Man has been using fire for one purpose or another since time immemorial. Since its discovery, it has been central to the establishment of communities and empires. Over time, using ovens only became more popular and widespread.
The first ovens on record were developed and used by the ancient Egyptians to bake bread and other foods. Later on, the Romans were responsible for adjusting the appearance of wood-fired ovens to the iteration that is still quite popular today. Consequently, the fact that they have stood the test of time simply draws attention to how ingenious such oven designs are.
Gas ovens are a product of the times. While using natural gas as a source of energy in the home first became prevalent in the late 18th century, gas ovens did not become popular until the mid-1820s. Since then, it seemed as though wood-fired ovens were likely to be phased out entirely as they could not compete with the convenience of gas. However, their desirability seems to be on the rise once again.
Now that there is more than one option, how do you choose which one is best for you? Here are some comparisons between gas and wood-fired ovens to act as a guide.
Wood ovens have some advantages in this category since their rustic appearance gives a stronger sense of home and comfort. Furthermore, the look, smell and sound of a blazing crackling fire can be very pleasing to experience.
On the other hand, modern gas heaters benefit from recent technologies that allow them to emit flames that appear just as natural as wood flames.
Installing a gas oven is an involving process that requires professional assistance. This distinction results from the need for well-placed gas lines and a proper connection to the main supply line. Unless you are certified to perform such duties, you cannot make any attempts to install a gas oven yourself as it becomes a matter of compromised safety.
In comparison, wood-fired ovens are easier to install since the process, in this case, is more straightforward.
Safety in the home is a significant concern for every homeowner. Therefore, it is a reasonable expectation that every device in your home is safe enough to use without causing harm or damage. On this matter, gas ovens may have the edge. The reason for this assertion is that wood ovens produce soot and smoke while burning. Over time, the soot becomes a fire hazard if it is not cleared out regularly, while the smoke may cause you or a family member to develop respiratory complications.
Moreover, wood ovens tend to produce sparks while burning. These sparks can jump and singe or burn whoever is close by and would have terrible outcomes.
There is greater public consciousness of the environment and the need to preserve and care for it. Consequently, people now gravitate towards energy-efficient devices and endeavour to be more conscientious about using energy. With such considerations in mind, gas ovens edge out wood as they are more efficient to use.
It may seem as though burning wood is a cheap option. However, deeper analysis shows that natural gas is the most cost-effective source of energy over time. Additionally, you can use gas, not just for heating, but cooking and lighting as well.
No matter how rustic and pleasing a wood fire can be, there is no disputing that it is not easy to light. You must consider how and when to use the tinder, where to place the wood for the most effective burn and how to fan the flame enough to light the wood. In contrast, lighting a gas oven requires no more effort than the push of a button.
Furthermore, if you want to adjust the heat intensity of a gas oven, there is a knob that makes it easy to get your precise desired temperature. Wood ovens require more effort to accurately determine how much wood you must add to raise the temperature enough to where you would like it to be. Once that is done, there is no definitive way of lowering the heat.
Both wood-fired and gas ovens required constant, regular maintenance to work well and retain their efficiency. However, the main difference lies in the need for wood heaters to be cleaned more due to accumulated soot and residue in the chimney. If you fail to clean your wood-fired oven, it can become a fire hazard.
Regarding gas ovens, on the other hand, regular maintenance involves the much simpler task of certifying that the lines remain well maintained. Moreover, since they do not produce soot and smoke, they require little to no cleaning.
Now that you have all the information you need, it may be easier to compare gas and wood-fired ovens. Then, all that is left for you is to decide which one better suits your needs.