Electric Vs. Gas Boilers: What’s The Difference?

If you’re looking to have a new boiler installed, you’ll already be preparing to make quite the investment, so you’ll want to make sure that you are absolutely sure before you commit to decision.


Of course, there are several different sub-categories of boilers to be decided between but the first choice you’ll need to make is between installing an electric boiler vs. a gas one.


There are a few things to keep in mind whilst you decide, such as the pros and cons of each, as well as the running costs and potential repair costs.


In order to help you decide, here is our rundown of the differences between electric boilers and gas boilers.


Gas Boilers


Gas boilers burn natural gases in order to create heat for use in central heating and water supply. This gas is supplied to homes via an energy supplier through the gas network, though homes which are not connected to the gas network can still use a gas boiler.


Gas boilers are the most commonly used within the UK, with around 23 million homes using gas boilers over electric – that’s around 80% of all the gas systems in the UK. That’s not to say that gas boilers are automatically better, but they are certainly different.


So, what are the pros and cons of gas boilers?



  • Gas is supplied as and when needed, so hot water and central heating is more accessible and readily available
  • Gas is often cheaper than electricity, though this depends on your individual household’s usage of both
  • As gas boilers are more common, customers have a greater range to choose from
  • Replacements are often more accessible and affordable if replacing your gas boiler with the same model



  • There is generally a higher risk of gas boilers suffering faults which need repairs to be completed
  • Gas boilers are generally larger units and take up more space than the average electric boiler unit
  • There is a risk, albeit very small, of a gas leak occurring within your property if there is a fault
  • Gas boilers need to be serviced at least once a year, sometimes even as a condition of keeping your boiler’s warranty valid


As you can see, whilst used the most often within the UK, gas boilers do have their disadvantages – however, no system is perfect and the pros are certainly worth taking note of, too.


Electric Boilers


Whilst gas boilers need electricity in order to operate, they do not use the electricity as fuel. Electric boilers, however, use electricity to supply hot water and central heating instead of burning natural gasses.


Electric boilers are the less common boiler type used within the UK, though there are reasons why some homeowners favour these boilers over their gas counterparts.


So, how are electric boilers different to gas boilers – and what are the benefits of choosing an electric boiler system instead?



  • No risk of gas or carbon monoxide leaks within your home as they do not use any gases to operate
  • Generally much quieter in-use than gas boilers
  • Considered to be more environmentally friendly, as they do not cause any carbon emissions
  • Usually less at risk of boiler faults developing



  • Often more expensive to run than a gas boiler
  • Often unable to provide enough heating and hot water for a larger property or multiple occupant household
  • Electric boilers may be a noticeable drain on your home’s electricity supply
  • While the boilers themselves do not cause carbon emissions, electricity production is considered fairly carbon intensive


So, whilst this alternative to the more common gas boiler does have its advantages, there are still plenty of reasons why gas boilers remain the more popular choice.


Gas Vs. Electric Boiler Costs


Saving money can be a huge aspect of the decision making process when choosing a new boiler, so which type of boiler – gas vs. electric – generally works out cheaper?


Firstly, installation costs. These vary depending on both the make and model of your chosen boiler. Electric boilers generally cost more to purchase than gas boilers, costing an average of £1,000, though some select models of gas boilers can cost as much as £2,000 on first purchase.


Then, there’s the installation itself – this depends largely on the installation service that you use. Here at Birmingham Boiler Repairs, we pride ourselves on delivering a fast, effective and affordable service when it comes to both the installation and repairs of boilers, so we may be able to help you greatly.


When it comes down to running costs, electricity is generally more expensive to use than gas. Taking into account that the average home in the UK switches on the heating for around 7 hours a day, that brings the cost of electric boilers to around £23.76 per day – in comparison, a gas boiler may cost around £7.50 when in use for the same amount of time.


Then there’s the need to have a gas boiler serviced in order to keep it in good working order – we like to think we can help you there, as we have years of experience in providing high quality annual service appointments to gas boilers across the Birmingham area.


When it comes down to it, the choice of boiler that you select is entirely up to you and should be chosen based on your individual needs. However, whatever you decide, Birmingham Boiler Repairs are here to cater for your installation, repair and service needs.


If you’re in the Birmingham or the surrounding areas and need any sort of repairs on your gas or electric boiler, get in touch with us today and find out what we could do to help.