CUSTOMER SERVICE FAQ’S

1. Why does my bill change from month to month?
2. How do I read my meter?
3. What can I do to lower my Consumption?
4. How can I enroll in the Budget Billing Plan?
5. How do I apply for a new service line to be installed?
6. How can I pay my bill?
7. Why do I need to pay a security deposit?
8. Who can service my Natural Gas Appliances?
9. I have turned my thermostat down to the bottom, why am I still using gas?
10. Why are you changing my meter?
11. Why does my account number change when I move?

1. Why does my bill change from month to month?

Unless you are on our Budget Billing Plan your gas bill will vary from one billing to the next. If the amount on your bill is significantly different than you expect, consider these possible factors:

  • Seasonal changes
  • Sudden weather changes
  • Household occupants
  • Vacations away from home
  • Home renovations
  • Upgrade or addition of household appliances
  • Number of billing days (Days of Service)
  • Holiday gatherings (i.e. additional guests)
  • Rate changes

Seasonal Changes

Heating costs in winter will definitely cause an increase in your bill. Similarly, the summer may bring increased costs, for example operating a swimming pool heater or your natural gas barbeque. When the weather is colder, you and your family members may take longer and hotter showers.

Sudden Weather Changes


Was there a sudden cold or warm spell during the billing period? Note that cold, windy weather can have a major impact on the cost of heating your home if it is not well insulated.

Household Occupants


New baby? Kids home from university? Visitors? This could mean extra loads of laundry, showers and dishwashing – and increased energy consumption.

Vacations

When you are away from home, you may expect energy costs to go down. However, you may find that your energy consumption has stayed the same or even increased for various reasons. Your furnace, for example, will turn on automatically when the temperature in your home drops below the thermostat setting. Remember also that when you return home, you may need to do extra laundry, and also require additional heating to bring your home back to a comfortable level.

Renovations

During renovations sometimes doors or windows may be open more than normal and there may be increased traffic with contractors going in and out. Also, drywalling and painting usually require additional heat in the building to dry and cure. Also consider if your recent renovation has added additional space to your home.

Changes in Your Home


Have you purchased a new appliance or upgraded to a more efficient natural gas furnace or appliance? Expect changes in your bill.

Number of Monthly Billing Days

How many billing days are in the billing period compared to previous billing periods? Months with more days will result in higher bills. Our monthly and bi-monthly billing periods typically range from 24 – 62 days.

Holiday Gatherings


Celebrating special events can impact your energy costs. Additional guests in your home can increase cooking, baking and heating, as well as hot water consumption for showers, loads of laundry and washing dishes.

Rate Changes

If the price of gas has changed, your bill will change as a result.


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2. How do I read my meter?

Pacific Northern Gas Ltd. uses imperial meters. Imperial meters measure gas use in hundreds of feet. We also use two styles of meters: digital index registers and clock-style registers.

Digital index registers

Reading a digital index register is as easy as reading your car’s odometer. Each digital meter is clearly marked to show imperial measurement.

To find out how much gas you’ve used since your last statement, subtract your last reading from your current reading. Easy!

Clock-style registers


Reading a clock-style register is not hard once you get the hang of it. If you have a clock-style meter, read the dials from 0-9, either clockwise or counter clockwise as indicated on the dial. If the hand is between numbers, read the smaller number — so if the pointer is between 4 and 5, record 4

Here’s how to find out how much gas you’ve used since your last statement:
Take your present reading: 15,800
Subtract your previous reading (you’ll find this on your statement): 7,400
Gas used: 8,400 cubic feet


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3. What can I do to lower my Consumption?

Make your home more energy efficient:

  • Increase Insulation
  • Stop air leaks
  • Install energy efficient windows
  • Upgrade to newer more energy efficient natural gas appliances
  • Keep on top of your heating requirements by turning down your thermostat whenever you can

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4. How can I enroll in the Budget Billing Plan?

Do you realize that more than half of your annual heating bill comes from the three coldest months of the year?

Instead of facing the stress of higher bills every winter (when you’re already paying for the holidays!), rely on our Budget Billing Plan.

How it works

Our Budget Billing Plan helps you manage your payments and cash flow more easily. Your estimated gas use and charges are divided into 11 equal installments.

PDF Form | Budget Billing Plan Info


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5. How do I apply for a new service line to be installed?

Please contact our Customer Care Center at 1 (800) 667-2297 during business hours Monday to Friday 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM Pacific Time, and our Customer Service representatives will be pleased to schedule a site visit by one of our Construction Supervisors.


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6. Can I pay my bill by credit card or what other payment methods do you offer?

Payment and plan options

Ways to pay your bill:

  • Pre-authorized Payment Plan (click here)
  • Send a cheque or money order through the mail
  • Telephone or internet banking
  • At your financial institution
  • Drop a cheque in one of our drop boxes (call us for locations)
  • Pay by Visa or MasterCard through our website (click here to make your payment online)

Note regarding credit card payments

This is a user-pay service and is provided by a third party (Caledon Card Services). If you use this service, Caledon Card Services will charge a convenience fee based on the amount of your payment. We have arranged this service as a convenience to you. PNG does not receive any part of the convenience fee. Please allow 3 business days for your payment to be received by Pacific Northern Gas.

