Information on the energy consumption and running costs of cooking appliances is not readily available. Energy efficiency labelling is in place for electric ovens but not for gas ovens. Also there are no energy labels for hobs, either electric or gas. So if you are choosing a new cooker, how can you assess likely running costs and are differences in running costs sufficient to influence your purchasing decision? Below are some tips to help you.
Ovens: Small Vs Large
The EU energy label for electric ovens gives an indication of energy efficiency in relation to the size of the oven. Ovens are classified as small, medium and large. The table below shows the approximate annual running costs of ‘A’ rated small, medium and large electric ovens based on the average number of times a cooker is used each year*.
||Energy Rating||Energy Consumption per use||Cost per use @ current prices||Estimated annual running cost (223 uses per year)
|Small 12 - 35 litres||A||0.60 kWh||9 pence||£ 19.4|
|Medium 35 - 65 litres||A||0.80 kWh||12 pence||£ 25.87|
|Large >65 litres||A||1.00 kWh||15 pence||£ 32.34|
As would be expected small ovens cost less to run than large ovens, even though they are all ‘A’ rated. The differences are not large, but you will save money on both the purchase cost and running cost if you buy the smallest oven to suit your needs.
Ovens: Gas Vs Electric
In recent years there has been a trend towards electric ovens, partly because of an increase in the number of built-in appliances where installation of electric ovens can be more convenient. Also electric ovens are perceived to give a more even heating; although heating performance is as much down to oven design as fuel type. But what are the differences in running costs? The table below compares the annual running costs of gas and electric ovens.
|Oven type||Average Energy Consumption per use*||Cost per use at current prices||Estimated annual running cost (223 uses per year)|
|Gas||1.52 kWh||7 pence||£ 15.25|
|Electric||1.09 kWh||16 pence||£ 35.25|
|*Defra Policy Brief: Improving the energy performance of domestic cooking products July 2008
*MTP Programme BNCK01: Assumptions underlying the energy projections of cooking appliances
As can be seen, gas ovens are much cheaper to run than electric ovens, gas is also a much more efficient energy source so it will have lower CO2 emissions. However for fan assisted electric ovens use around 20% less energy than conventional electric ovens as they heat up and cool down quicker.
Hobs: Gas Vs Electric
The table below shows that gas hobs are much cheaper to run than electric hobs. In recent years electric induction hobs have been introduced which offer much more heating control and are also more energy efficient than standard electric hobs. However induction hobs can cost up to £ 200 or more to purchase than a standard electric hob although savings on your electric bill will only be in the region of £ 10 per year.
|| Average energy consumption per use*
||Cost per use at current prices||Estimated annual running cost (424 uses per year)|
|Gas||0.90 kWh||4 pence||£ 17.17|
|Electric||0.72 kWh||10 pence||£ 44.27|
|Electric Induction||0.504 kWh||7 pence||£ 30.99|
|*Defra Policy Brief: Improving the energy performance of domestic cooking products July 2008|
Conclusions: gas vs electric cooking
Based on the average energy consumption of gas and electric appliances, cooking with gas is much cheaper, summary costs are shown below.
|Fuel type||Estimated annual running cost|
|Gas hob and oven||£ 32|
|Electric hob and oven||£ 80|
|Gas hob and electric oven||£ 52|
Gas is a significantly cheaper fuel and you could save up to £ 40 on your energy bills by using gas appliances as opposed to electric. Many people have electric ovens and gas hobs, which will cost approximately £ 40 per year. These figures are estimates and should be used for guidance only. These costs do not include the costs of clocks and timers used with some ovens, these are minimal.