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Thread: Gas or Electric Dryer?

  1. #1
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    Gas or Electric Dryer?

    We're building a house and I can choose a gas or electic dryer. We have an electric dryer now. What are the benefits of each? I told DH the CL people would steer me right!

  2. #2
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    I have gas. If I remember correctly, the machine may cost a tiny bit more up front, but it's way cheaper to run.
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  3. #3
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    I've had both, and to tell you the truth I don't notice a difference in quality of how the dryers run, how the clothes dry, how they last, etc. I am a little more afraid of the gas dryer as far as lint and leaving the house with the dryer running... (I NEVER do that, but it has come to my attention than my sweet husband that does laundry has...)

    I do know that our gas bill is high because of the cold winter and the size of our house...I kinda wish I had more electric items instead of gas because our electric bill is so small in comparison.
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  4. #4
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    When we built this house, we opted for gas after owning nothing but electric dryers for the past 15 years. Now granted, the dryer is brand new (but our previous electric dryers always were too), but I can definitely tell a tremendous difference in drying time. DH sleeps with these heavy mink blankets my parents have brought us from China, and I sleep with these nice, thick flannel blankets that DH has made me (some are very large - like 1 1/2 times the size of a king-size bed), and we wash them at least once a week because they get furry from the pet hair. They've always taken 2-4 cycles through our electric dryers to get completely dry, but not a single one of them takes more than one cycle in our new gas dryer to get dry. I love it, because we do at least a half dozen loads of laundry every week, and there's no back up now waiting for things to get done in the dryer.

    That's really the only thing I've noticed. I don't pay attention to what our electric/gas bills are a month (I just pay them), so I don't know if they're any more expensive or cheaper to run. I believe the dryer cost a bit more than I probably would have spent had I bought a comparable electric dryer, but it wasn't a lot, and it's been well worth it for us.

  5. #5
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    I think I don't notice drying time because I studied textiles in college. High heat is what most people use for cotton and what is said is good. It actually breaks down the fibers faster and contributes to faster fading. I don't use the hottest cycle that often, mostly for towels and blankets. I use the medium heat cycle for our clothes, which doesn't have a time setting. I just set it and check to see if the clothes are dry when the cycle shuts off.

    If I had humongous blankets, I'd want a really hot cycle or it would take forever to dry.
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  6. #6
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    I have always had a gas dryer but since I've moved into this house I have electric. I can't comment on the dryer time or cost since I wasn't living here with the gas dryer (and it was 20 years old, but still worked great). I will say that I HATE the lint catcher in this dryer. It is located inside the dryer (while the gas was on top) and I seem to have much more lint than I did before to the point that I'm worried about lint build up (something I never worried about with my gas dryer).

    I have also heard that gas is cheaper to operate and I know that is why I originally bought a gas dryer
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  7. #7
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    I don't know if it's still the case with newer dryers but we had to have a plumber (I think) come in and hook up our dryer. This was 11 years ago so maybe that's not necessary anymore? If that's still the case then it's one more expense to consider when deciding to go gas vs. electric. I've been very happy with my gas dryer. I've only had a repairman out once in 11 years of use and it was an inexpensive fix.
    Linda

    When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and I could say “I used everything you gave me.”

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  8. #8
    I don't think gas or electricity would make that much of a difference. I'm sure choosing out a good dryer would matter more. I would check out Consumer Reports (you can get an online 1 month subscription for about $5).

    I would also suggest talking to some of your local retailers. They can tell you which is more popular in your area. I've heard your geographic location can make a big difference in whether electricity or gas is more cost efficient for appliances.

    You might want to call your local gas and electricity company. I know we're always getting flyers in the mail to switch our water heater and they'll give us a new one free!

  9. #9
    Here is a blurb from the intro to Consumer Reports' most recent article on dryers (2/05):

    "Consider gas. Most homes have either the 240-volt outlet that an electric dryer requires or a gas hookup. If you have both, don't rule out a gas dryer because it costs $50 or so more than its electric counterpart. The likely savings in fuel costs should make the gas model cheaper in the long run. Both types perform comparably, our years of testing show. Consumer Reports tests only electric dryers, which account for about 80 percent of the models sold, but equivalent gas models are listed in the Ratings."

