To most commercial and residential property owners around Humble, the common ideal is that electric heating is a more economically sound choice than gas. It would seem that electricity would be cheaper to run than gas with a much reduced strain on the environment to boot. As it turns out though, many of these property owners are finding out that gas heating from an efficient furnace actually provides savings over electricity. Therefore the switch from an electric furnace to a gas one is gaining steam.
Why Switch to Natural Gas
Something to be considered is that when switching over to natural gas (or installing in a new house) you can also convert the water heater, dryer, and other appliances which is where you receive your cost savings. Gas is about 3-4 times cheaper than electricity (4p/kWh to 15p/kWh) and the savings could possible reach up to $1,500 per year when switching the meters from electric to gas. The reason for the savings is because gas is more efficient – approximately 90% reaches you compared to about 30% of the energy used to create electricity.
For some homeowners the cost alone is reason enough to convert from gas to electric heat but it is by far not the only benefit. For those who cook often at home, a gas stove offers more dialed in control over temperatures and pots and pans get heated more evenly which results in a better tasting meal. Many homeowners also feel that gas water heaters deliver a more constant supply of warm water than their electric counterparts. Gas appliances can also be used when the power is out – something electric units cannot boast.
Can Your Home Accommodate Natural Gas?
Before pondering over the question of whether to switch to gas from electric, you need to make sure the option is a capability. For instance, a main gas line needs to be in the vicinity and there needs to be an unobstructed path from pipe to home. Most developments are natural gas capable but cabins or farmland may not be.
Should You Convert?
Once you know you can make the conversion, the next question to ask is should you? The ultimate decision comes down to a customer by customer basis and your current situation. Are your electric bills manageable because of low usage/a small household? Will the conversion require switching out of appliances that are less than five years old? Will your potential savings ever recoup the initial costs for trenching, gas line installation, new appliances, etc? Do you currently have an electric forced air furnace or are do you have radiators and electric baseboards?
Many of these costs can be recouped monthly with lower utility bills but also depend on how much longer you plan to occupy the property. That being said, gas over electric heating is a selling point which drives up market value and may lure potential buyers so the reclaim may be sooner than expected. Some energy saving rebates are also available for conversion from electric to gas.
We understand there are many things to consider in the debate of gas or electric furnace and appliances in your home. Feel free to contact us for more specific information about your exact situation.