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Last updated: 17th April, 2024


Electric Boiler vs Gas Boiler

Electric Boiler vs Gas Boiler

In this article we will discuss the topic of different boiler types, specifically electric boilers vs gas boilers, explaining how each heating system type works as well as their pros, cons and what is the best heating system for your property.

What Is A Gas Boiler, Which Should You Buy?

A gas boiler is exactly what it says on the tin, a boiler system that heats gas in order to warm your home.

The gas initially enters a boiler via the mains or an LPG bottle, the resulting hot water is then fed through the central heating system.

A gas boiler can also provide a direct stream of hot water to outlets such as sink, bath etc (combi boiler) or be stored in a separate water tank/cylinder (system and heat only boiler).

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What Is An Electric Boiler?

An electric boiler is similar to its gas combusting counterpart in the fact it heats up water, but passes an electric current through the water to do so.

Electric boilers then transport the heated water to a properties central heating system, pipes and water outlets. Electric boiler types include combi, storage/dry storage, and electric CPSU(usually commercial).

Comparing Gas vs Electric Boilers


Gas Boilers

Electric Boilers

  • Gas is currently the cheapest fuel on which to run a boiler.

  • Boiler manufacturers claim their electric boilers are almost 100% efficient.

  • Modern gas boilers are often ‘A’ rated in terms of ErP.

  • No risk of potential carbon monoxide leak.

  • Gas boilers heat up a home quicker than other boiler types.

  • Quieter when running compared to most boiler types.

  • Gas is a tried and tested, readily available fuel source.

  • Can be installed anywhere in the home.

  • Replacements in terms of unit for unit tend to be easier.

  • Usually compact in size.

  • Can meet high hot water demands.

  • Annual service is recommended but not required.


Gas Boilers

Electric Boilers

  • Higher initial unit purchase cost.

  • Currently an expensive fuel in terms of boiler running cost.

  • More emissions released than some boiler types.

  • Possibly not suitable for larger homes.

  • Annual service mandatory.

  • The initial production of electricity can be carbon intensive.

Gas Boiler vs Electric Boiler Cost

Initially gas boilers usually demand a higher purchase price per unit than electric boilers, however the difference in running cost may hold the most sway over your opinion.

Gas is currently the cheapest fuel source to power a boiler, and would eventually bridge the gap in initial cost disparity when compared to electric boilers.

Also gas being abundant in terms of ready availability means it is more reliable than electricity which could be subject to potential power cuts.

Gas also has a general wider model selection, meaning there is ample opportunity for a thorough price comparison before committing to a purchase.

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Gas Boiler vs Electric Boiler - What Heats Your Home Faster?

A gas boiler's burner will output maximum heat practically instantly, whereas an electric boiler would not be as fast due to their relatively slower flow rate.

Electric boilers therefore are most productive in homes that require heating over a longer time span or are extremely insulated. 

Solar Panels

Both gas and electric boilers have models in which solar panels can be implemented and utilised to reduce emission release while simultaneously lowering a home's energy bills.

Benefits Of Combi Boilers

Combi boilers are a the most popular choice for both types of fuel for a number of reasons. Unlike conventional boilers, combi (combination) boilers link a home’s central heating system and water heating; no separate hot water tank is needed which is cleaner as it avoids potential rust or debris build up.

This allows a compact boiler which could fit into a standard kitchen cupboard or be wall mounted, to thoroughly heat a home without stealing lots of space.

Combi systems are also easier to service or for boiler replacement due to their popularity, meaning greater availability.

If you need a new combi boiler, check out our definitive 2022 combi guide!

The Verdict - Gas Or Electric Boilers

While both fuel types offer benefits for heating a home, there are contributing factors to consider. Electric boilers do provide a viable and efficient option, however despite low initial unit cost, may prove expensive to run long term and would not prove completely efficient in certain property types; this can include larger properties or homes with an instant, high hot water demand.

Gas heating, although initially a higher cost to install, is a more financially frugal option due to its relatively cheap running cost, also its capabilities of servicing a higher heating and hot water demand make it the most popular boiler fuel type. 

The abundance of gas powered heating systems is due to the well roundedness and applicable functionality of the fuel source, and thus may prove a better complete heating system fuel when taking into account the considerations discussed.

