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Electric Boilers vs. Gas Boilers: Which is Best for Your Project?

The hydronic industry is experiencing a wider range of boiler options as technology advances. Gas and electric boilers are among the top choices in the industry today. The benefits of each type differ, but which one is right for your project?

First, let's break down where these boilers work best:

  • It is best to use a traditional gas boiler for projects in places such as hospitals, universities, and offices. These units can handle large-capacity jobs often found in buildings like those above.

  • Electric boilers are perfect for smaller projects and facilities. Electric boilers can be more compact, so when you need to save space, it makes sense to use them. Electric boilers can be as large, and in some cases, larger than gas-fired boilers, but if you have space restrictions, these can be the perfect fit.

Let's compare the benefits of gas and electric boilers:

  • Currently, gas boilers are the most cost-effective option on the market. Even with other types of combustible fuel, gas tends to be the least expensive option. Gas boilers are also able to heat a higher volume of water more frequently than electric boilers.

  • Easy installation and low startup costs make electric boilers attractive. Unlike traditional gas boilers, they do not require exhaust output because combustion is not involved. If your project is in an area with strict emission guidelines, an electric boiler will ease the worry of those regulations. Electric boilers are also incredibly efficient because there is no loss of heat from the heat source to the water: the amount of electricity you put in = the amount of heat you get out. If your project is in an area where the cost of electricity is low, an electric boiler might be the most cost-effective option.

We also need to consider possible drawbacks between gas vs electric boilers:

  • Gas boilers tend to be larger than electric boilers and have more moving parts. This can lead to more problems if something breaks or malfunctions. Because these boilers are larger, they are more difficult to fit in tight spaces. If your mechanical room is small, this could be an issue.

  • However, electric boilers may have lower installation costs but higher operating costs. Electric boilers are 3-4 times more expensive than traditional gas boilers, and if you lose power, you have to rely on a backup generator, or you're out of luck.

It's ultimately up to you to decide what kind of boiler will optimize output for your project, but the information above can help you make an informed decision. Learn more about Hoffman Hydronics' boiler options by clicking here and contacting your nearest Hoffman Hydronics office.

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