Many consumers buy electric hot water heaters simply because they do not like the hassle of a gas appliance in their home, especially one that could possibly leak gas, ignite or require complicated movements to get down on the floor and re-ignite the pilot light.
For these homeowners, electric hot water heaters are the best option.
When to Buy an Electric Heater
For homeowners that want the lowest price for a new model and installation, an electric heater also makes the most sense. That’s because the prices for electric hot water heaters are often hundreds of dollars lower than for gas models, especially when installation costs are added in.
Electric heaters are both less expensive to buy and less expensive to install, because putting them in is far simpler than for gas heaters. There are no holes to cut in the wall for gas ventilation and no inspections required after the job is done, in most cases. Some homeowners opt to install electric hot water heaters themselves, saving almost all installation costs; this rarely occurs when gas is involved.
If you are replacing an electric heater with another electric heater, your costs will be far lower than if you opt for a gas model—the hardware will probably already be in place for an easy installation.
Price Range for Electric Water Heaters
You can find electric hot water heaters for as little as $200 on the market, but you should plan on paying about $400 for a quality brand. If you opt for a very large electric water heater, then you might spend up to $700 on certain brands.
Installation can run another $200-$400.
The disadvantages of buying electric in terms of finance don’t begin to factor in until the unit has run for several years.
Buying prices may be lower, but it costs up to three times as much to heat water with electricity than with gas, at present.
Therefore, over several years time (three or more), an electric hot water heater actually becomes more expensive than a gas water heater.
If upfront costs are not an issue and you plan on staying in your home for a long time (and you don’t mind having a gas appliance in the home or re-lighting the pilot light now and then), then a gas water heater makes more sense economically. If even the sound of gas bothers you, then the largely noise-free electric model will be your choice.
What price can you put on peace of mind?