Choosing a Natural Gas Supplier - Pennsylvania
Safe delivery. Safe service. Even when you switch.
Did you know you have the option of where you buy your natural gas?
Because of deregulation, you have the choice to purchase your natural gas supply (which makes up approximately half of your overall bill) from the utility or from a non-utility natural gas marketer. Whatever decision you make, you can feel safe knowing that National Fuel will still be there to deliver your gas, even if the supplier you choose isn't us. It's still our job to deliver natural gas to your home or business. We'll continue to maintain the pipeline network that keeps your shower hot, your clothes dry and cooks your dinner. So even if you decide to purchase gas from someone else, you should continue to report gas emergencies and other safety problems to our 24-hour number at 1-800-444-3130.
Making A Choice
When considering other natural gas suppliers, you should take the same approach as you would in contracting for other services for your home. Ask about rates, request references and take the time to speak with current customers. To view our list of questions, click here.
If you choose to buy gas from a marketer, National Fuel will send you a letter to confirm your intent. Your account will be updated automatically, and you will continue to receive bills from National Fuel. The bill will show both the National Fuel delivery charges and the marketer's gas supply charges.
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) must license and National Fuel must authorize natural gas suppliers seeking to sell natural gas to customers on our utility pipeline system. Although we cannot recommend a particular supplier or guarantee its performance, we can provide you with a list of authorized natural gas suppliers. To view this list of authorized natural gas suppliers, please see below.
Understanding Your Gas Bill
Under the traditional arrangement, National Fuel purchases gas for you, passes on that cost without mark up, and delivers the gas supply to you at a regulated rate that includes our costs of doing business. To assist you in understanding your natural gas bill so that you can make a choice of natural gas suppliers, and to help you differentiate between your supplier costs and the delivery costs, your bill format lists Gas Supply Charges and Delivery Service Charges separately. Click here to view a sample of what this section may look like on your bill.
Gas Supply Charges are the actual costs of the natural gas you purchased from National Fuel, or, if you choose, from an authorized natural gas supplier.
Delivery Service Charges are the costs of delivering gas to you through National Fuel's pipeline system, which is owned and operated by the Utility. These costs are regulated by the state regulatory agencies in New York and Pennsylvania and are the same price for all of our customers, no matter which supplier you choose.
If you choose to purchase your gas from another supplier, National Fuel will be notified of your decision, and we will send you a letter confirming your intent to switch. Your account will be updated automatically and depending on the supplier, you may receive a separate bill for your gas supply from your new gas provider and a bill for the delivery service from National Fuel.
Price to Compare
Compare National Fuel's current gas commodity charge listed on the back of your gas bill under Gas Supply Charges with the rate offered by other eligible suppliers: The current total price to compare is $0.31905 per ccf. This rate is typically adjusted quarterly (February, May, August, and November) to the commodity market price.
Questions to Ask Gas Suppliers
When considering natural gas suppliers, you should use the same thorough approach you take in contracting other services for your home or business. The more research you do, the more educated your decision will be. Here is a list of questions designed to help you make a choice that is right for you:
- Were you found eligible by the New York State Public Service Commission or Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, as applicable, and National Fuel to provide sales service in National Fuel's service territory? (Please note that National Fuel's determination of eligibility is not an endorsement of that supplier's service or reputation).
- How long have you been a natural gas supplier? How many customers do you have?
- What are your rates and how do they compare to my current rates?
- Are your prices fixed, or can they go up or down during the year as gas costs change?
- What are my payment options? Do you have balanced billing, direct pay or accept credit card payments? Do you charge for these services?
- What is the term of the contract? Will I be penalized if I break the contract?
- What happens if I move from my current address?
- Does your price include all fees and taxes? Do you assess a late payment charge?
- How can I be sure that my bills are accurate?
- Is a basic service charge assessed even if I don't use any gas?
- Can an energy assistance grant like LIHEAP/HEAP or Neighbor for Neighbor be applied to my account?
- How will I be billed? Will I receive a consolidate bill or separate bills from the Utility and the Natural Gas Supplier?
- Who will I call for billing questions? What are your business hours?
- Do you provide any other energy-related services?
- What happens if your company folds while I am under contract with you?