Important: If you are making a payment in response to a Notice of Disconnection, please call 1-800-667-2297 during business hours Monday to Friday, 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM Pacific Time to inform us of your payment.

Pre-Authorized Payment Plan
It’s one less thing to worry about! Pacific Northern Gas helps make your life easier with the automatic withdrawal of your gas bill payment from your bank account.

Our Pre-Authorized Payment Plan saves you time, cheque-writing and postage – and avoids any possibility of missed payments or late payment charges when you’re busy or out of town.
You will continue to receive a monthly or bi-monthly statement.

To enroll, please print and complete the authorization form and mail it in with a cheque (marked void) from the bank account you want to use for your Pre-Authorized Payments.

click here to make your payment online.


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7. Why do I need to pay a security deposit?

To ensure that Pacific Northern Gas is adequately protected against losses and to be fair to the majority of customers who have established a good payment history, we reserve the right to request any residential or commercial customer to provide a security deposit. This is standard practice among all utilities in Canada.

A security deposit may be required if you are:

  • A new customer without a credit history with us; or
  • An existing customer with a less than satisfactory payment history; or
  • A commercial customer.

Security deposits will be refunded after 12 consecutive months of on-time payments on residential accounts and 36 months of on-time payments on commercial accounts. Interest is paid on security deposits every January and will show as a credit on your first bill of the year.

A Customer who has previously established a good payment record with us will not be required to pay a security deposit if they move.


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8. Who can I get to service my Natural Gas Appliances?

No Heat?

You Might Be Able to Solve the Problem Yourself!

Things to check before calling a heating contractor

Check the following before you phone a heating contractor. You may be able to avoid a service charge by solving the problem yourself.

  • If your heating system thermostat has settings for both heating and cooling, set it to the heat position.
  • Turn up the thermostat a few degrees and see if your heating system comes on.
  • Ensure that your warm air registers and cold air returns are free of furniture, drapes, rugs and any other items that could restrict air circulation.
  • Check the fuse or circuit breaker (located in the main electrical panel of your home). The fuse may need replacing or the breaker may need to be reset.
  • Ensure that the furnace power switch (similar to a light switch located near the furnace) is in the on position.
  • Check that the furnace filter is clean. Before opening the furnace to check, turn off the furnace power switch. After checking the condition of the filter, close the furnace access panel and turn the power switch back on.
  • If the furnace has a standing or continuously burning pilot light, check that it’s lit.
  • If the pilot needs re-lighting, follow the instructions on the furnace plate or sticker or in the manufacturer’s booklet. If you have any difficulty, call a licensed heating contractor.

How do I find heating contractors servicing my area?

Narrow your search down to only professionals qualified to work on natural gas equipment. Review more than one contractor by doing some comparison shopping. Be suspicious of anyone who shows up at your door uninvited offering a special deal.

To find HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning) contractors in your area, you should:

  • check your local telephone directory
  • ask friends or neighbors for recommendations;
  • check newspaper, TV and radio ads;
  • contact stores that sell natural gas equipment

HVAC Contractor is a Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning expert who can help you with many home comfort issues, including:

  • problems with heating ducts or radiators;
  • balancing of a warm air system;
  • replacement of an exhaust vent;
  • installation of a metal chimney liner in a masonry chimney;
  • problems with central air conditioning connected to your forced-air furnace;
  • installation of a natural gas appliance; and
  • corrective measures if you need to improve air supply or ventilation

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9. I have turned my thermostat down to the bottom, why am I still using gas?

With the majority of manual type thermostats the lowest setting possible is a temperature of 55-60 degrees Fahrenheit. During the summer months the windows are left open and the temperature in the home drops below this temperature causing the furnace to come on. During the summer months to insure this doesn’t happen turn the electrical switch off that controls the furnace, this way the furnace cannot operate.


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10. Why are you changing my meter?

Did you get a call about a meter exchange?

We work hard to make sure that your gas meter operates as accurately as possible. Our meter exchange program means that every few years, under Industry Canada guidelines, we exchange and test a range of meters for their continued accuracy.

Because this work requires us to shut off your gas and enter your home or business to relight your appliances, our service department will try to contact you first- usually by phone or letter- to arrange a convenient time for one of our service technicians to make the exchange.

How long does it take?

It will take our Technicians about 30 – 45 minutes start to finish.

What are you going to do?

First, our technician will take the last reading on the meter. Then, he will shut off the gas, remove the meter, install the new meter, take a reading on the new meter and turn the gas back on. When that’s all finished, he’ll need to come inside and relight your gas appliances.

Does it cost me anything?

There is no cost to the customer for this service.

How can I be sure it is really a Pacific Northern Gas employee at my door?

All of our technicians can provide identification that they are employees of Pacific Northern Gas. They will be driving a clearly marked Pacific Northern Gas vehicle and will produce identification upon request.

Questions?

If you have any questions on the meter exchange program please do not hesitate to contact our Customer Care Center at 1 800 667-2297 between the hours of 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM Pacific Time, Monday through Friday excluding holidays.


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11. Why does my account number change when I move?

Your account number is comprised of two components. The first 9 numbers starting with 00 identify you, the customer. The following 7 numbers identify the Premise or Business.

When you move the first 9 numbers will remain constant, but the next 7 will change to identify your new home or business.

If you are paying your bill through Telephone or Internet banking you will need to make this change to insure your payments are directed to the new account.


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