Electric vs. Gas Hot Water Systems: How Do They Compare?

If you have a hot water system that is more than 10 years old, it’s likely the right time to start considering a replacement. However, you also need to think about whether you want an electric hot water system or a gas hot water system. Each of them can do the same things, but there are differences between the two. We’ll share what you can expect from each so you can make the right choice for yourself.

Heating Water Quickly

When it comes to heating water fast, a gas hot water system is the best option. They can be twice as fast as an electric model is. The reason for this is because gas water heaters have a higher recovery rate when compared to an electric water heater. If you are in a large family where everyone is rushing for showers at the same time of day, that might make a gas system the right option for you.

Easy to Use

If ease of use is important to you in a water heater, the best option is an electric hot water system. The entire heater and its equipment works only from electrical power, which means there’s no need to turn on gas or fiddle with controls to get the heating process started. It isn’t a huge difference in terms of ease of use, but it is still there.

Lower Cost to Operate

In many places, gas is cheaper to use for water heating than electricity is. That means that choosing a gas hot water system is often going to cost less to operate than a unit that requires electricity to get your water nice and warm. You still must realize that the initial cost of installing a gas water heater can be high. However, it will cost less to operate over the long run.

Costs Less to Install

While gas water heaters are cheaper to run over time, an electric hot water system is often cheaper to install in general. There is no venting required, so the installation is easier and more straightforward, which means savings are passed on to you. With a gas water heater, there may be a need to install a new ventilation system which ramps up the price.

Operates Even Without Power

Despite all the positives of an electric hot water system, one of the problems is that if your power goes out, you can’t get hot water. Only gas hot water systems are able to operate when there is no electricity. If this is something that concerns you, it’s definitely a point to the gas water heater rather than the alternative.

Power Source Availability

On the other hand, electric water heaters can be used at any home that is connected to the power grid since only electricity is required. However, gas-powered heaters require a connection to the local gas service.

There are pros and cons to either type of water heater and in the end, the decision to choose one over the other is your own. However, if you have questions and want insight into the best option, your local plumber can assist.


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