The Difference Between Gas and Electric Dryers

The Difference Between Gas and Electric Dryers

By Alex Mikayelyan December 13, 2021

Laundry is a big part of our day-to-day responsibilities. Clean clothing is always important as without it, well, you probably can imagine a few inconveniences. So having a properly functioning laundry routine is key to your comfort. Washing machines do most of the heavy lifting in your laundry-related chores, but let’s not forget about the dryer. While air drying is still a common way of getting your clothes ready for the drawers, machine dryers are also widely available and far more efficient.

And yes, much like with just about any piece of modern technology, you have several types of clothes dryers to pick from. They function differently and provide a varied set of advantages so it’s good to know these nuances the next time you’re planning on freshening up your washer and dryer set. Two of the most common types of dryers you will find on the market are gas and electric-powered ones. While they do perform the same task, that being drying your clothes, they are fundamentally different in several ways.

Gas Dryer

The Advantages and Downsides of Owning a Gas-Powered Dryer

The Advantages and Downsides of Owning a Gas-Powered Dryer

First released into the market in the 1970s, the natural gas dryer has made its way into many homes and has been efficiently drying clothes for decades. Contrary to its name, a gas dryer does not solely rely on gas for power. Modern dryers are a lot more complex than a metallic cylinder that heats up and dries clothing. There are a ton of little buttons, notches, and screens that also rely on an electrical outlet to work. So while the heating of the dryer relies on gas, the electronics inside make use of your standard electric plug to function properly.

Advantages of Gas Dryers

First and foremost, gas dryers are very energy efficient compared to electric ones. It is no secret that gas power in many cases is much more energy-efficient than electricity and considering how often you’ll be using your dryer, this makes it much more sustainable. While it is no secret that gas dryers do cost more than their electric counterparts, this price tag is justified in the long run as you’ll be saving money on utilities.

Aside from being energy-efficient, gas dryers are also efficient at drying clothes. This is because gas dryers can heat up faster than electric ones and also generate more heat altogether. As a result, they are much better at drying clothes, even in large batches. So, if you have efficiency in mind, even a compact gas dryer will get the job done faster than an electric one. 

Disadvantages of Gas Dryers

One of the biggest disadvantages of gas washer dryers is that they do require being hooked up to the gas line. This isn’t necessarily a problem if your gas lines cover a large area of your home, be it in the kitchen, laundry room, or basement. But if your gas lines were not designed with dryers in mind, you’d need a plumber to install a separate gas line that goes to where your dryer is located. This can go both ways: it can either be a fairly simple process requiring barely any renovations. But in cases where the designated location of your gas dryer is far away from the nearest gas line, it could be more difficult to install an opening for your dryer.

A gas dryer leaking gas is not a common occurrence and only happens because of shoddy work on the part of your plumber. However, gas dryers need to be placed near a vent that goes directly outside. This is done to ensure that in the off chance that there is a leak, it can safely flow out of your home without causing any harm. Gas dryer costs can also be seen as a disadvantage as they tend to be somewhat pricey. Even if you’re looking for the best gas dryer for the money, trying to get the most bang for your buck, expect to pay around $1,000. Consider these steeper costs before investing in a gas dryer as this may be something that is out of your price range. 

Electric Dryer

The Benefits of Owning an Electric Dryer

The Benefits of Owning an Electric Dryer

The first electric clothes dryer was invented in the 1930s, decades before gas-powered ones rolled into the market. They are widely available in all kinds of designs and models to fit the diverse practical and stylistic needs of homeowners all across the country. They require a 240-volt outlet to function, so it is important to make sure that your electrical system can accommodate them. It’s a good idea to have an electrician come in and make all the necessary adjustments to your electrical system to ensure the dryer machine has easy access to a 240-volt outlet. 

Advantages of Electric Dryers

The key to the best electric dryer is its simplicity, be it the installation, maintenance, or usability. This isn’t to say that gas dryers are not user-friendly, but they are slightly more complicated to install considering that you’ll be attaching them to two separate power sources. With electric dryers, you simply need a 240-volt outlet. Another advantage of electric dryers is that they do not risk any gas leaks. While gas dryer leaks are not common, there is a slim chance that they can happen. Not the case with electrical dryers, as they are connected exclusively to electricity.

Another important advantage of the electric laundry dryer is that it costs less in terms of maintenance. Not only are gas dryers more expensive than electric ones, but they also require more maintenance and repairs. In general, you should be always be cleaning the residual lint out of your dryer’s filter which is a fundamental step in maintenance to help you avoid malfunctions and water leaks. However, in the case of gas dryers, since they use both gas and electricity, there are more parts to take care of in case they start malfunctioning. In fact, the electric washer and dryer are so much more straightforward than gas-powered ones that you can actually fix some of the more basic malfunctions yourself.

Disadvantages of Electric Dryers

The main disadvantage with electric dryers is that they take much longer to dry the same amount of clothes as gas dryers. This is because they do not heat up as much or as quickly as their gas counterparts, making them less efficient. Additionally, while electric dryers are typically cheaper than gas-powered ones, after a few years the utility prices will add up. Electric dryers also require a lot more energy than gas ones, making them less energy-efficient.


Written by
Alex Mikayelyan

Written by Alex Mikayelyan