When it comes to heating and cooking in your home, the current debate that is on everyone’s minds is whether gas or electricity is better. Today we are going to dive into this topic so that you can make a more informed decision when it comes to your own home. There are many factors that come into play when you ask questions like that but we are going to do our best to outline the most pressing pros and cons for each so that you can more easily make a decision.
Where you live is the biggest factor in the Electricity vs. Gas debate
Before you really dive down the rabbit hole on this subject it is important to take into account that whether electricity or gas is better for you is relative to where you live. This is because the distance you live from distribution centers, the local economics, and even terrain can change the price and availability of each resource making it necessary to make a case-by-case analysis of every situation.
Gas, also known as natural gas, is a mainstay in our American society and its presence can be seen and felt in homes all across the nation from Alaska to Alabama, and while there are many pros to natural gas there are still many cons to it as well. Let’s take a look at these pros and cons and see what we can deduce about using natural gas in your home.
When you compare the price of gas to electricity, on average it is quite clear that gas is less expensive than electricity. Now like we said that is dependent on where you live. If you live far away from where the gas is produced stored and distributed it is going to cost more to get it to you. However, where you live will also dictate which company you buy it through and each company is different, they will charge different amounts from each other.
Ease of access
The use of natural gas has been around for a very long time. People have been using natural gas to cook in and heat their homes for over a hundred years. Because of this long history, most houses are already outfitted to accept natural gas from a local provider. This makes it very easy for people to use gas in their homes. Even if you are planning to build a home, most contractors and gas providers know the drill, no pun intended and can hook you up with a gas heat or cooking system without a problem.
Can be stored and shipped
Another great pro of gas is that it is easy to store and ship. The ability to store and move gas is much more doable than other forms of energy — as you will see later. Natural gas can be stored and moved to the heart’s content of the owner without any trouble so if it is taken out of the ground it won’t go to waste.
Natural gas can be pretty dangerous stuff for many reasons. The most common of which is the fact that it is poisonous if inhaled. So, if the natural gas were to be leaking into your house and you didn’t catch it soon enough you and everyone else in your home could die. Now the reason why this is so bad is because in its original form natural gas has no odor or taste so if it is in your home you could be inhaling it and not even notice. To combat this, producers of natural gas add another chemical to their product to make it have a bad odor so you are more likely to notice it if it enters your home.
Then there is the fact that it is a flammable gas. If gas is leaking in your home and it happens to ignite, there is a possibility that it could explode. This is not common, but it still is a possibility. This gas is not something to take lightly; it needs to be handled with respect and caution.
Another major problem that comes from using natural gas to cook in and heat your home is that eventually, we will run out of natural gas. It is a nonrenewable resource. If you build your house to accept natural gas there may come a day where it becomes obsolete. While it isn’t estimated that natural gas will run out anytime soon, it can run out and that is what worries some people.
Bad impact on the environment
Then there is the impact it has on the environment. While it may not seem like much there is a negative impact on the environment when it comes to burning natural gas.
Electricity is not a new concept for homes. For a long time now electricity has been used in new homes and old homes for lighting and powering appliances, but using it instead of natural gas for heating and cooking is still a new concept.
The biggest pro for a lot of people when they look at electricity is that it is safer than natural gas. You can’t have an electricity leak that will explode or poison. It doesn’t work like that. Now, there is the possibility of being electrocuted if you come in contact with your electricity, but, again, there won’t be any deadly gas that you might breathe in, nor is there any large earth shattering explosion to throw your house off its foundation.
Possibly has less of an impact on the environment
Using electricity to heat your home and to cook in your home does not have a large negative effect on the environment. Electricity has zero emissions so that is something you won’t have to worry about. Now, it is important to make sure we explain that this is when you use electricity not when electricity is made. There are many ways that electricity can be produced that have horrible effects on the environment, but there are also many ways that it can be produced that don’t have damages on the environment as well.
Depending on how electricity is produced it can be a pretty renewable resource. This is because you can get electricity from the sun, from wind, and even from the flow of a river. If these methods are used you can see electricity as a method of heating your home for many, many years to come.
The biggest con for electrical heating and cooking systems is that it can cost more. Now, this is on average. Remember what we said earlier? Depending on where you live you may not see a huge difference in the price of electricity to the price of gas. However, there are many places in the United States, Boise included, where electricity is more expensive than gas.
Requires backup systems
One problem that arises from using electricity to cook especially is that if the power goes out you have no way of cooking food. This means that it is imperative that everyone who uses electrical cooking devices has either a secondary way to cook or a backup generator. When it comes to backup generators you need to make sure that you have it hooked up to your electrical systems by a professional before disaster hits and that can be a bit of a hefty bill. So, while you are saving money for a generator it is probably best that you buy a charcoal barbecue or something else that can cook on fuel instead of electricity.
Gas and electricity both play a very big role in our lives today and whether one is better than the other is still up for debate. Like we said at the beginning, though, what is right for your home depends on where you live and many other circumstances.
To learn more about your house and how you can get the home of your dreams give us a call or shoot us an email today at the Hughes Group. We are always willing to field any questions you may have.