Built-in ovens: How to buy the best oven Gas vs electric ovens
Most of us will have a preference for the type of fuel we cook with and some of us might not have a choice. For everyone else, here’s our assessment of the good and bad points of cooking with gas or electric built-in ovens.
If you already know whether you’re looking for a gas or electric oven, go to our built-in oven reviews to find the best one for you.
Oven cooking costs – gas vs electric ovens
Gas will always be cheaper to cook with than electricity – we find out how much each oven we test costs to run by baking bricks for two hours at the same temperature you would cook a chicken at to get consistent results each time.
Based on using the oven five times a week, gas ovens cost around £20 a year to run and electric ovens cost around £40. The difference isn’t massive annually, but over the lifetime of your oven it would add up to around £120.
Oven heat distribution – gas vs electric ovens
All but the cheapest electric ovens come with oven fans to spread the heat around the oven. Fans are helpful because you can cut cooking times and reduce the temperature you cook at. They also make baking on two levels at once easier by circulating the heat.
Most gas built-in ovens don’t have fans and heat distribution suffers because of this. But, if you get to know your gas oven and adjust to it, you’ll be able to produce excellent results.
Oven temperature control – gas vs electric built-in ovens
It’s usually easier to produce an even temperature in an electric oven – oven fans help to do this, as do digital thermostats, which can be set to the degree.
In gas ovens without fans, it’s harder to achieve an even temperature throughout the oven - gas ovens are usually noticeably hotter at the top than at the bottom.
Installing a built-in oven can be tricky technically, particularly if you're installing a gas oven, so make sure you hire a professional to do the job for you.
Electric built-in oven installation
The most convenient option will usually be to pay for installation of your new oven and disposal of your old one at the time you buy your new built-in oven. Most retailers offer this service – electric installation for built-in ovens bought from Currys and John Lewis cost £85.
Gas built-in oven installation
Gas cooking appliances will need to be professionally installed by a Gas Safe-registered engineer. Retailers can arrange gas installation by qualified engineers for you – Currys and John Lewis charge £95 for this.
Independent built-in oven installation
You don’t have to use the retailer you buy your oven from to install it for you. If you’d prefer to find a qualified professional in your area, use Which? Local to find one - there are more than 5,000 Which?-member-recommended electricians and gas engineers listed.