how much electricity does a gas dryer use

How Much Electricity Does a Gas Dryer Use?

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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In the quest for energy efficiency and sustainability, understanding the electricity consumption of household appliances is crucial. Gas dryers are popular choices due to their efficiency and cost-effectiveness. However, it is essential to explore how much electricity gas dryers consume to make informed decisions about their usage.

In our article, we delve into the factors affecting the electricity consumption of gas dryers, their efficiency, and strategies for optimizing their energy usage.

Let’s get started!

Types of Gas Dryers and Their Electricity Usage

Gas dryers can be categorized into two types based on their ignition systems: standing pilot ignition dryers and electronic ignition dryers. The electricity usage of each type differs.

1. Standing Pilot Ignition Dryers

These dryers use a small, continuously burning pilot flame to ignite the gas burner when the dryer is in use. They require a small amount of electricity to power the pilot flame and control the dryer’s functions. However, electricity usage is minimal compared to an electric dryer since the heat is generated by burning natural gas or propane.

2. Electronic Ignition Dryers

Electronic ignition dryers are more common in modern appliances. Instead of a standing pilot flame, these dryers use an electronic ignition system to ignite the gas burner. They have electronic controls and sensors that require electricity to operate the dryer’s various functions. The electricity usage of electronic ignition dryers is slightly higher than that of standing pilot ignition dryers but still significantly lower than electric dryers.

Electronic ignition dryers

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Electricity Consumption of a Gas Dryer

To calculate the electricity consumption of a clothes dryer, you’ll need to consider both the gas and electrical components. Clothes dryers primarily use natural gas for heating but still require electricity to power the motor, control panel, and other electrical components.

Here’s a step-by-step guide to calculating the electricity consumption of a gas dryer:

1. Determine the wattage of the electrical components

The wattage rating indicates the amount of electrical power consumed by the dryer. It encompasses the motor, control panel, lights, and other electrical components. You can find this information in the manufacturer’s specifications, user manual, or a label attached to the dryer. The wattage is typically provided in either watts (W) or kilowatts (kW).

2. Calculate the energy usage per hour

Once you determine how many watts the dryer uses, you can calculate the energy usage per hour by multiplying the wattage by how many hours the dryer operates daily. For example, if your clothes dryer has a wattage rating of 500 watts and you run it for 2 hours per day, the energy usage would be 500 watts * 2 hours = 1,000 watt-hours, which is equivalent to 1 kilowatt-hour (kWh).

3. Determine the operating days per month

Estimate the days you typically use the clothes dryer in a month. This number can vary depending on your usage patterns, climate, and personal preferences. Let’s say you use the dryer for 15 days in a month.

4. Calculate the monthly energy consumption

To determine the monthly energy consumption, multiply the energy usage per hour (in kilowatt-hours) by the number of hours the dryer operates daily. Then multiply that by the number of working days in a month. Continuing with the previous example, if your clothes dryer consumes 1 kWh per day and you use it for 15 days in a month, the monthly energy consumption would be 1 kWh * 15 days = 15 kWh.

Calculating the Cost of Running a Gas Dryer

Calculating the Cost

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To calculate the electric cost of running a gas dryer, you need to determine the power consumption of the clothes dryer and the cost of electricity in your area. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Find your gas dryer’s power consumption and calculate the energy consumption as worked out above.
  2. Determine the cost of electricity: Contact your electricity provider or check your electricity bill to find the cost of electricity in kilowatt-hours (kWh). The cost is usually given in cents or dollars per kilowatt-hour. Let’s assume the cost of electricity is $0.15 per kilowatt-hour.
  3. Calculate the electric cost: Multiply the energy consumption (in kWh) by the cost of electricity (in dollars per kWh). Using the previous example:

Electric cost = Energy (kWh) x Cost of electricity ($/kWh)

= 1.5 kWh x $0.15/kWh

= $0.225

So, running your clothes dryer for 1 hour would cost approximately $0.225 in electricity.

Factors Influencing How Much Electricity a Gas Dryer Uses

While clothes dryers primarily rely on natural gas for their heat source, they still require electricity to power various components. Here are some key factors that can impact the electricity consumption of a clothes dryer:

