Switching your home’s appliances from gas to electric can save you money on your household bills – leaving you with more to spend on the things your family wants and needs. In fact, a recent study has found that fully electric Aussie homes can ave up to $1,899 each year! Even if your home is one of the three million with solar panels installed, switching from gas to electric could save you around $800 on bills each year.
Not to mention, an electric home is also kinder than gas when it comes to your family’s health and greenhouse gas emissions. The new Global Cooksafe Coalition, made up of doctors, chefs, and climate scientists, has cited the harmful health risks of gas – linking gas cooking to asthma in children, as well as problems with the brain and heart.
If you’re keen to compare gas and electric appliances, here are our top tips to help you make the best decision for your home.
Understanding the electricity grid
It’s no secret that our electric appliances can and do give off greenhouse gasses while they are in use. However, as our national electricity grid continues to be powered by more renewable energy sources, emissions from the electricity grid will decrease in the years to come. Emissions from gas power, however, will not reduce. It’s good to know then, that as part of the Australian Government’s transition plan to Net Zero, Australia’s electricity grid is being modernised to support 82% more renewable energy by 2030. This work will reduce emissions caused by our household electricity use too.
How smart is your appliance?
Understanding the energy efficiency of your appliances will go a long way towards choosing the right appliances for your home. Generally speaking, gas appliances are less efficient than modern electric appliances. Choosing smart home appliances will cost you less in energy bills over time, and can also emit fewer greenhouse gasses. You can compare the energy efficiency of gas and electric water heaters or air conditioners on the Australian government’s Energy rating website.
Mains gas or bottled gas?
Before you make any decisions about new appliances, it’s important to understand how your house receives its current gas supply. Around 38% of Aussie households rely on mains gas, and 3% on bottle gas. The cost savings you can realise from making the switch will depend on the type of gas you use – so consider the savings available by switching from your mains gas supply, or LPG gas, to inform your decision. If you’re on mains gas and switch your appliances to electric, you can look into closing your home’s gas account or disconnecting your home from the gas network. However, the costs vary from state to state and gas supplier.
Smart technologies for the win
As you compare gas and electrical appliances, here are some leading technologies to keep in mind.
It’s estimated that gas stoves can cause serious health risks, including up to 12% of childhood asthma in Australia. Induction cooktops are the safer choice for your family, as they don’t emit dangerous chemicals, nor do they rely on a naked flame to cook your food. Induction stove tops use electromagnetic energy to heat your cookware, rather than a gas flame that loses heat and energy to the air. For this reason, induction stove tops are twice as energy efficient as gas cooktops.
What’s more, because the heat comes directly from your cookware, induction cooks your food faster. In fact, even celebrity chefs like Neil Perry have switched their commercial kitchens from gas to induction, as they’re faster to cook with and more energy efficient. This clever stove top is also easier to clean as its surface is smooth, and knob and ridge free – another bonus!
Heat pumps are an extremely energy efficient way to heat water or air in your home. Although they can be costly to purchase, heats pumps are cost effective to run. For example, heat pump water heaters use 30% of the energy of a traditional electric hot water system. Likewise, reverse cycle air conditioners, which use heat pump technology, have 300 to 600% efficiency – with some products achieving efficiencies of over 1000%.
Heat pump technology does vary, so think about what’s right for your home. For instance, if you’re replacing your gas ducted heating system, you might like to consider split-system heat pumps instead of ducted heat pumps. A split-system heat pump has an indoor and outdoor unit that transfers air from outside your home, releasing the warm air into your home. Split systems cost less to install and run than ducted heatingUltimately, it is best for you to talk to an expert about quoting the new appliances for your home, so you can compare installation and estimated running costs.