Updated: June 13, 2024

Gas boilers are very common across the UK. They run on natural gas that is automatically supplied from the national gas grid. However, electric boilers are increasing in popularity as well. They are a good boiler option and worth considering. 

Electric boilers do not burn fossil fuels so they are considered to be a low carbon heating option for homeowners. They run on electricity taken from the national network or they can use electricity produced by solar panels. 

In this article we are going to explore the difference between both types and see which one is cheaper to run and which one is more environmentally friendly. 

Advantages of electric boilers 

Electric boilers can reduce your carbon footprint since they do not burn fossil fuels. However, they can only achieve zero-emissions performance if they use electricity coming from renewable sources such as solar panels. That is why electric boilers are compatible to work with solar panel systems. 

When it comes to efficiency, electric boilers have the highest efficiency rates. They stand at 99%. Energy wastage is always kept at minimum with an electric boiler.

What is more, electric boilers are ideal for remote homes that are not connected to the national gas grid, given that the property is mot too big with a very high demand for hot water and central heating. 

With electric boilers you wouldn’t have to worry about carbon monoxide leak. Electric boilers also have fewer parts which means they are less prone to malfunction. That is why they are easier to maintain. 

Electric boilers operate very quietly. Their compact size and their flexibility make them both cheaper and easier to install. They don’t require a flue pipe as well. 

Read about: Common Sime Boiler Error Codes

Electric vs Gas Boilers

Advantages of gas boilers

On the other hand, gas boilers are the cheapest way available to heat a home. They are more affordable to run. In the UK, there are more options for gas boilers available on the market so you will have more choices. 

What is more, gas boilers have a wide range of maximum output ratings. Their range starts from 9kW to 150kW. And this wide range of outputs make gas boilers suitable for various home types, including very large properties with high demand for hot water and central heating. 

Disadvantages of electric boilers

Since electricity is more expensive than natural gas, electric boilers running costs can be quite high. Furthermore, while they are good for small homes, they aren’t so great for large homes with a high demand for hot water. However, there are some electric boiler models that can be suitable for a house with 5 bedrooms. 

Although electric boilers don’t burn fossil fuels, they still use electricity to run. So unless they use a renewable energy source, they won’t be zero-emissions free. 

Disadvantages of gas boilers 

Gas boilers burn fossil fuels. They are one of the most significant contributors to CO2 emissions. You might want to replace your gas boiler with a heat pump if that is your concern. 

Gas boilers are prone to a carbon monoxide leak if they are defective. Carbon monoxide is quite dangerous. It is odourless and can cause brain damage or even death in some cases. 

Gas boilers have more moving parts that can wear out over time. So a gas boiler should be serviced once a year to keep it working smoothly. 

Read more: Professional & Reliable Boiler Repair

New Boiler Cost

Which boiler is cheaper to run gas or electric?

Although electric boilers are very efficient, they can still be expensive to run. This is due to the high prices of electricity across the UK. 

Gas, on the other hand, is much cheaper and that is why gas boilers are the most common across the UK. 

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Do electric or gas boilers heat my home better?

Both gas and electric boilers can do a great job heating your home. Their effectiveness is relevant to your home’s heating requirements and demand. 

Generally speaking, gas boilers are more powerful and are well suited to meet the high water demand of a large property. 

What is the cost of installing gas and electric boilers?

Gas and electric boilers have a similar price range. However, gas boilers might be cheaper due to their abundance and various brands. The price of a new boiler, gas or electric, can be from £500 to £2,000.

In addition to the boiler price, there is also the price of installation. The price of a boiler installation can vary accordingly to different factors such as:

  • Boiler size
  • Boiler location 
  • Any additional pipework 

The price of boiler installation can be from £500 to £1,000.

Electric boilers can be cheaper when it comes to the price of installation. They do not require a flue or condensate pipes. You can install them almost anywhere. 

Read more:

Do Electric Boilers Need Servicing?

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Worcester Bosch Greenstar 8000 Life Combi Boiler Review 


Which boiler is more efficient, gas or electric?

Electric boilers are more efficient than gas boilers. They have a very high efficiency rate of %99. 

Which boiler is cheaper to run, gas or electric?

In the UK, gas is much cheaper than electricity. As a result, gas boilers are cheaper to run than electric boilers.

How much is an electric boiler?

Electric boilers can cost between £500 to £2,000 without the cost of installation. 

What are the advantages of electric boilers?

Electric boilers are
Highly efficient
Low carbon footprint 
Compatible with solar panels 
Zero risks of CO leaks