Have you received your most recent natural gas bill and noticed it is much higher than usual?
Natural gas prices in the Western United States have more than doubled over the last month, in part because of a cold snap across the nation in recent weeks.
As a result, customers can expect to see higher gas bills in the coming weeks.
While SoCalGas doesn't set these prices (they’re set by regional and national markets), nor does SoCalGas profit from rising prices, they wanted their customers to know that they understand that these increased costs may be a hardship for some.
SoCalGas offers many accessible tools to help you cut down on energy usage and help lower your bills amidst the rising costs. SoCalGas encourage customers to sign up for weekly Bill Tracker Alerts to monitor gas consumption, take steps to reduce usage, and avoid bill surprises. Alerts can be sent through email or text and include a bill-to-date and projected next bill amount to help you manage your energy bills as easily as possible.
Eligible customers may also sign up for a Level Pay Plan (LPP), which averages their annual natural gas use and costs over 12 months.
For more information on natural gas prices and predictions, visit https://www.eia.gov/naturalgas/weekly/.
Customers can expect to see changes in their natural gas bills this winter due to the rise in natural gas prices. If your residential peak winter bill was around $65 last winter, you can expect to see bills closer to $160 this year. Similarly, if it was around $130 last winter, customers can expect to see bills around $315 this year. These increases are primarily due to increases in the price of gas and to a much lesser extent increased transportation rates. The rates for the transportation of natural gas are set by the California Public Utilities Commission, which reviews these rates yearly.
SoCalGas has been and will continue to be diligent in informing customers about winter gas prices to keep them informed and help empower them with important information to assist them through this tough time.
Here are some useful tips provided by SoCalGas to help customers reduce natural gas usage, keeping in mind that not every one of these tips will work for everyone:
- Lowering your thermostat three to five degrees – if health permits – can save up to 10 percent on heating costs.
- Installing proper caulking and weather-stripping can save roughly 10 to 15 percent on heating and cooling bills.
- Washing clothes in cold water saves up to 10 percent on water heating costs.
- Consider turning down the temperature on your water heater.
- Limit the use of non-essential natural gas appliances such as spas, pool heaters, and fireplaces.
Their Ways to Save Energy-Saving Tool can provide you with a customized analysis of your energy usage that can help you track your energy efficiency progress and help lower bills. This helpful tool won the “Global Power and Energy Elites 2022 Award” for its innovative use of data and analysis.
For more information on bills and how to lower your costs, please visit socalgas.com/ManageHigherBills.