  1. Gas Ignition: Gas dryers typically use an electric igniter to ignite the gas and create the heat necessary for drying. The ignition process consumes electricity, and the efficiency of the igniter can affect energy usage.
  2. Drum Rotation: The drum inside the dryer rotates to tumble and mix the clothes for even drying. The motor responsible for rotating the drum requires electricity, and its efficiency can affect the overall energy consumption.
  3. Air Circulation: Clothes dryer-use a blower or fan to circulate hot air throughout the drum. The efficiency of the blower motor and its ability to move air effectively impact energy usage.
  4. Heat Control: Gas dryers may have various heat settings determining the clothes’ temperature. Higher heat settings can consume more electricity, as the heating elements require more power to reach and maintain higher temperatures.
  5. Drying Time: The duration of the drying cycle also affects electricity consumption. Longer drying times require the clothes dryer to operate for extended periods, increasing energy usage.
  6. Load Size: The amount of laundry dried in each cycle can impact energy consumption. Larger loads like pillows in the dryer may require more time and energy to dry thoroughly.
  7. Ventilation: Proper venting of the dryer is essential for efficient operation. If the vent is blocked or restricted, the dryer may take longer to dry the clothes, increasing energy consumption.
  8. Energy Efficiency Rating: Gas dryers’ energy efficiency ratings indicate how efficiently they use electricity. Energy Star appliances consume less electricity for the same drying workload.

Tips on Reducing How Much Energy a Gas Dryer Use

Reducing on cost

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Here are some tips to help you reduce the energy consumption of your gas dryer:

  1. Full loads: Try to run your gas dryer with full loads whenever possible. Running partial loads wastes energy and resources. If you have smaller loads, consider air-drying them instead.
  2. Proper loading: Avoid overloading your dryer, as it can lead to inefficient drying. On the other hand, don’t overload it; the clothes need room to tumble and dry properly.
  3. Pre-drying: Before using your gas dryer, consider removing excess moisture by air-drying your clothes. For example, hang them on a clothesline or use a drying rack indoors. This can significantly reduce drying time.
  4. Clean the lint filter: Regularly clean the lint filter before each drying cycle. A clogged filter reduces airflow and makes your dryer work harder, consuming more energy. Clean filters also prevent potential fire hazards.
  5. Use moisture sensors: If your clothes dryer has a moisture sensor option, use it. Moisture sensors detect when clothes are dry and automatically shut off the dryer, preventing unnecessary drying time.
  6. Different fabrics: Sort your clothes based on fabric type and weight. Lightweight fabrics dry faster than heavy ones, especially when you use fabric softener, so drying them together wastes energy. Separate them and dry similar items together for more efficient drying.
  7. Optimize drying cycles: Take advantage of your dryer’s various drying cycle options. For lighter loads, use shorter drying cycles or lower heat settings. Experiment with different settings to find the most efficient ones for your needs.
  8. Timed drying: Instead of relying solely on the automatic sensor, consider using the timed drying feature when you have specific time requirements. This way, you can avoid over-drying and wasting energy in your energy-efficient home.
  9. Ventilation: A blocked or inefficient venting system can reduce the dryer’s efficiency and cause it to consume more energy. Regularly clean and inspect the venting system to ensure optimal airflow.
  10. Regular maintenance: Keep your gas dryer well-maintained. Clean the drum periodically, check the exhaust vent for any obstructions, and have a professional inspect your dryer annually to ensure it’s operating efficiently.

Frequently Asked Questions on How Much Electricity Does a Gas Dryer Use

Gas Dryer

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a) Which is cheaper to run, a gas or electric dryer?

As a general rule, gas dryers tend to be more cost-effective regarding operating expenses. However, when comparing gas vs electric dryers in terms of which is cheaper, it is important to consider various factors, such as energy costs in your area, the efficiency of the appliances, and usage patterns.

The initial cost of gas dryers is higher than electric dryers. To make an accurate cost comparison on gas and electric dryers, you can obtain information about energy rates from your utility company and check the energy efficiency ratings of the specific dryer models you are considering.

b) Does a gas dryer use a lot of electricity?

Gas dryers typically consume less electricity as they only use it to power their motors and control panels. They utilize natural gas to produce heat, which is more cost-effective than relying solely on electricity for heating. This makes them a more economical choice in the long run, especially in regions where natural gas is readily available and affordable.

c) How much does running a gas dryer per load cost?

The cost of running a gas dryer per load depends on various factors, such as the dryer’s energy efficiency, local utility rates, and the specific model. A gas dryer can cost approximately $0.15 to $0.30 per load, assuming a standard load size and average energy consumption.

Energy-efficient models and lower utility rates may reduce the cost per load. Additionally, proper maintenance and usage habits can contribute to overall savings in the long run.


Understanding the electricity consumption of clothes dryers is crucial for making informed decisions about energy usage and optimizing efficiency. While clothes dryers require electricity for certain components, their electricity consumption is significantly lower than that of electric dryers. Users can further minimize energy usage and enjoy the benefits of efficient and cost-effective drying by considering load size optimization, sensor technology, timed drying, proper maintenance, and venting.

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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