Need A New Boiler?

If you’ve liked what you've been reading and want an old boiler replaced, or just fancy an upgrade, get a fixed price, free quote on a wide selection of boilers with gas safe registered installation here at iHeat.


At iHeat all of our subcontracted engineers are Gas Safe registered and can service your boiler swiftly and safely. Prices of an expert boiler service with iHeat start from £99.These figures might fluctuate regionally and can also depend on the specific type of boiler you own, such as a combi, gas, or oil boiler. 

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iHeat New Boiler Costs

Boilers can be a daunting purchase for many people as they’re an appliance with a lot of responsibility, providing heat for you and your family is something you want to get right. Boilers aren’t exactly a quickly disposable item either, potentially lasting you a decade.

Effectively, new boiler cost can be split into two segments: the first is the actual boiler itself (unit price), and the second is the cost of the boiler being installed (set up) in your property by an expert engineer. 

Here at iHeat, we want to remove all of this undue stress and make the decision making process of upgrading to a new central heating system, as easy as possible.

Boiler costs can vary depending on a number of factors including their brand, model, fuel, output, warranty, labour and installation type. Typically a new boiler will cost between £1,845 and £3,500, below is a list of average boiler installations offered by iHeat (guide only).

Installation Type

Price (inc VAT)

Combi to combi swap


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System to combi conversion


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New boiler install


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Back boiler to a combi


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System to system


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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Cheaper to Run, a Gas or Electric Boiler?

Generally, gas boilers are cheaper to run compared to electric boilers. This is mainly due to the lower cost of gas compared to electricity in most regions. Gas boilers tend to have higher thermal efficiency and the fuel they use costs less per kilowatt-hour, which results in lower operating costs.

What are the Disadvantages of Electric Boilers?

Electric boilers have several disadvantages:

  • Higher Operating Costs: Electricity tends to be more expensive than gas, making the running costs of electric boilers higher.
  • Less Efficient for Larger Homes: Electric boilers can be less efficient in larger homes or in areas where temperatures are significantly low, as they may struggle to meet higher heating demands efficiently.
  • Dependency on Electrical Supply: Unlike gas boilers, electric boilers rely solely on your home’s electrical supply. In areas with unstable power or frequent outages, this could be problematic.
  • Limited Hot Water Supply: Electric boilers can sometimes struggle to supply large amounts of hot water compared to gas systems, particularly in larger households or for systems without an adequate hot water tank.

What is Better, Electric Boiler or Gas Boiler?

Overall, gas boilers tend to be better for most households due to several advantages:

  • Cost-Effectiveness: Gas is usually cheaper than electricity, making gas boilers more economical to operate.
  • Greater Efficiency: Gas boilers generally provide more heat and use less energy, making them ideal for larger homes or colder climates.
  • Faster Heating: Gas boilers heat water faster than electric boilers, providing hot water more efficiently and in a more timely manner.
  • Reliability: Gas boilers are not dependent on the electrical supply and will continue to operate during a power outage, assuming they have a power-independent control system.

Why Don't We Use Electric Boilers?

Electric boilers are less commonly used primarily due to their higher operational costs and some practical limitations in heating capacity and efficiency. They are often more suitable for smaller homes or apartments where space and heating demands are limited. In regions with higher electricity costs, the running costs of electric boilers can be significantly high, making them less popular than gas alternatives.

Should I Replace My Gas Boiler with Electric?

Replacing a gas boiler with an electric boiler might be considered for environmental reasons or if gas is not available. However, you should consider the higher running costs and ensure that the electric system can meet your home's heating demands effectively. It’s also important to consider the long-term cost implications and any potential changes in energy prices.

Can an Electric Boiler Fill a Bath?

Yes, an electric boiler can fill a bath, but the time it takes and the efficiency depend on the boiler’s capacity and the size of the hot water tank if one is used. For larger baths or simultaneous usage (like showers running at the same time), it’s important to ensure that the boiler’s output and tank capacity are adequately sized to meet the demand.

Stephen Day profile photo
Article by
Stephen Day | Co-founder
Gas Safe registered and FGAS certified engineer with over 20 years experience in the heating and cooling industry.