Electric or Natural Gas for Heat for Small Space

Old 12-31-13, 06:16 AM
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Electric or Natural Gas for Heat for Small Space

I have a 40ft x 12ft space with 8ft high ceilings. It is on a separate zone, it was used as a gym that was added onto the house. The room is not used that often, maybe 4 times per week for a few hours. I have added two photos of the space so you can get a feel for the space.

The forced air natural gas heater that was used for this zone is broken. I can replace this unit and have natural gas heat in the room as all the duct work is in place. Or I can add baseboard electric heaters to the room and use electric heat.

First question is what would be less expensive to run, electric or natural gas? Or is the usage so small that it wont make much of a difference?

I did some preliminary budgets and found that buying two electric baseboard heaters would be about $400 plus installation. Replacing the natural gas unit would be about $500 plus installation. I dont know which direction to head. Any advice?
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Old 12-31-13, 09:49 AM
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If it was my house and if the room is seldom used I would go with the natuiral gas, but throttle or damper it down to a minimum. Then when and if you use it you might want to get oner of those DuraFlame infgered heaters.

Keeping it heated at a minimum will maintain the integrety of the room without damage and gas is usually cheaper. But using the infered will allow you to get quick heat at a minimum cost.
Old 12-31-13, 11:44 AM
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Welcome to the forums.

In NJ I'd stick with natural gas heating too. You can keep the temp lower and it will recover faster then running electric baseboard heaters.
Old 01-04-14, 04:13 PM
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I live in NJ. Gas runs about 4 to 5 times the cost per KWH or Therm as electricity.

The equipment and installation is much less for electric. Running wires is usually cheaper than plumbing and gas lines. A furnace and radiators are way more expensive than electric heaters.

Electric heat usually does not supply as much heat as similar size gas systems. So it will take longer to raise the temp of the room.

Electric is easier to turn on and off when you leave and enter the room, but you already have gas in a separate zone..

On the other hand if the cost of energy goes way up 10 years from now, you will wish you had bought gas.

What are the quotes for installing a new furnace vs the cost of an electric system?

What furnace brand and type are you considering?

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