Information about estimated gas bills

Wednesday 04 January 2017

Background

Gas retailers, such as ActewAGL Retail, sell the gas you use at your home or business, and manage your gas account. 

ActewAGL Distribution delivers the gas, and is responsible for reading gas meters and providing the meter information to your retailer so that they can generate your quarterly gas bill.

Why do I sometimes receive an estimated gas bill?

Under industry guidelines, gas bills are based on estimated consumption in cases where actual meter readings are not available in the system when your quarterly invoice is generated. There are valid reasons for this occurring; for example, when a meter reader cannot gain access to a meter or they cannot attend on a particular day due to hazardous weather.

Why are some estimated bills higher than ‘normal’?

Estimated bills are generally based on your average daily use (consumption) for the same period last year. However, in some cases there may not be any billing history or customers may have varied their gas usage; for example, when they move house or switch between gas and electricity. This can lead to higher or lower estimated consumption.

For a new connection the estimated bill is based on how the customer has indicated they will be using gas, such as heating, cooking and hot water.

Why do some people receive two bills?

This can happen when a gas retailer receives information about an actual meter reading shortly after an estimated bill has been sent, in which case a second bill is automatically generated with the updated due amount.

If you have paid a bill based on estimated consumption, your account will be adjusted as soon as a meter reading showing actual consumption is available to your gas retailer.

What caused the recent increase in estimated bills being sent by ActewAGL?

We have resolved the key issues that caused an increase in the number of estimated gas bills being sent to customers last year.

In May 2016, ActewAGL Distribution along with other distribution companies in NSW transitioned to a new system to manage gas meter data. This was in response to changes requested by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO). This involved amending processes and technology around meter reading, including a more stringent timeframe for uploading meter data into the system.

Why did this take a few months to fix?

This was a complex issue with multiple processes and stakeholders involved including meter readers, the network distributor, the network operator and retailers. ActewAGL Distribution worked as quickly as possible with all stakeholders to make the necessary changes.

What if my estimate was too high and I have paid too much?

If you have paid a bill based on estimated consumption, your account will be adjusted as soon as a meter reading showing actual consumption is available to your gas retailer.

I’m concerned about my gas bills, what should I do?

We encourage customers to call our Assist team on 13 18 86 and we will work through their individual circumstances.