Choosing between an electric boiler and an oil boiler can be a difficult decision. It’s important to understand the pros and cons of each type of heating system in order to make an informed choice. If you have any questions about this article, please let us know in the comments below!



Main difference

The main difference between an oil boiler and an electric boiler is the fuel they use. An oil boiler uses oil as its primary heat source, while an electric boiler uses electricity from the grid to heat water.

Working principle

The working principle of an electric boiler is simple. It uses a heat exchanger to transfer heat from the heating water to the cold water. This process creates steam, which then goes through a turbine (or fan) and spins it around, generating electricity for your home.

Oil boilers work in a similar way: they burn oil or gas to generate heat that is transferred into the water via pipes called flues. As this happens, steam is produced which travels through valves into pipes connected to radiators throughout your home for distribution throughout rooms where you need them most!


electric boiler vs oil boiler how it works



An electric boiler will convert 90% of its input energy into heat whereas an oil-fired one will only convert around 70%. When it comes to efficiency, electric boilers have an advantage over oil boilers. Electric boilers are more efficient because they don’t require you to burn fuel and create heat through combustion. Instead, the heat is generated through electricity which means there’s no waste product created by burning fuel or using gas in your home.

Boiler lifespan

The lifespan of an electric boiler is between 15-20 years, while the lifespan of an oil boiler is between 10-15 years.

The lifespan of an electric boiler is generally longer than that of an oil boiler. The reason for this is that heating elements in electric boilers are made from stainless steel, which is more durable than copper used to make heating elements in oil boilers.


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Installation complexity

There are a few differences in the installation process for both types of boilers. An electric boiler is easier to install than an oil boiler. Electric boilers being able to be installed in any room, as long as it has access to 240V power and water supply lines. This makes them ideal for smaller spaces such as lofts or apartments where space may be limited, but still want to take advantage of heating your home using hot water rather than radiators or central heating systems.

The installation of an oil boiler requires more work and is more complex than the installation of an electric boiler. This is because you need to run pipes through your house, which can be difficult if it’s old or has been renovated multiple times. On top of this, you have to make sure that there are enough vents in place so that exhaust fumes aren’t released into your home and cause damage or illness to those inside.


electric boiler vs oil boiler installation


Pros and cons

Electric boilers pros

Energy Efficiency: Electric boilers are highly energy-efficient, converting almost all of the energy they consume into heat. This makes them a more environmentally friendly option for heating your home.

Easy Installation: Electric boilers are typically easier to install compared to gas or oil boilers. They do not require a flue or chimney for ventilation, which can simplify the installation process.

Safety: Electric boilers do not burn any fuel, eliminating the risk of carbon monoxide leaks. This makes them a safer choice, especially for homes with children or elderly residents.

Quiet Operation: Electric boilers operate silently, without the noise associated with gas or oil boilers. This can contribute to a more peaceful living environment.

Electric boilers cons

Higher operating costs: Electricity is generally more expensive than gas or oil, so operating an electric boiler can be more costly in the long run. However, the overall cost will depend on the local energy prices and the efficiency of the specific boiler.

Limited output capacity: Electric boilers may have limited output capacity compared to other types of boilers. This means they may not be suitable for larger homes with higher heating demands.

Dependency on electricity: Electric boilers rely solely on electricity to function, so if there is a power outage, your heating system will be affected. It’s important to have a backup plan for heating during such situations.

Limited hot water supply: Electric boilers may have a limited hot water supply, meaning you may need to wait for the water to heat up again after a certain amount has been used.

Oil fired boilers pros

Energy efficiency: Oil boilers have an efficiency rating between 70% to 80%. This means that most of the fuel utilized is converted into heat energy and not wasted, making oil boilers an excellent choice for reducing energy bills.

Availability: Oil is widely available, especially in rural areas where access to natural gas is limited.

Durability: Oil boilers are built to withstand harsh weather conditions and can last for a long time with proper maintenance.

Can heat large areas: Oil boilers are an excellent choice for heating large buildings, such as factories or warehouses. They can generate higher BTUs (British Thermal Units) than other boiler types, which makes them great for larger spaces.

Oil fired boilers cons

Higher operating costs: Heating oil prices can fluctuate and be more expensive than other heating fuels including natural gas. This makes the operating costs for oil boilers relatively high.

Need for regular maintenance: Oil boilers require annual upkeep to maintain peak efficiency and avoid potential malfunctions. If left unattended, it can lead to higher repair costs or a complete breakdown.

Environmentally harmful emissions: The burning of fuel oil can contaminate the air, contributing to air pollution. Oil heat can also produce higher carbon emissions in comparison to other boiler types.

Limited installation locations: Oil boilers require storage tanks that can be large and take up space in positioned locations that are away from combustible materials and not in potentially hazardous areas.


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Upfront installation cost

When it comes to the upfront installation cost, oil boilers are more expensive than electric ones. In fact, the average installation costs for an electric boiler are $1,400-$2,000 while those for an oil boiler can range from $2,000-$4,000 or more.

Home heating cost

While both electric and oil boilers are a good choice for heating your home, there are some major differences in their cost of operation.

Electric Boiler: The average annual cost of running an electric boiler is $1,379 (or $144/month). So you’ll likely save money over time if you choose this option.

Oil Boiler: If your home uses natural gas as its main source of heat, then it’s best to go with an oil-fired model because it can be more efficient than electric models when it comes to fuel consumption and emissions control. However, the average annual operating cost for this type of system is $1,470 (or $152/month). That’s about 5% higher than what owners pay for electric systems!

Maintenance cost

The cost of maintaining an oil boiler is higher than that of an electric one. With electric boilers, you’ll need to service the system only once or twice a year. The servicing includes checking the pressure and temperature sensors, flushing out any deposits from inside the system, and topping up any lost water levels with fresh coolant. The cost for this service can to $50-$100 per year.

The servicing of an oil boiler consists of cleaning the flue, removing impurities from water or flue gases, and replacing parts such as nozzles or burners if necessary. The cost for this service can be up to $100-$300 per year depending on how often you use your heating system throughout the year.


electric boiler vs oil boiler cost


How to choose

When it comes to choosing between an oil boiler and an electric boiler, there are a few things you need to consider.

  1. Cost of installation. In the long run, it’s important to consider how much it will cost to install and maintain your boiler system. If you want an electric boiler that uses less energy than an oil-fired system, for example, you may need to pay extra for special wiring or a larger wiring box in the basement.
  2. Fuel costs. The price of fuel can vary widely depending on where you live and what type of fuel is used by local utilities or suppliers (coal vs natural gas). If these prices are higher than those charged by oil companies, then switching might be worth considering–but only if there are significant savings involved!
  3. Maintenance costs. They’re often included with installation fees when buying new equipment like boilers. However, if they aren’t included then there could be additional expenses down the line when something breaks down unexpectedly while still under warranty period coverage limits.


As you can see, there are many factors to consider when choosing between an oil boiler and an electric boiler. The most important thing is to look at your specific needs and decide which type of appliance will work best for you. If you have questions about whether an oil or electric boiler would be better suited for your home, contact us today: +0086 186-2391-5479!


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About Dabonn

About Dabonn

Zhengzhou Dabonn Energy Co., Ltd.

We have more than 20 years of experience in boiler system equipment research and development and manufacturing. And committed to designing and producing boilers that suit your needs, including fire-tube, water-tube, and steam boilers, while also staying up-to-date with the latest technological boiler.

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