, etc. It does NOT include potential credits and rebates for what it’s worth.


How many zones can attach to one outdoor unit. It looks like you can do up to two zones on one outdoor unit. The outdoor unit looks like it is a 2 1/2 ton. It looks like this is a pretty efficient unit I wonder who is manufacturing it for them .
How do you address homes with more than two zones? Do they just add more systems or can you add morphine coils to a larger outdoor unit?

My Thoughts

I think what Quilt is doing is awesome. If you think about the process of buying a new heat pump or air conditioning system for your home, it is complicated. First thing you would have to do typically is find a contractor. And there are different types of contractors and the quality can vary. By establishing themselves as a heat pump brand that can do the entire job top the bottom, from supplying the equipment to installing it, is going to make it easy for consumers. They also help with finding rebates which is going to bring down the cost of heat pumps.

The task ahead of them is also very difficult. There’s a reason why most HVAC manufacturers do business the way that they do. The United States is a huge country and it is next to impossible for any manufacturer to serve the entire country by themselves. That’s why the auto industry has car dealerships. But as we’ve seen with Tesla, that business model can be disrupted.

Overall, I think the product looks cool, we’ll see how it performs when the first units get installed. We’ll see how they do, but anything that helps heat pumps get into the minds of everybody, homeowners, building owners, etc. the better for the HVAC industry and for really the entire planet in general.