Pam Barclay on February 5, 2015 0 Comments It is important to think about purchasing a new range before you go for it. Are you an aspiring home chef or a busy parent who needs to cook dinner every night? Do energy costs matter to you? Do you live off the main grid? What is your budget for upfront installation, and how much do you want to spend on energy bills later on? Also, what risks are associated with each type of range? Numerous factors should be taken into account before you decide to invest in a new gas or electric range. But, first, you need to understand a few basics about the installation process for your home and explore what’s available in your price range. Installing Gas Ranges & Electric Ranges Installing a new gas range can be difficult, and the level of difficulty (and corresponding costs) varies depending on how your kitchen is set up. For example, a new gas line almost always requires professional installation. You can, however, install a gas range by yourself if your kitchen is already equipped with the correct gas line. It is fairly easy to install an electric range. Plug it in to the right outlet, and you are ready to cook. The only potentially tricky part of installing a new electric range can occur if your kitchen is not already outfitted with the proper power source in a convenient location. A licensed electrician can rewire your kitchen to accommodate a new electric range — it’s a job that should be left to professionals. What Future Costs Look Like Electric ranges are typically cheaper to purchase and install upfront. However, both types of ranges are comparable in price. You could save a few hundred dollars with a low-end electric range upfront, but you might spend more on your energy bills over time. Gas is typically less expensive than electricity, so gas ranges tend to be cost the homeowner less to operate. Hidden Costs and Concerns Gas ranges might be the clear winner when it comes to saving on your energy bill. As an added bonus, you can use gas ranges during power outages. However, gas ranges have a higher risk of house fires due to open flames and less stable cooking surfaces. Additionally, grease and debris from cooking can accumulate in hard-to-reach places in gas ranges. Greases and oils can ignite, which can potentially cost homeowners a lot more than energy savings. You can mitigate that by carefully reading the safety precautions. After all, kitchen fires and injuries are usually the result of mistakes and misuse. It is also important to mention that gas lines and gas ranges always have a chance of gas leaks. A gas leak can be a costly nightmare to fix. Not to mention, though rare, gas leaks can be deadly. It is important to think ahead during installation and hire someone who really knows what he or she is doing. When in doubt, call a master plumber to check out the situation and fix any issues as soon as possible. It is worth it to pay a little extra for emergency plumbing inspection and repair. Practical Cooking Information for Each Type of Range Electric ranges are known for providing a stable oven temperature which is needed to achieve the proper leavening with baking breads, cookies, and cakes. While electric cooktops, on the other hand, take more time to adjust temperature making it easy to overcook or even burn your food. Still, many cooks swear by gas ranges. Gas ranges change temperature quickly, and they offer more options for charring vegetables or roasting small pieces of meat. The open flame is easy to use on a high-quality gas range. Gas Ranges and Electric Ranges: The Pros & Cons The right choice depends on your individual needs. A straightforward checklist can help you sort out if gas or electric is the right choice for your household. Pros for Gas Ranges You can do your part to be more eco-friendly. You can save money on your electric bill over time. You can cook with an open flame and adjust temperature quickly. You can cook during power outages. Cons for Gas Ranges You might have to pay more for the range and higher installation costs. You might have a higher risk of house fires. You might have to address a gas leak. Pros for Electric Ranges You can easily install an electric range most of the time. You can clean a flat surface on an electric range easily after cooking. You can cook candy and sugary treats at a more even temperature on a flat surface. You can save money upfront. Cons for Electric Ranges You cannot use advanced cooking techniques that require an open flame. You will use more energy, and your bills might be higher. Electric ranges give off more heat, and your cooling bill can be higher in the summer. The Best Range for Your Household Depends on What You Want Think about what means the most to you and your family. You can go green with a gas range and put a little extra time into cleaning and maintenance, or you can make things a little easier on yourself with an electric range. Basically, a great home cook can make almost any spectacular meal on either range. What’s important is that you shop around, and not be afraid to ask a professional plumber or electrician to stop by and tell you how much installation for a new range would cost and how difficult it would be.