Gas vs electric heating – what’s cheaper?

With energy prices set to rise in January 2023, heating our homes without spending a fortune is on everyone’s minds as we move into the new year. As far as gas or electric heating, what’s the best option? Let’s have a look:

The difference between gas and electric heating

A gas system consists of a single boiler that heats up water and then pumps it through pipes to radiators throughout the property. It also provides hot water to the kitchen and bathrooms.

Electric heaters don’t require flue or pipework, only a connection to the electric circuit. They don’t burn fuel to generate heat and can be used for both air and water products.

Pros and cons

Gas heating – pros

  • Quick to reach temperature – as long as your system is well-maintained.
  • Easy to repair – the most commonly used system in the UK, with many professionals familiar with systems and expertise to sort our problems.
  • Low ongoing costs – a cheaper energy source than electricity.
  • Tailor to property – large choice when it comes to styles, finishes and colours.

Gas heating – cons

  • High initial cost – a brand new heating system (boilers, multiple radiators, copper piping etc.) plus installation is expensive.
  • Annual maintenance – a boiler and its components need to be checked and maintained by a Gas Safe Registered engineer every 12 months.
  • Less efficient – up to 50% of the heat produced by a boiler can be lost through the pipes.
  • Shorter lifespan – a gas boiler lasts around 15 years before it requires replacing.

Electric heating – pros

  • Easy to install – simple connection to power supply.
  • Low initial cost – no complicated installation work required.
  • Easy to maintain – minimal components to go wrong and you don’t need an annual system check.
  • Highly efficient –100% efficient; every watt of energy used by the heater is converted into heat.
  • Longer life span – expected to last longer than gas heaters.

Electric heating – cons

  • Slow to reach temperature – think about how much quicker water boils on a gas hob as opposed to an electric ring.
  • High ongoing cost – a unit of electricity costs more than a unit of gas.


Prices are in flux but according to Ofgem Energy Price Guarantee ( that came in on 1 October 2022:


  • Gas heating: 10p/unit
  • Electric heating: 34p/unit


  • Gas heating: low range – £4,500, high range – £6,000, average – £5,250
  • Electric heating: low range – £3,230, high range – £4,350, average – £3,790


*The cost of the installation will depend on the complexity of the size of the property.

For more detailed information about costing and the differences between gas and electric heating, visit and, and for all your energy-related needs, contact the team at AACooper on 01689 485007 or