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Natural Gas vs Electricity: Differences, Benefits, and Costs 

By Tiffany Reynolds

People today may feel overwhelmed by all the energy choices on the market. Which is better – solar power or wind? Coal or hydroelectric? Natural gas or electricity?  

There’s no one right answer, because every household has slightly different needs. That’s why Power Wizard works with each customer to help pick the best energy plan for you. 

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Natural gas and electricity both have advantages and disadvantages. The more you know about them, the easier it is to see which option is right for you. That puts you in a great position when it’s time to  shop for energy.  

When you do, be sure to consider natural gas vs electricity costs, market prices, carbon footprint, and energy savings. Here, you’ll learn about the advantage of natural gas and electricity, and you’ll get a look at how fuel costs and electricity costs impact the industry.  

Natural Gas vs Electricity: How They Match Up 

Natural gas and electricity can both power your home. Many Texans already use natural gas to heat their homes in the winter. Natural gas can also power air conditioners, water heaters, pool heaters, and a number of common electric appliances.  

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Most Texans run their homes on electricity, so you probably already know that electric power can do just about any job in your home, from lighting to cooling. Electric heating can even keep your home comfortable in the winter. 

Natural gas is often more affordable than electricity, once you’ve paid for installation. It’s also a “clean” gas which is less damaging to the environment than some choices. Here’s a closer look at the advantages and disadvantages of each option. 

The Advantages of Natural Gas as Your Energy Source 

Natural gas is a low-cost, dependable source of energy to power your home. There are a lot of myths and misunderstandings about natural gas, unfortunately. Let’s set the record straight. Here are some of the biggest upsides to using natural gas. 

Higher Cost Savings 

Natural gas is almost always cheaper than electricity. It’s hard to pinpoint just how much cheaper, since both electric and gas prices can be volatile. But in general, the average cost of natural gas can be as much as two or three times less expensive than electricity. 

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If your home is already equipped to run on gas, you could see significant savings by switching to natural gas instead of electricity. The switch could put extra money in your pocket every month – especially during the hot summer months, when you’re running the air conditioning on high. 

Reliability 

If you experienced the ice storm of 2021, you know that Texas’s electric grid isn’t always reliable for powering and heating your home. 

In contrast, natural gas is one of the most reliable energy sources.  

Natural gas runs through pipelines, instead of on power lines. That means that the supply won’t be disrupted the next time there’s a tropical storm or an unexpected blizzard.  

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The United States has an excellent supply of natural gas, and that supply is expected to last far into the future. In fact, natural gas is so plentiful that it’s already used to generate most of the electricity in Texas. 

The Downsides of Natural Gas Appliances 

There are plenty of disadvantages to using natural gas appliances. Here are a few of the biggest cons to using natural gas. 

Emissions 

Is natural gas a “clean” source of energy, or is it a huge source of greenhouse gasses? It’s a complex question, actually. 

When you burn natural gas — to heat your home, or to power your stove, for example — the gas burns “clean.” Burning natural gas creates  up to 60% less carbon dioxide than burning coal. That’s good news for the environment. 

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But the process of extracting natural gas from the earth generates harmful greenhouse gasses. Drilling and extraction often cause methane gas leaks. These emissions can be damaging to the environment. 

Processing Process 

Natural gas doesn’t come out of the earth ready to use. It has to be processed. Processing natural gas so that it can power your home takes a lot of effort, and also a lot of energy.  

Processing plants can sometimes be knocked offline, especially by coastal storms. Many processing plants are situated in the Gulf Coast, making them vulnerable to hurricanes and extreme weather events. 

The Advantages of Electricity 

Electricity is one of the most common ways to power a home. Chances are, you already use electricity to light your home and to keep cool in the summer. You may also use electricity to run your kitchen appliances and your washer or dryer. 

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Electricity is cheap to maintain and has the potential to be clean and green. Here are some of the major upsides of using electricity. 

Availability of Renewable Energy Sources 

Natural gas can create electricity. But so can wind turbines and solar panels. In some cases, even the force of our footsteps can generate enough electricity to power electric lights.  

Scientists are working on methods to make renewable energy sources more efficient and affordable. As renewable energy becomes a reality, electricity will turn into a green source of power. 

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What does that mean? It means that you’ll be able to heat and cool your home, or stream movies, without worrying about dangerous greenhouse gas emissions.  

Energy Storage Options 

Electricity production can fluctuate. Power plants produce more electricity during some periods than others. But that doesn’t have to impact the general electricity supply. 

Suppliers can store electricity in a few different ways. Batteries, hydroelectric pumps, and flywheels are just a few of the more convenient options. Because electricity is so easy to store, there’s sure to be a plentiful supply when customers need it to power their homes. 

Lower Maintenance Costs 

Running your home on natural gas can save you money on your monthly energy bill. But you’ll also have to pay to maintain your natural gas lines and generator. 

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If you decide to use electricity instead, your maintenance costs will probably be much lower. Electrical systems don’t need to be inspected on a regular basis the way gas lines do. Fixing a wiring issue is also often simpler than dealing with a gas leak.  

By reducing your maintenance costs, electricity can save you money in the long run. 

Disadvantages of Electricity 

Electricity has its own set of downsides. Depending on your situation, it can be costly. It’s also not emission-free. Here are some of the cons of using electricity. 

Price of Electricity 

On average, electricity can cost you two or three times more than gas. You’ll notice the price difference in your monthly electricity bill. Although, if you work with Power Wizard, you’ll also find ways to get the cheapest possible electricity. 

Still, the higher cost of electricity will be reflected in your bill. 

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How Do You Decide What is Right for Your Home? 

Power Wizard can help you make smart energy choices for your home. Knowledge is power, and the more information you have, the easier it is to make good decisions. 

Ready to get started finding the best energy plan for your home? 

 

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