Supplier FAQs | WNY | National Fuel

Supplier Frequently Asked Questions

Supplier Frequently Asked Questions

Who do I call if I have no gas or if I smell gas?

For any gas emergency, you should always call National Fuel at 1-800-444-3130.

What if I fail to honor my agreement with the supplier?

You are signing a contractual agreement, and you must honor the terms. Be sure to read the entire contract carefully to understand your rights to change suppliers or cancel under reasonable circumstances. Also, be aware of any cancellation fees that might apply. Suppliers can terminate the agreement for non-payment and stop supplying gas to you. In this event, National Fuel will become your gas supplier. You would then be subject to normal National Fuel payment requirements. If you have any questions, ask for answers in writing before you sign a contract with a supplier.

What if I have a dispute with a supplier?

First, contact the supplier and try to find a solution. If the supplier fails to make a good-faith attempt to negotiate or resolve your complaints, National Fuel has the right to terminate the supplier’s participation in the supplier choice program. National Fuel will not disconnect or interrupt the delivery of gas to you as a result of a dispute between you and the supplier. You can switch back to National Fuel at any time.

Is the quality of gas the same with another supplier?

Yes. All suppliers are required to meet our standards for quality and heating value to participate.

How can suppliers have different prices?

Suppliers are not subject to the same regulations as the utility. National Fuel always purchases gas at the best possible price while ensuring reliable supplies. We then sell the gas to our customers without markup or profit and, therefore, cannot offer a lower rate.

If I change suppliers, when will this change become effective? What happens next?

National Fuel will mail you a letter confirming your switch to the gas supplier with an approximate effective date and the name of the supplier. Please review the confirmation letter carefully:

  • If the information is correct, you do not need to do anything.
  • If the information is NOT correct, please contact National Fuel within 10 days of the date the confirmation letter was issued.

How long would I have to settle National Fuel’s bill if I choose an alternate supplier?

If you select a gas supplier other than National Fuel and are unable to pay your final bill from National Fuel, please call us to arrange a payment plan.

Who will get my energy assistance funds if I choose an alternate supplier?

Your energy assistance payments will continue to go directly to National Fuel.

Can I use National Fuel’s direct payment plan if I choose an alternate supplier?

This depends on how your supplier bills you. If National Fuel issues the entire bill, you can remain on the direct payment plan.

If the supplier bills for the gas costs, National Fuel will continue to offer the direct payment plan for our portion of your bill. Check with your supplier before you sign a contract to see if they offer an automatic payment service.

Could I still use National Fuel’s budget payment plan as a supplier choice customer?

That depends on which billing option the supplier selects for your account:

  • Utility consolidated bill—If enrolled in National Fuel’s budget plan at the time of enrollment, the delivery portion of the bill will remain on the budget plan. If you would like the commodity portion of your bill to also remain on the budget plan, you must notify your supplier that you would like it to be included.
  • Dual billing—If enrolled in National Fuel’s budget plan at the time of enrollment, the delivery portion of the bill will remain on the budget plan. Commodity charges will be billed by the supplier and will not be under National Fuel’s budget plan.
  • Single retailer bill —You must check with your supplier to see if they offer a budget payment plan. National Fuel’s budget plan is terminated at the time you become active under the single retailer group option.

Who would I pay as a supplier choice customer?

That depends on which billing option the supplier selects for your account:

  • Utility consolidated bill—National Fuel continues to send you one bill with the National Fuel delivery charges and the supplier commodity charges. Payment is made to National Fuel.
  • Dual billing—National Fuel will bill you for your delivery charges and your supplier will bill you for your commodity charges. Payments are made to both National Fuel and your supplier.
  • Single retailer bill —Your supplier will bill you for National Fuel delivery charges and their commodity charges. Payment is made to the supplier. Please note that you will receive a final bill from National Fuel (including any budget billing balance) when your account is transferred to the supplier.

How would supplier choice affect my bill? Could it save me money?

There are three main costs that make up your natural gas bill:

  1. The cost of natural gas at the wellhead—Natural gas is purchased at the wellhead at a price that is determined by the marketplace. Utilities must pass the cost directly to customers without markup or profit. The rate National Fuel charges for natural gas is set by the New York State Public Service Commission, based on a formula mandated by law. Rates charged by gas suppliers are not regulated, so they can set their prices differently. This is the portion of the bill that can be impacted by your choice of gas supplier and could affect your total cost.
  2. The cost of transporting that gas to the region through interstate pipelines.
  3. The cost of delivering the gas to your home, including the cost of our pipeline, labor, materials and taxes.

National Fuel provides a historical bill comparison that customers may use to compare rates and bill amounts from their suppliers to those that would have been charged by National Fuel.

If I choose a new supplier, what services will National Fuel provide me?

National Fuel will still be your local gas utility. We will read your meter, respond to gas emergencies and maintain company-owned pipelines. We remain fully committed to providing you with the best possible service, whether you purchase your gas from National Fuel or another supplier.

What if I want National Fuel to continue as my supplier?

Participation in supplier choice is voluntary. If you do not wish to choose an alternate supplier, National Fuel will continue to purchase and deliver gas for you. You do not have to notify anyone of your decision.

Will another gas supplier be as reliable as National Fuel?

To be authorized to participate, the suppliers must agree to have sufficient gas supplies for their market and maintain adequate supply in storage. Suppliers are subject to penalties if their supplies are not delivered. In the event your supplier fails to provide your gas, National Fuel will act as the backup supplier.

What is supplier choice?

Customers can choose to have their gas supplied by a supplier, or marketer, rather than by National Fuel. Your supplier will be responsible for providing the gas that National Fuel will deliver. The supplier will add the gas you have purchased to the National Fuel system to be delivered to your household. Customers who choose a supplier or marketer will then pay that supplier for the gas provided. We will still deliver gas to your home and be responsible for service, and we will still receive payment for the delivery costs.

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