How Do Electric & Gas Appliances Compare?
Maximizing the Value of Propane for Your Home
Whether you are refurbishing your existing home, shopping for a new place, or just looking for ways to reduce your carbon footprint, propane provides great value when it comes to powering many of the appliances around your home.
If you’ve never lived in a propane-fueled home before, you might be surprised to know how versatile it is and how many ways it can be used in your home. Not only can propane provide steady, reliable heat energy at an affordable price, but it also offers exceptional performance and efficiency in a wide range of home appliances at a much lower cost than electricity.
Here are a few of the pros and cons of each:
Benefits of Propane Appliances
- Propane generates more Btus than an equivalent amount of electricity, and it delivers more than twice the Btus of natural gas, so you need much less propane to produce the same amount of heat or energy.
- Propane doesn’t produce significant carbon dioxide; in fact, propane is approved as a “clean fuel” by the US Government.
- Propane is nontoxic and nonpoisonous, so it doesn’t contaminate groundwater or soil if it leaks – which means propane tanks can be safely buried out of sight.
- Propane is super versatile, and can be used to efficiently power other appliances such as ranges, dishwashers, laundry machines, and water heaters as well as grills and fireplaces.
- Propane will power a generator that will keep your home running when the electric lines are down.
- All the propane used in the U.S. is produced in North America. So every gallon of propane you buy contributes to America’s energy independence.
- Installing a propane system may be more cost-effective than hooking up to natural gas.
Cons of Propane Appliances
- Propane produces fewer BTUs per gallon than heating oil—you need to burn more of it to achieve the same amount of heat.
- Propane-burning heating equipment often costs more to purchase than heating oil-based systems.
- Propane is combustible in air, so precautions are needed to operate the equipment safely.
Benefits of Electric Appliances
- Electricity is versatile. You can use it for heat, cooking, lighting, computers and smart phones, televisions, as well as your cooling systems.
- It produces virtually zero emissions when you use it. (Generating it is another story.)
- Electric heating equipment is generally inexpensive and low maintenance.
Downsides of Electric Appliances
- Electric heat takes much longer to reach a comfortable temperature and can struggle to maintain it—driving up your energy usage—and your utility bill! Even without geopolitics driving energy costs up, electricity will cost you more.
- Electric heat pumps rely on outdoor air, which means they become less able to keep your home warm the lower the temperature goes. In fact, many homes with electric heat pumps need to have supplemental heat sources as a backup.
- Electric generation is the second-largest creator of greenhouse gasses in the United States. That’s because most of our electricity supply is generated by coal-fired power plants. More than 63% of our electricity comes from burning fossil fuels, mostly coal and natural gas. Only the transportation sector creates more greenhouse gases.
The Bottom Line
If you’re looking to enhance your home’s value and improve efficiency, updating or adding propane appliances is a savvy move. Propane offers more bang for your buck, all while protecting the environment. It’s a win-win if you care about the environment, but also want to keep costs under control.
Whether you’re ready to make the switch, or have more questions, the professionals at Thomas Brothers have the knowledge, experience and resources to answer all your questions about the benefits of propane for your home. And, you can count on us for reliable propane delivery and more. Contact us for more information today.