The Relative Efficiency of Gas and Electric Ovens


Since electric ovens began to appear in large numbers, there has been considerable debate as to whether they have a greater advantage to gas-type units. Today, with concern about having energy efficient appliances, that debate continues to rage.
In terms of product cost, electric ovens are generally less expensive. Operational costs are also generally less.

However, natural gas prices can vary from place to place, and can also be seasonally affected, because natural gas is used for general heating purposes during the winter months and in colder climates. In “all-electric” homes, consideration has to be made for installation of a gas line if a gas stove in the kitchen is desired. Homes are generally already equipped with electricity.
The costs of operation are lower with gas stoves because they do not require time to heat up, and for that reason are more widely used in restaurants.

Energy efficiency is lost somewhat in electric ovens because of the longer heat-up time. In terms of actual usage, heat produced by gas stoves is spread out more evenly, although electric stoves offer more precise temperature control. Also, electric stoves are often considered as more energy efficient appliances because they are cleaner, and they also require less frequent maintenance.

And although heat produced by electric units is more contained, gas stoves release considerable residual heat. This means that while gas stoves may be more hospitable to the environment in general, they can heat up the immediate area, requiring fans or air-conditioning to reduce. The result can be greater energy use.