Should I Buy a Gas or Electric Washer and Dryer?

If you’re looking for a new washer or dryer, one thing you’re going to need to think about is whether to go with an electric or gas option.

Though it may seem obvious, let’s start out by discussing how both types of dryers work. All washers run on electricity, so the debate really comes down to the two different types of dryers.

An electric washer and dryer are going to use a 240V current and a heating coil. If you’re not sure whether or not you can support that much current in your home, look at the plug head. It should be large with three prongs. Some may have four, but then you need an outlet that can match it. This is generally the case with newer construction.

With gas dryers, you need a gas burner to create the heat needed to dry the clothes. When the dryer begins, a sensor on its motor triggers the igniter to light as soon as the machine hits full speed.

As soon as the pilot light is lit, another sensor is responsible for opening the gas valve. An electric fan then moves the heated air around. When it gets to the desired temperature, that valve then shuts. The dryer has a thermostat that measures the air temperature in the machine so if it drops to 30 degrees, the entire process can start all over again. This one will also require an 110V outlet.

One of the reasons we covered the way they operate first is because this is largely what the decision comes down to for most people. That’s because, when it comes to cost, the two cancel each other out.

Electric washers are cheaper to purchase, but gas washers cost less to operate. Given these two choices, a lot of people opt for the latter. After all, you’ll be using these machines for a decade or longer.

However, people without gas lines readily available generally don’t want to go to the trouble of outfitting their homes. They find the overall difference negligible.

For whatever it’s worth, though, the gas washers are better for those who wash at least one load a day and plan on living in their home for 2.5 years or more. For anything less than that, an electric washer is going to be your best bet.

The good news is that, whichever one you go with, your clothes are going to get clean. Neither gas nor electric power has an advantage over the other. However, you should now have the information you need to make a buying decision based on your budget.


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