Propane vs Electric for Heating | Haigood & Campbell
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Propane vs Electric for Heating

Comparing Cost & Efficiency

Simply put . . . propane is a more efficient, and so it is more economical than electric.

Electricity is generally created in power stations that burn some type of fuel, be it natural gas or coal. While both of these are effective at producing energy, energy is lost and an incredible electrical infrastructure is required to deliver that energy to your home.

Propane, on the other hand, is converted directly from fuel to heat right in your home.  That alone explains why propane is more efficient than electricity.  And practically any heat-producing appliance in your home that runs on electricity, can run on propane at a lower operating cost than electric.  That includes your hot water heater, HVAC furnace system, clothes dryer, and even your fireplace (which electricity can’t do at all).

Propane heat beats electric heat in every factor:

  • Propane is cheaper than electric:  According to the U.S. Department of Energy, heating a home with propane in recent years has cost far less than heating with electricity. Even more surprising by many people is that propane water heaters can cost 30% less to operate because they can heat water twice as fast.
  • Propane heated air is warmer than electric: A propane furnace heats air to about 130°F to 140°F and operates in short intervals to minimize operating costs. An electric heat pump produces heat below body temperature , so the air actually feels cool when placing your hand in front of a vent.
  • Propane furnaces last longer than electric heat pumps: On average, propane furnaces will last 5 to 10 years longer than electric heat pumps.
  • Propane is more dependable than electric: While your electric appliances rely on the entire support structure delivering energy, propane tanks are safely stored on your property and keep the heat flowing even when power lines are down and your lights are off.
  • Propane is clean: Propane has long been recognized as “green energy”. Propane is an approved alternative fuel listed in both the Clean Air Act of 1990 and the National Energy Policy Act of 1992.  Because propane is a gas, you don’t have to worry about a spill leaving residue . . . it evaporates into the air.
  • Propane is safe: Propane has quite a remarkable safety record, due in large part to the stringent codes and regulations developed by the propane industry and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Propane gas is nontoxic and produces minimal emissions, and is not harmful to soil or water. With propane, what you see is what you get. While electricity is measured in hard-to-understand “kilowatt hours,” propane is measured in familiar “gallons.”
  • Propane is customer-friendly: With propane, you get 24/7 customer service and support from your local Haigood & Campbell team, – who all live and work where you do – not from the big power companies.

For the same heating value, propane offers remarkable savings and benefits over electricity, even when you break it down by appliance:

Propane gas furnaces

  • Consistently supply air at 120°F. Electric heat pumps dispense 95°F air, which is less than body temperature, so the air feels cool, not warm.
  • Last an average of 20 years, while electric heat pumps last an average of 12 years.
  • Have lower repair costs than electric heat pumps

Propane gas water heaters

  • Cost approximately $10 less per month to operate than comparable electric units
  • On average are 40% less expensive than electric heaters. Over an average life span, they can save homeowners nearly $2,000 more than an electric unit
  • Heat more than twice as much water in an hour as comparable electric models

Propane gas-burning fireplaces

  • Cost between 30% and 60% less per hour of operation than wood-burning fireplaces (depending on wood costs)
  • Emit 40 times fewer emissions than wood-burning units and costs less to operate
  • They can be turned off easily with a switch, eliminating concern about remaining hot coals

Propane gas-burning cooktops and ovens

  • Offer instant heat and absolute temperature control — 97% of professional chefs prefer cooking with gas
  • Propane gas clothes dryers
  • Can complete drying tasks in approximately three-quarters of the time it takes an electric unit
  • Some models save up to 65% in costs over electric dryers due to their speed and efficient heat conversion

Start saving on your electric bills and switch to propane today!

Call your nearest Haigood & Campbell office to speak with a Propane Specialist who can answer your questions about making the switch today.