- Will your price be less than what I would have paid as a customer of National Fuel?
- What special services do you offer handicapped, elderly or payment-troubled customers?
- Do you have a special low-income or senior citizen discount rate?
- Do you offer discounts based on gas volume used?
- Do you have a small business rate?
- Where do you obtain your gas supplies?
- Will I be required to pay a security deposit or make advance payments?
- Are you authorized to terminate my gas service without initiating a transfer of my service back to the utility?
Authorized Gas Suppliers
Please click on the link below to find a listing of authorized suppliers by category:
Pennsylvania Authorized SATS Suppliers
National Fuel Photo Identification
National Fuel would like to remind its customers that persons coming to their home on behalf of the Utility carry photo identification.
- National Fuel's employees DO have need to visit customers' homes for operational purposes including meter reading, construction work and in the case of an emergency. These persons will carry an identification card and will produce that identification without resistance if asked for it.
- National Fuel employees do NOT visit customers' homes to discuss account matters, to view a customer's gas bill or to ask them to sign any sort of agreement.
Click here to learn more.
Energy Choices for Residential Customers
Since the early 1980s, gas utilities in Pennsylvania have been providing transportation service for larger, nonresidential customers who contracted with a natural gas supplier to secure gas supplies. More recently, the state governments have decided to bring the benefits of energy choice to small businesses and residential customers, so non-utility suppliers have begun to market their services to these customers.
As part of the Natural Gas Choice and Competition Act, utility companies must allow customers to access competitive gas supplies sold by PUC-licensed natural gas suppliers. You may view National Fuel's filing, but note that it will open up in Adobe Acrobat Reader. Click on the following link to proceed: Natural Gas Choice and Competition Act Filing Docket No. R-00994785
Important Notice: Electronic versions of official documents may differ from the hard copy version available from National Fuel. Information provided on this Web site is intended to provide immediate access to the substance of documents; however, appendices may be omitted from the text. Due to software differences, footnotes may be omitted from the text; document words and lines spacing, text position and page numbers may differ from the hard copy version. Although results may vary depending on your software package, it is recommended that downloading and printing be performed. To obtain documents in hard copy, please contact Rates & Regulatory Affairs by telephone at (716) 857-6824 or by e-mail.
Eligible Customer Lists - Customer Preference
Pursuant to an Order from the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) issued on September 23, 2013, all Pennsylvania natural gas utilities, including National Fuel, are now required to provide a list of customers eligible(Eligible Customer List or ECL) to shop for competitive natural gas supplies to licensed Natural Gas Suppliers. Customer information provided in the ECL includes name, addresses, account number, consumption/usage data and other service related attributes. Customer phone numbers and email addresses are not included in the ECL. The PUC believes that ECLs will help Natural Gas Suppliers more easily identify potential customers, tailor products to customer needs and otherwise assist in the development of a competitive retail market.
By default, all residential and small business customers are included in the ECL; however, customers have the right to opt out of the ECL. Additionally, customers may participate in the ECL but withhold access to their usage data. Opting out of the ECL will not prevent a customer from shopping for natural gas supply service from a Natural Gas Supplier but it may limit the number of solicitations a customer receives.
National Fuel protects customer data by requiring licensed Natural Gas Suppliers to log into a password-protected portion of the National Fuel web site to obtain the ECL. All licensed Natural Gas Suppliers are obligated to safeguard the confidentiality of customer information it obtains in the ECL.
National Fuel completed its initial solicitation of its customers' preferences for the ECL during January 2014. If you asked National Fuel to share your account information with others or did not provide any preference during the initial solicitation, your information will be included in the ECL. If you choose to opt out of the ECL, you may change your preference at any time in the future and your information will then be included in the ECL. Similarly, if you initially decided to be included in the ECL, you can opt out at a later date. If you don't make any subsequent changes, your preference will remain in effect until the next time the National Fuel solicits its customers. The PUC requires utilities to conduct an ECL solicitation every three years; the next solicitation is tentatively scheduled for late 2016.
Also, if you move and establish a new account, it will be necessary for you to indicate your ECL preference for the new account. Your prior account ECL preference will not automatically carry over to a new account.
- If you wish to change your opt out preference, click on the following link: ECL-Preference