You may have noticed a price difference if you are in the market for a new dryer and have been eyeing out the electricity-saving gas options. Dryers are an investment to begin with, so it’s reasonable to understand why you might want to why you’re investing more money.
While less prevalent than their electric counterparts, there are several benefits to a gas dryer. They help reduce your electricity usage, pollution from electricity production, and they are often said to be more effective at drying. However, the internal nature of a gas dryer means paying more for it.
Gas dryers require an entirely separate gas assembly for heat that electric dryers don’t. The components that go into this, as well as parts for the gas connection and extra materials for bigger casings, mean that these appliances are more expensive to make. Thus, they are more expensive to buy.
Gas vs Electric Dryer: Average Price Difference
|Dryer Drum Capacity||Average Cost ($) of Electric Dryer||Average Cost ($) of Gas Dryer|
|Compact (2.0-4.2 ft3)||$800-$1,000||N/A|
|Standard (4.2-7.0 ft3)||$900-$1,100||$950-$1,200|
|Large (7.2-8.0 ft3)||$1,050-$1,500||$1,150-$1,600|
|Extra-large (8.0+ ft3)||$1,600-$2,000||$1,700-$2,100|
As you can see, I presented an estimated range of average prices for the various dryer sizes. This is because the drum capacity within the range of a category can mean a higher or lower price. So, it depends on what you buy.
However, we can also see that gas dryers usually cost an extra $50-$100.
Burner Assembly More Expensive
While gas and electric dryers tend to look much the same from the outside—unless you check the connections at the back—they have several internal differences.
Electric dryers are run on a system of wires that supply electricity to all the different components, including the heating element, using a specialized 240V outlet.
On the other hand, gas dryers provide heat by burning natural gas or propane. This requires a gas assembly within the machine.
There is a blower and the temperature sensors, the drum, pulleys, rollers, and motor, as these are standard to both types of dryers.
However, the gas assembly is a significant extra. I’m not sure how much you know about gas assemblies, but there are a lot of components (many delicate) that go into a functioning gas dryer.
I’m talking about the ignitor and filament, extra fuses and thermostats, the burner bar, the gas assembly housing, the flame sensor, and the valve assembly. All these work together to produce and regulate heat, ensuring the gas is safe to use.
When we are addressing worn or broken parts in the dryer, the individual part that you replace doesn’t cost a fortune. However, the cost builds when you consider that you are paying for everything simultaneously.
Gas Connections Are Also Extra Parts
So, we have the gas assembly within the machine. There is also the matter of the parts for the gas connection.
You need to be able to supply gas from the gas line to the machine through the internal gas pipes, valve assembly, and burner bar. Otherwise, you have no heat to dry your clothing.
As stated above, electric dryers get power from a single cord to make the entire appliance function.
While our gas dryers have a plug too, this isn’t designed to power a heating element. We need a gas connection for the heating function, which is something we need to pay for.
However, the savings you make on your electrical bills might be worth the higher initial investment. That is, unless you have to install the gas lines as well.
Sometimes Gas Dryers Are Bigger
In the first section, we covered that there are different size dryers and that the bigger the appliance, the more it tends to cost.
If you think about how the blower and the gas assembly with all the pipes need to fit inside the dryer case, it makes sense that gas dryers are sometimes bigger than electric versions (even if the capacities aren’t much different).
You might have noticed the lack of compact gas dryers. These dryers are space-saving options and have the smallest dimensions in the dryer market. The gas assembly likely can’t fit into the smaller units.
If gas dryers are larger to accommodate all the space-hungry components, it also makes sense that more materials are needed to craft them, which you have to pay for along with the expensive gas assembly.
Ventless Electric Dryers
Another reason you might be able to find a smaller electric dryer is that you can choose a ventless version. These lack the ducting that vented dryers have.
Gas dryers must be vented for safe operation and exhaustion of combustion gases, so there is no ventless option.