Benefits of Propane Water Heaters

Propane water heaters offer many advantages over electric models:

  • Lower operating costs
  • Higher efficiencies
  • Quicker recovery rates
  • Smaller storage space requirements
  • Continuous hot water supply
  • More accurate temperature adjustment
  • Wider selection of sizes, installation, and venting options
  • Reduced risk of power problems


  • Propane gas water heaters cost approximately $25 less per month to operate than comparable electric units (Source: Energy Savings Calculator). On average, propane water heaters are up to one-third less expensive to operate than electric heaters.
  • Propane gas water heaters have a recovery rate nearly twice as fast as electric water heaters. That means a homeowner can get more hot water from the smaller size tank, reducing the amount of energy required to store hot water.
  • Over an average unit’s life span (approx. 10 years), propane gas water heaters can save homeowners between $3,000 and $4,000 when compared with an electric unit (according to the Energy Savings Calculator).
  • Propane gas water heaters heat more than twice as much water in an hour as a comparable electric model.
  • More than 3 million homes use propane water heaters (EIA Residential Energy Consumption Survey).


Because propane gas water heaters have a quicker recovery rate (nearly twice that of an electric water heater), they can get more hot water from the same size tank. When considering the use of space in a home, the fact that a much smaller propane water heater can do the job of a larger electric unit is an important factor. Propane models are also extremely durable and can last for many years with minimal service requirements.


The reference standard for the energy efficiency of storage water heaters is the “energy factor,” which is based on delivering 64 gallons of hot water per day, no matter what size water storage tank is used. Taking into account combustion efficiency and standby loss, the energy factor for a gas storage water heater generally ranges between 0.50 and 0.65. Smaller units have higher energy factors because their smaller volumes and surface areas result in less standby loss. For tightly sealed houses, sealed combustion or power-vented water heaters are the best.