Stove Shopping: Gas vs. Electric

A kitchen with a new stove next to blue cabinets.

As any homeowner will tell you, there’s more to a home than meets the eye. One decision on the horizon is choosing between gas and electric. If appliance choices have got you feeling the heat, know that it’s easier than you think. Here are a few pointers on choosing the right stove for your needs.

Your Unique Setup

One of the first questions to get out of the way is whether your home is setup for gas or electric. However, having one usually doesn’t negate the other! Many homes can have both gas and electric hookups albeit at an added cost (hiring a qualified electrician is your best bet for installation of either type). You should also know that gas lines needed for gas stoves aren’t a given in rural areas.

If you already have a stove, using what you have may dictate the best plan of action. Homeowners starting fresh should consider everything from the home setup to model preferences before deciding. Don’t forget about dimensions or style since a good stove is meant to last!

Cleanliness

Metal grates on a gas stove are easy to clean.

Another consideration in the gas vs. electric debate is how to clean your machine. Gas stoves are often fitted with detachable cast-iron grates and ceramic plates cover the burner for an added layer of protection. While these extra parts and pieces may seem tedious, they’re generally easier to clean. Others prefer the smooth look of electric stoves which are prone to scratching and harder to maintain.

It goes without saying that major appliances are investment pieces worthy of extra care. All stoves requires regular cleaning though electric stovetops are especially delicate. Be sure to use specially-formulated stovetop cleaner and nonabrasive sponges for a lasting finish.

Pricing

As with every major decision, price comes into play. It’s thought that electric stoves are usually the cheaper option though not by a lot. Don’t forget to think of price from an operational standpoint, too. After all, you may save $100 or more on an electric stove only to pay slightly more in electricity to use it.

It’s hard to talk about price without mentioning the wide range of models available. Both gas and electric are popular in North American households, so you’ll have no difficulty finding one to fit your price range. Check out retailers like Amana or GE for more information. 

The Foodie in You

Gas stoves are sometimes preferred by foodies.

When was the last time you roasted a pepper on an open flame? Is it important that your stove reacts quickly? Many foodies tend to favor gas stoves simply because they provide more control. You can quickly and easily adjust the heat and reign supreme over your kitchen. If your cooking needs are more standard than sophisticated, electric may be perfectly fine.

Another thing to consider is whether you’d like to spend more time in the kitchen now that you can make it your own. Maybe your previous life didn’t revolve around home and entertaining, but it could in the future. If kids are in the cards, your cooking needs could change dramatically-so keep the big picture in mind.

Personal Preference

Part of your stove decision comes down to personal preference. Did you grow up with gas or electric? Do you have fond memories of cooking on one type or the other? If not, it’s possible your spouse does. Not all decisions come down to logic so it’s perfectly okay to choose what you love first and foremost.

One thing you might also ask is how your food tastes on gas vs. electric. Do you notice a difference in texture or consistency? It’s possible you like or dislike the smell of gas or electric. At the end of the day, stoves are meant for cooking so let food preferences lead the way!

Safety Concerns

Electric stoves have fewer safety concerns.

Let’s face it: safety matters. Electric stoves are thought to win this category for a couple of reasons. For one thing, incorrectly installed gas stoves may lead to gas leaks. A subsequent fire or explosion is unlikely, though still possible. Carbon monoxide poisoning is another real danger associated with gas stoves even when they’re professionally installed.

Yet another consideration with gas stoves is the use of fire. It doesn’t take long for a curious child to experiment with an open flame or for a more dangerous situation to unfold. Burns can happen with either type though electric ranges tend to be safer for families with children.

Final Thoughts

Choosing a stove involves everything from electricians to your inner chef. What matters most depends on your specific situation. Whether you’re a stickler for cleaning, safety, or convenience, you’re bound to find the right match. Best of luck and happy cooking!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *