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British Gas vs EDF (2024 Comparison)

Lasted Updated: 19th January 2024

When looking a switching energy suppliers, British Gas and EDF are two names that you are likely to both recognise and consider switching to.

In this article we will look at the two energy suppliers, comparing them on a range of areas like tariffs, price, customer reviews, complaints performance and website/app usability.

By the end of our comparison, hopefully, you’ll have a better idea of which supplier may be the best of the two for you.

For those who aren’t aware of the two companies, here is a brief summary:

Who is British Gas?

British Gas is the UK’s leading energy and home services provider, known for supplying gas and electricity to millions of households across the country. Established over two centuries ago, it has a rich history rooted in the early days of gas production. Today, British Gas offers a range of services beyond energy supply, including boiler installations, home insurance, and smart home solutions. For many Britons, when they think of an energy supplier, they think of British Gas. You can find out more in our British Gas review here.

Who are EDF?

EDF, based in France, is a leading global energy company specialising in electricity and gas supply. With a strong presence in Europe, the US, and beyond, they serve residential, commercial, and industrial sectors. EDF is renowned for its extensive services, from energy efficiency to renewable energy production. Their notable commitment to nuclear power sees them operating several nuclear plants worldwide. You can find out more in our EDF review here.

EDF vs British Gas: What’s the difference in tariff options?

Firstly, let’s look at what types of tariffs are available if you are looking to switch to either supplier and see how they compare. Both offer fixed tariffs and a variable option but what are the differences? 

EDF

EDF offers 3 tariffs to choose from. One variable tariff and one fixed tariff. Here are the full details:

Standard Variable

– Rates can go up or down over time in line with Ofgem Price Cap
– No exit fees or end date
– Smart meter not required
– Does not claim 100% renewable electricity

EDF Essentials

– A fixed tariff with either a 1-year or 3-year term
– Exit fees of £150 per fuel for both tariffs
– Discount for paying by direct debit
– Smart meter required (available for free if you do not already have one)
– 100% renewable electricity

British Gas

British Gas offers customers three types of tariff. Much like EDF, the tariffs include a fixed-term option and a variable tariff for customers who don’t want to be locked in with a contract. They also have a tariff for Pay As You Go customers available. Below we take a look at these tariffs in more detail:

Fixed Energy Tariff

– Choose a fixed tariff rate for either 12 or 24 months for fixed bills each month.
– If energy prices increase, your tariff will stay the same. 
– Exit fees of £75 per fuel if you choose to leave your contract early.
– Customers on this tariff can also choose to sign up for PeakSave, a scheme that rewards customers for mindful energy usage.
– Ofgem caps don’t apply to this tariff.
– 100% renewable electricity
– No smart meter requirement

Standard Variable Tariff

– This is a tariff available to customers who pay via direct debit.
– There is no end date for this type of tariff and you can leave whenever you wish to with no exit fees.
– Variable tariffs go up and down and customers will be provided with notice before any price changes.
– Customers on this tariff can also choose to sign up for PeakSave, a scheme that rewards customers for mindful energy usage.
– Ofgem caps apply to this tariff.
– Does not include 100% renewable electricity
– No smart meter requirement

Safeguard PAYG

– For those on Pay as You Go meters.
– There are neither exit fees nor a predefined termination date associated with this tariff.
– Variable tariffs may experience fluctuations, and customers will receive prior notification of any price adjustments.
– Ofgem caps are applicable to this tariff.
Conclusion: EDF has slightly more to offer with the addition of a 3-year fixed deal. Neither supplier offers ‘smart tariffs’. EDF does require a smart meter for their fixed tariffs, however, whereas British Gas doesn’t. EDF also charge double the exit fees for their fixed-term tariffs. This one is close, but British Gas just clinches it.

British Gas vs EDF: What’s the difference in price?

One of the most important factors when looking to change your supplier is how they compare on price. We asked for online quotes from both energy providers, using the following criteria:

  • Dual fuel supply
  • Standard Meter
  • 2,900 kWh of electricity and 12,000 kWh of gas (Medium usage – 3-bedroom house occupied by a family of 4)
  • Postcode in the East Midlands
  • Payment by Direct Debit

Please be aware that just changing one of these factors is likely to change your quote, so please just consider these prices as an indication.

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Here are the monthly costs for each of the British Gas tariffs we looked at earlier in our comparison: 

Tariff NameTariff DescriptionMonthly Cost
Safeguard PAYGA tariff for prepayment customers. No exit fees.£156.74 per month
Standard Variable Tariff v14Variable tariff. Rates and charges that may fluctuate over time, within the Ofgem Price Cap£156.74 per month
The Fixed One v25This is a 12-month fixed tariff at a rate with an exit fee of £75 per fuel.£167.18 per month
These prices include a Direct Debit discount. The Standard variable tariff is £167.40 per month and The Fixed One is £178.58 without Direct Debit.

As you can see, there is currently over £10 a month difference between the British Gas variable and fixed tariffs. This may not sound much, but it does add up to £120+ over the course of a year. For that extra £10 however, you are getting a guaranteed fixed rate on your energy costs for a year plus renewable electricity.

Here is how the monthly cost of the EDF tariffs compared: 

Tariff NameTariff DescriptionMonthly Cost
Standard VariableVariable rate tariff, no exit fees or end date.£157 per month
EDF Essentials (3-year fix)3-year fixed tariff. £150 per fuel exit fees.£163 per month
EDF Essentials (1-year fix)1-year fixed tariff. £150 per fuel exit fee.£164 per month
These prices include a Direct Debit discount. The Standard Variable tariff is £168, both EDF Essentials tariffs are £172 without Direct Debit.

There is an even smaller difference between the monthly costs of EDF’s fixed and variable tariffs, with the 3-year and 1-year fixed tariffs costing virtually the same.

Conclusion: When it comes to price, both EDF and British Gas are very close. Their variable tariff costs are effectively the same, with EDF being slightly cheaper with their fixed-term tariffs. They do have much higher exit fees however which could wipe out your savings if you change supplier before your fixed term ends. This round is a draw.

British Gas vs EDF: Who offers the greenest energy?

British Gas and EDF are both regarded as highly green energy companies. In fact, they are two of the best-known renewable electricity and gas suppliers in the U.K.

All of British Gas’ fixed tariffs are matched 100% with renewable electricity meaning that you are one step closer to net zero. They do not offer renewable electricity with their variable tariffs, however.

The Green Future Tariff from British Gas goes even further: 100% of your CO2 footprint from your gas use is balanced by carbon-cutting projects around the world (90%), and renewable biogas made from food and farm waste (10%). You’ll also protect five trees in the UK per fuel for each year of your green energy tariff, contributing to cleaner air and improving natural habitats (source).

This tariff has also been awarded the gold standard by Uswitch – one of the only three energy suppliers to achieve this accreditation. This tariff is not currently available but may be back in the future.

EDF has really proven their commitment to being an eco-friendly energy provider over recent years. They claim to be the biggest generator of zero-carbon electricity (source), with wind, nuclear and solar projects all combining to give them this title.

Similarly to British Gas, they also offer 100% renewable electricity on their fixed tariffs, but not on their variable tariffs. They don’t appear to offer anything that compares to the ‘Green Future Tariff’ from British Gas either.

Conclusion: EDF are the bigger renewable electricity producer, but don’t offer anything over British Gas when it actually comes to electricity or gas supplier to customers. With British Gas’ green tariff currently unavailable, this round is a draw.

British Gas vs EDF: Who has better customer reviews?

Reviews from other customers are a great way to gauge how good these energy suppliers are actually going to be if you join them. To see how they compare, we looked at both the overall Trustpilot score and looked at a variety of individual reviews for each supplier.

Here are their overall Trustpilot scores:

  • British Gas scored 3.9 out of 5 based on over 164,000 reviews (source)
  • EDF scored 4.2 out of 5 based on over 65,000 reviews (source)

50% of British Gas customers rated them 5 stars, whereas 29% gave them only a 1-star review. The reviews for British Gas are slightly complicated because they don’t just cover energy supply customers, they also include boiler services and other products the company offers.

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Looking at just reviews regarding energy supply, customers often praised British Gas for being “a one-stop shop” for your energy-related needs, being quick to solve any switching issues and being able to speak to someone when you need to.

Looking at the negative reviews, there was a focus on the app being poor, billing issues and long waits to get these resolved and generally poor customer service.

Looking at EDF, a much higher proportion gave them a 5-star review (73%). Only 15% of customers gave them a 1-star review.

Positive feedback generally mentioned their good customer service and being quick to fix issues. They also praised competitive prices. When looking at the negative reviews, customers complained about smart meter installation and issues getting credit back. There were also complaints about their customer service.

Conclusion: EDF clearly performs better when it comes to customer reviews. They have a higher overall score, a much higher proportion of 5-star reviews and a lower proportion of 1-star reviews.

British Gas vs EDF: Who has the better website and app?

