Is Propane More Efficient Than Electricity As a Heating Source?


Quick Answer

Propane is more efficient than electricity as a heating source because it is cheaper, warmer, cleaner and more reliable. The U.S. Department of Energy reports that propane heating systems cost one-third less to operate than electric heating systems and recover water two times as fast as electric water heaters.

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Full Answer

While electric heat pumps generate heat cooler than a person's body temperature, or below 98.6 degrees Fahrenheit, propane gas furnaces heat the air to between 130 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit and operate in brief intervals to keep energy costs low. Propane heaters and heating systems allow a person to control the temperature in individual rooms, keeping some rooms cooler than others if desired. On average, propane-fueled furnaces last between five and 10 years longer than electric heat pumps.

Unlike electricity, which is subject to power outages, propane is dependable in that it is possible to store it in a tank at the property where it is to be used, making it constantly available. It is also much cleaner than electricity, with far fewer emissions. Propane energy is directly consumed within the building in which it is used for heating. Electrical heat, however, is a secondary energy source, requiring generation from another energy source, such as petroleum or natural gas.

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