Gas vs. electric range - A person cooking in the home kitchen using a gas range

Gas vs. electric range: Which fits your kitchen needs?

Comparing gas and electric ranges based on cost, energy efficiency, cooking performance, and more.

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Key Facts

  • A gas range is a cooking appliance powered by natural gas or propane.
  • An electric range is a kitchen device that uses electrical resistance to generate heat.

Picking between a gas vs. electric range is essential for anyone who loves to cook, as it greatly impacts the kitchen experience. Whether you're making pancakes on Sunday morning or searing steak for dinner, the type of range you choose can affect the outcome of your dishes.

This guide will break down the pros and cons of both options so it's easier for you to decide which is the best fit for your kitchen. Ultimately, the goal is to choose an appliance that not only helps you cook delicious meals but also makes the cooking process enjoyable.

What is a gas range?Gas vs electric range - A person turning on their gas range

A gas range operates on natural gas or propane supplied through your home's gas line to instantly light up its burners. When you turn on the knob, gas flows and ignites, producing an immediate flame. This allows for quick adjustments in heat. You turn it higher for a rapid boil or lower for a slow simmer.

This level of precision and the ability to instantly modify heat levels is why many chefs and cooking lovers prefer it. Also, in case of power outages, a gas range can still be used, making it very useful when you can't use an electric stove.

What is an electric range?

Gas vs electric range - Electric ceramic stove inside the kitchen

An electric range, often referred to as an electric kitchen stove, relies on electrical resistance to cook food. You won't find flames here. Instead, electric coils or a smooth, flat surface heats up at the touch of a button or turn of a knob.

One of the biggest perks of an electric range is even heating. The electric hob is known for distributing heat more evenly than gas, making it ideal for bakers and anyone who appreciates precision in their cooking.

Plus, cleaning is a breeze, especially if you've got a model with a smooth top. And, if you're all about keeping your energy usage in check, many electric ranges come with efficient settings that might just help shave a bit off your bills.

Gas range vs. electric: Which is the better choice?

Choosing between an electric stove or gas stove for your kitchen can feel like picking a favorite recipe—it's not easy, and everyone has their opinion. This comparison guide will simmer down the key factors like cost-effectiveness, cooking methods, and energy efficiency to help you make a decision.

In terms of cost

Gas vs electric range - A family choosing their new range

Your budget would significantly impact your considerations between gas and electric ranges. Both basic models start at around $500 to $1,000. 

Electric stoves with induction hobs and fan-assisted ovens can cost from $1,000 to $2,000. Meanwhile, their gas counterparts, priced between $1,200 and $2,500, provide decent features that can cater to most cooking needs without breaking the bank.

Both electric and gas range prices can exceed $2,000. Some can even cost as much as $10,000 to $12,000, depending on the brand and features. However, if you don’t need luxurious finishes and gourmet features, they won’t really be worth the money.

Recommendation: A basic gas range is the most affordable option. 

In terms of energy efficiency

When it comes to energy efficiency, an electric cooking stove has the edge. They convert almost all the electricity they consume directly into heat, with little to no waste. Inverter models are also available, which can save energy by adjusting the heating element's power according to your cooking needs.

So, which is cheaper to run, a gas or electric cooker? Despite electric ranges being more efficient, gas variants often cost less to operate because natural gas prices tend to be lower than electricity rates. However, it's worth noting that they're not quite as good at evenly distributing heat across your cookware. 

Recommendation: Electric cookers are more energy-efficient. 

In terms of cooking performance

Gas vs electric range - A person in apron standing next to a range and preparing spaghetti

Each type of stove has its fans and detractors when it comes to cooking performance. Gas ranges offer instant heat and more precise temperature control, which is why many professional chefs prefer them. You can crank up the flame for a fierce boil or dial it down to a simmer in seconds.

On the flip side, electric cooking surfaces can respond slowly when you need to change temperatures quickly. That's a downside if you're trying to sear a steak and immediately want to lower the heat for a slow simmer.

However, they also tend to heat more evenly. That means your pancakes or grilled cheese sandwiches might come out more uniformly cooked with less risk of hot spots. Plus, electric stoves maintain low heat better, so they're ideal for dishes that need gentle, consistent warmth. 

Recommendation: If fast, precise heat control is important to you, gas might be the better option. But if even heating and low-heat maintenance are your priorities, go with an electric range.

