If a home has a gas line hookup in the laundry area, it is equipped for a gas dryer. If the laundry area has a 240-volt outlet, it is equipped for an electric dryer. A 240-volt outlet is larger than normal and is twice the strength of a normal household outlet. If neither is present, either a gas line or a 240-volt outlet can be professionally installed.
Gas dryers utilize a gas burner to produce heat to dry clothing. Gas dryers are generally more expensive to purchase, but they are less expensive to operate. The operating cost is approximately 15 to 33 cents per load of laundry. Gas dryers operate at hotter temperatures than electric dryers, so clothes do not take as long to dry. Gas dryers use a minimal amount of electricity to turn the dryer's drum. Gas dryers should be professionally installed.
Electric dryers use heating coils to produce heat. The average cost to operate an electric dryer is 32 to 41 cents per load of laundry. An electric dryer requires no professional installation, as it can simply be plugged in. Regardless of the type of dryer, it is critical that its lint trap is cleaned regularly and that it is properly vented. A properly vented dryer dries clothes effectively and efficiently. It also reduces the risk of fire.