You’ve no doubt heard the tag-line, “It’s hard to stop a Trane.” It’s the main pitch for the Trane Company, an American produced of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning units. The same line might have been said about the founders of the company, the Trane family of La Crosse, Wisconsin.
It all got started when James Trane moved to the United States from his home in Tromso, Norway. He developed a system called Trane vapor heating that used low-pressure steam. His son, Reuben, graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a degree in mechanical engineering. He joined his father’s plumbing business and together in 1913 they incorporated the Trane Company.
By 1916, they had all their attention on the Trane Company’s manufacture of home heating systems. At the time, the main heating unit were bulky cast-iron radiators. They built the first convector radiator in 1925 and put it on the market. By 1931, they had built their first air conditioner and joined the burgeoning cooling market.
Trane continued as a privately owned business until the 1980s went it drew the interest of American Standard. Trane, of course, kept its brand name and its production of heating and cooling units for the international market. In 2007, Trane became its own company again after American Standard broke up its various holdings. Later that same year, Ingersoll-Rand purchased Trane and is today the primary owner.
Today, Trane continues to be a major leader in the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning industry. It sells HVAC units world-wide while at the same time providing HVAC service, parts support, and financial solutions. It has numerous manufacturing locations across the United States and the world, but is headquartered in Piscataway, New Jersey.