Weighing it up: Gas or Electric Central Heating?

It’s a much asked question: should I choose gas or electric central heating? It can be a challenge to deliver a straight answer because situations and requirements vary so much and there is much to consider. He we look at some of the main considerations to help you discover the differences.

Installation

Gas Boilers: Gas calls for pipework to be channelled from the boiler to the central heating radiators and then through the plumbing system so that hot water can be provided. A flue must be fitted to get rid of the emissions, and the pipework is required by law to be accessible so that it can be inspected on a regular basis. If you wish to update an existing gas boiler system it will often call for the pipework to be replaced, and this can be quite an undertaking.

Electric Boilers: Because these are wired into the mains, as are the central heating radiators, installation is a quick and easy task. There is no need for a flue or pipework so there is much less to do, and it means the boiler can be installed anywhere in the property, unlike gas boilers that must be fitted adjacent to an outside wall to allow for the flue.

Running Costs

Gas Boilers: Gas is said to be over three times less expensive than electric per Kilowatt Hour and as long as your boiler is an efficient condensing model your bills should be favourable.

Electric Boilers: Electric boilers are at least 99 per cent efficient and you will benefit greatly from lower costs if you can use one of the peak avoidance tariffs. Use your electric boiler used alongside an off peak controller and you will enjoy maximum benefit of the available reduced rate electricity.

There is lots to consider when weighing up the pros and cons of electric and gas central heating.

There is lots to consider when weighing up the pros and cons of electric and gas central heating.

Safety

Gas Boilers: All gas appliances must undergo an annual safety check by a Gas Safe registered engineer. For landlords this is a legal requirement and for private homeowners it is a strong recommendation. Any solid fuel burning appliance gives off harmful gases and the annual safety checks will ascertain whether they are being removed safely to the outside of the property.

Electric Boilers: There are no harmful gases given off from electric boilers which means safety checks are not necessary. Electric boilers present no risks of carbon monoxide poisoning, explosions or leaks.

Maintenance

Gas Boilers: Gas boilers are made up of numerous moving parts so, to make sure they are functioning safely, efficiently and correctly, it is necessary to arrange an annual service. Quite often parts will need replacing.

Electric Boilers: With next to no moving parts, electric boilers can be deemed virtually maintenance free. It can however be advantageous to arrange an annual check just to ensure all is well and that the boiler will serve you efficiently throughout the winter.

Electric or Gas Boiler?

It is entirely up to you! But if some useful advice based around your particular needs would be beneficial, please get in touch!

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