In terms of cooking methods

When cooking on an electric stove vs. gas, it’s important to note that both types have distinctly different cooking styles and outcomes. With gas models, you'll find that they heat up faster and offer quicker preheat times. Meanwhile, cooking on an electric stove vs. gas means dealing with a slower start.

The difference between the gas or electric oven appliances becomes apparent when broiling or roasting. A gas oven provides a more moist environment due to combustion. That's why it's great for high-heat cooking methods like searing, stir-frying, and wok cooking.

On the other hand, electric ovens excel in providing dry heat. This makes it perfect for light and gentle cooking methods like melting, simmering, baking, and broiling. 

Stovetop cooking also has its nuances when comparing the two. Gas stoves transfer heat via actual flame, while electric stoves go through a heating element. That means the heat source on gas stoves is more direct, allowing for more control and precision in cooking. Electric stoves, however, offer smoother, consistent cooking zones with no risk of flame flare-ups or uneven hot spots.  

Recommendation: Gas may be the better option for dishes requiring precise temperatures. But, if you often bake or broil, electric cookers might be more suitable.

In terms of assembly and installation

Gas vs electric range - A person installing a new gas range

When it comes to the installation of these appliances, gas ranges often require a bit more effort than electric ones. You'll need a gas line in place, which might not be ideal if you’re avoiding the extra work or the high cost. It'll almost guarantee an overhaul, and it's wise to note that major kitchen renovations cost $5,000 to $60,000 in the US.

Electric ranges, on the other hand, are pretty much ready to use as long as you’ve got the right power outlet. They’re a breeze to install, making them a go-to for folks who want to keep things simple.

It’s worth considering your long-term convenience, too. With a gas range, you'll need to check on the gas connection now and then. Electric ranges don’t demand as much, giving you one less thing to worry about in your busy life. 

Recommendation: If you're on a tight budget and want a quick installation, an electric variant may be better. 

In terms of safety

Regarding safety, it's hard not to worry a bit more about gas ranges. You have the risk of gas leaks, which can lead to fires or explosions if not caught in time. Plus, some states, like New York, even went as far as banning gas-powered appliances in residential buildings.

On the flip side, electric ranges offer a sigh of relief. There's no gas to leak, which means a lower fire risk. You're also not shooting those pesky pollutants into your kitchen when you boil water.

However, you still have to watch out for electrical issues, which can lead to fires if your system's not up-to-code or the range is improperly installed. On your average cooking day, though, an electric range remains safer than a gas counterpart. This is especially true when you think about the long-term effects of those invisible harmful particles that come from gas on your health. 

Recommendation: An electric range is generally safer for your health and home in the long run.

Ensure an expert range installation with Airtasker

Yes, deciding between a gas and electric range is difficult. Once you've made your choice, though, the next step is even more crucial—ensuring a professional appliance installation.

Fortunately, the Airtasker platform lets you effortlessly post a task outlining your needs, whether it's for disassembling your old setup or specialist services like gas oven installation and repair. If you end up with an electric range, you can also hire local electricians on the site.

Connect with skilled professionals who can handle these tasks efficiently on Airtasker. Ensure your new range is set up safely and correctly so you can focus on whipping delicious meals. 

Gas vs. electric range

Gas Range
Electric Range
Both the appliance and installation can be costly

Generally cheaper, and there’s no need to pay for installation

Energy Efficiency
Less efficient, but gas is cheaper to run
More efficient, but higher electricity cost
Cooking Performance
Instant heat; provides precise temperature control
Slower heating time; provides even temperature across the cooking surface
Cooking Methods
Perfect for high-heat cooking methods
Perfect for gentle cooking methods
Assembly and Installation
Requires gas line, professional installation
Simpler setup
Risk of gas leaks and indoor pollution
Lower fire risk, no gas-related pollutants

FAQs on gas and electric ranges

The main disadvantages include potential safety risks such as gas leaks, the cost of gas installation, and poor energy efficiency compared to electric ovens.

The key difference is how they generate heat. An induction hob uses electromagnetic energy to heat pots and pans directly, while an electric hob heats up an element that then transfers heat to the cookware.

Most chefs tend to prefer gas stoves for their instant heat control and ability to cook more evenly. It's also easier to see the flame and make adjustments as needed. 

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