British Gas and EDF both offer their customers an app as well as user-friendly websites. Having the option to manage energy accounts online and via an app is pretty standard these days, but does one supplier have a better offering than the other?

Both apps can be used to update personal details, review bills, submit meter readings and review usage.

Let’s take a closer look at how the two apps compare in further detail: 

British Gas’ app has a score of 2.5/5 based on 34,000 reviews and EDF’s app has a score of 4.5/5 based on over 109,000 reviews.

The British Gas app has low reviews due to some common themes – no real-time accuracy and the app often crashing. This understandably causes a lot of frustration for customers. 

Many British Gas customers prefer to log in online using a desktop it seems as the website offers far better functionality.

The EDF app is generally reviewed much more positively. With few complaints, customers praise how easy it is to submit meter readings and how fast the app is.

Conclusion: EDF wins when it comes to app functionality and its website. Customers seem generally happy with a good review score on the App Store.

British Gas vs EDF: Who has the better customer service?

To find the best impartial customer service information, we referred to the Citizens Advice website, where you can find supplier-specific customer service comparisons. Citizens Advice conducts its own survey every 3 months and provides feedback on each supplier for a variety of factors.

Here are the key customer service factors for our two suppliers:

British GasEDF
Average call centre wait time03:26:0000:58:00
% emails responded to within 2 days91.4%97.3%
% customers with an accurate bill93.8%98.7%
Switches completed < 15 days99.4%99.8%
Opening hoursMonday to Friday:
9 am – 5 pm
Monday to Friday:
8 am – 6 pm
Contact via PhoneYesYes
Contact via EmailYesYes
Contact via WebchatYesYes
Source: Citizens Advice

Both energy suppliers perform reasonably well based on various customer service scoring factors. EDF answers phone calls quicker than British Gas and provides customers with accurate bills more often too. They also generally reply to emails faster. 

Neither not operates its phone lines during weekends, but EDF does offer longer opening hours during the week.

Conclusion: EDF performs better on every metric looked at above, so they are clear winners when it comes to customer service.

British Gas vs EDF: Who has fewer complaints?

Each supplier has to publish quarterly complaints data publicly. To get an understanding of how often each supplier receives complaints and how quick they are to resolve them when they do, we have put the below comparison together.

British GasEDF
Complaints per 100k customers1,7862,547
Resolved per 100k customers1,8172,335
Resolved next working day61.6%57.68%
Resolved in 8 weeks87.6%91.53%
Sources: British Gas Q1 2023. EDF Q2 2023

EDF receives more complaints than British Gas per 100k customers, they are also slower at resolving these, with a lower percentage resolved the next working day. They do perform slightly better when it comes to complaints being resolved after 8 weeks, however.

Conclusion: With fewer complaints and more complaints resolved the next day, British Gas are the clear winners when it comes to customer complaints.

British Gas vs EDF: What are the main differences between the two?

AreaSummaryWinner
Tariff OptionsThis is very close, but British Gas doesn’t require a smart meter and has lower exit fees.British Gas
PriceThe two suppliers scored similarly when it came to price, EDF were slightly cheaper but had much higher exit fees.Draw
Greenest EnergyBoth suppliers offer the same when it comes to green energy to customers.Draw
Customer ReviewsWith higher scores, EDF wins when it comes to customer reviews.EDF
Website/AppWhen we compare their website and apps, EDF wins thanks to its easy-to-use app and user-friendly website.EDF
Customer ServiceEDF came out on top for customer service. They are open for longer hours during the week and offer lower call waiting times.EDF
ComplaintsBritish Gas scored higher for resolving customer complaints. They responded faster and had fewer complaints in the first place.British Gas

Is British Gas or EDF the better supplier?

This is a close one. We have 2 draws with EDF winning 3 categories and British Gas winning the other 2. Due to better customer reviews, better customer service and a better app, EDF just won this one overall.

Other comparisons

If you are looking a British Gas or EDF as a potential supplier to switch to, we have some other comparisons you may be interested in:

British Gas

EDF

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Rob
Rob

Hi, I'm Rob and I run Energy-Review.co.uk. I initially started this project 5 years ago when I was looking to switch energy suppliers and found there wasn't a website that provided simple, data backed reviews on all the suppliers available. Since then, I spent have a lot of time (too much some may say!) looking at all publicly available data about each supplier and writing reviews using this information. These reviews are updated as regularly as possible and any data is backed up by a source where necessary. I have also started writing guides on various energy related topics which hopefully you will find useful. If you find any issues, please use our contact form to let us know.

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