Gas vs. Electric Water Heaters: Everything You Need to Know

In the world of appliances, the gas versus electric debate has raged on for years. There are a lot of considerations and variables involved, and it seems that everyone wants to tell you they have the right answer. The reality is that the “right answer” is the one that works for you. Once you learn about gas and electric water heaters, you’ll have an easier time choosing the right one for your replacement or upgrade. 

Gas Costs More Now, But Typically Less in the Long Run

Gas water heaters remain the most cost-effective in the long run and can recoup the initial investment relatively quickly in what you save on gas bills. So, even though these models are typically more expensive to buy in the first place, you will get every penny back, and then some, if your natural gas rates are around the average. If the cost to run the water heater is a concern, gas is your best choice. 

What’s the Case for Electric?

So, aside from the fact that electric water heaters have a lower initial investment, what can they offer? Well, for those who already have electric hook-ups in place, it can mean an easy replacement without additional expenses or reconfigurations. It also means that those who use solar energy may stand to gain more from their investment in electric because they won’t be paying for the electricity in addition to spending less upfront. Electric water heaters are also more efficient than gas models, despite often costing more to operate due to higher electricity rates. 

Other Things to Consider

What about longevity? Well, regardless of whether the unit is gas or electric, the average water heater will last between 10 and 13 years. Tankless models can last up to 20 years or more. Thus, this isn’t going to be a factor in your decision if you’re on the fence between the two heating options. Look more at the elements discussed above. You’ll also want to compare all of the features to help you narrow down your options based on which factors are most important to you. 

Ultimately, most people stick with whatever is already in their home. If they have electric, they choose an electric model. If they have gas connections, they’ll buy a gas water heater. However, if you’re ever in the position to choose or you just want to know more about both styles, this is what you need to remember. 

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