    We have a gas dryer now and even though it is many years old (inherited from previous owners) it dries faster than any of the electric dryers I've used.

    The other main thing that Consumer Reports says is to choose a model with a moisture sensor rather than a thermostat to determine when drying is done, because the former is more accurate than the latter in their experience.

  10. #10
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    I have a gas dryer. I love it. It's propane, not natural gas. Our stove is propane, too. We use only about 30 gallons of gas per quarter (we get delivery each quarter) We do tons of laundry and I cook and bake all the time. I have nothing to compare it to, since I previously had a gas dryer, but I really like it. It has a dry sensor as well so it stops when the clothes are dry.

    We did have to have the propane guys come out to install it properly when we got a new one a few years back. It was no big deal. I don't know what it cost.

    I never considered not leaving the house with the dryer running. Is that a huge concern? I'm just curious since no one ever mentioned that to me before.
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  11. #11
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    Originally posted by MrsReber


    I never considered not leaving the house with the dryer running. Is that a huge concern? I'm just curious since no one ever mentioned that to me before.
    Many people aren't comfortable running appliances (washer, dryer, dishwasher, etc) when they aren't home in case of fire or flood. I figure I'm not going to be able to do anything about it while its happening other than shut the power off if I even realized it was leaking or burning (my washer/dryer are in my garage) so I always run things whether I'm home or not (I also run them while I'm sleeping) So far, so good
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  12. #12
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    Originally posted by HejazSunKat
    I don't know if it's still the case with newer dryers but we had to have a plumber (I think) come in and hook up our dryer. This was 11 years ago so maybe that's not necessary anymore?
    Yes, plumbers must hook up the dryer since it means connecting to a gas line and, in fact, you must also get a permit for it as well. But more than worth the up front cost. I've been in my house for 40 years and am only on my 2nd dryer and it's still going strong. I figure, if I break the cost down into a yearly cost, it's cheaper than cheap. I've certainly gotten my money's worth and then some.
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  13. #13
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    If you have an existing gas line, you don't need a plumber to connect the dryer. If you need to add a gas line, a plumber does that for you. I didn't need any permits in CA to hook up my dryer when I had the plumber hook up the dryer to an already existing (but not in the right place) gas line. (The house had gas for heat so there was a gas line, just not in the laundry room).
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  14. #14
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    Well, things might have changed, since it's been such a long time since I replaced my dryer, but the line was already there both times and the dryer just had to be connected, but the plumber had to do it (if we wanted to keep things legal ). At least that's how it is here in my little corner of MA. And I still have the building permit next to the dryer.
    I would guess that it covers for insurance purposes if something were to happen.
    Galinda didn't often stop to consider whether she believed in what she said or not; the whole point of conversation was flow. -- Gregory Maguire: Wicked
    The only time a cold, blank stare is a correct response is when a stranger invites you to get better acquainted with his deity or the contents of his trousers.
    ----Miss Conduct, Boston Globe Magazine etiquette columnist

  15. #15
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    I'd hook it up for both, if possible, and then you can decide what you want later on. This house was hooked up for only gas and I have an electric dryer, so we had an electrician install a plug and circuit breaker for us. When I bought the dryer, the new house we were moving into had only had the electric option.

  16. #16
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    Originally posted by funnybone
    I'd hook it up for both, if possible, and then you can decide what you want later on. This house was hooked up for only gas and I have an electric dryer, so we had an electrician install a plug and circuit breaker for us. When I bought the dryer, the new house we were moving into had only had the electric option.
    I think that is a great idea. Its a minimal cost to you since you are building and it gives you flexibility as well
    Democrats are Sexy. Who has ever heard of a good piece of elephant?

  17. #17
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    I've always had gas dryers, so I can't comment on electric. I've always heard/read that gas dryers are more gentle on the clothes than electric.

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