The Cost Differences Between Natural Gas, Propane, And Electric Heating Systems

28 July 2015
 Categories: Construction & Contractors, Articles


If you are building a home in an area where natural gas is not available, you will need to decide how you will heat your home. The two most common alternatives to natural gas are propane gas and electric heat. There is also a chance you could pay to have natural gas run to your house. As you think about which option to choose, it's important to understand the cost differences in these three types of heating systems.

Costs For Installation Of Energy

The first thing you may want to consider is the costs for each type of system. If you decide that you really want natural gas, you could talk to the local gas company to find out if it is even an option. If natural gas is located within a relatively short distance from your home (like one mile away), the natural gas company may agree to run a pipe to your house so that you can have natural gas.

The downside to this is that the gas company will charge you a fee for running this pipe, and this fee will be calculated based on the distance the company must run the gas line. At the minimum, a natural gas company will charge at least $15 to $25 per linear foot. If you have to run the line one mile, this could cost over $80,000. There is a lot of work involved with getting natural gas from one place to another, which is why choosing natural gas in a rural area is not usually the best option.

On the other hand, if you choose propane heating or electric heating, you will not have to pay this absorbent fee. If you choose electric heating, you will not incur any additional costs for running the electric to your home, because this is something you would have to do no matter what type of heating system you chose.

For propane, you may have to pay a company to install a gas line from the propane tank to your house, but this would not cost a lot, because the tank could be placed right next to your home.

Upfront Costs For Each System

The second thing to consider is the amount of money you must pay upfront for your furnace system. If you choose electric heating, you will need to get a geothermal heat pump system installed. Geothermal systems typically cost around twice as much as other types of heating systems, and you can expect to pay $20,000 to $25,000 for this system.

If you get a system that operates on natural gas or propane, it should cost much less than this. As you think about this decision, you should decide how much you want to pay upfront. If you want the most affordable option upfront, choosing a standard furnace that runs on propane would probably make the most sense at this point.

Operating Costs For Each System

By now, you have probably ruled out using natural gas to heat your home, but you may still be trying to decide between propane and electric heat. It can be hard to determine which option will result in the lowest heating bills, and this is primarily because it depends on the price of propane and on the price of electricity. Both of these prices can change, which will affect the amount you pay.

Based on most comparisons that have been completed, it appears that propane is usually cheaper or equal to the price of electric heating systems, but it always depends on the current rates.

Choosing a furnace that operates on propane may be the most cost-effective option for your new home. To learn more about propane heating, contact a contractor in your area today. Look at this for more information. 


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