Regardless of who you buy your natural gas from in Ontario, your local gas utility is responsible for reading your meter. These readings are usually scheduled for every other month or so, with billings in between being based upon projections of expected consumption. Your gas bill should indicate whether you were billed according to estimates or actual meter readings.
It’s advisable to learn how to read your meter, as you will be able to determine whether or not you’re being accurately billed. If an error is made, you can notify your gas distributor a few days before the next bill is due to be generated, and have it adjusted accordingly.
Locate Your Meter
Gas meters are typically located outside your home, off to the side where a meter reader can easily access it. However, this location can very. If you are unable to find it, contact your distributor for assistance.
Reading Digital Gas Meters
Many gas meters display gas consumption in a digital format, using either an electronic display similar to a digital clock’s, or a mechanical display like the one below.
Reading a meter like this is self-explanatory. In this case, the reading would be 14.396 cubic metres.
Reading Dial Gas Meters
Gas meters that use dials (sometimes referred to as imperial style) can be a little more daunting for the uninitiated. But if you can read an analog clock, then you can read a dial meter. This is an example of one:
The meter pictured is a little unusual in that all the dials don’t turn clockwise. The arrows indicate which direction they turn. But the idea is still the same as looking at the hour hand on a clock face: if the hand is pointing directly at a number or has moved past it, then that is the number to note. If the hand is ALMOST to that number, but not quite, then the previous number is what the dial is indicating.
In the case of the meter dials pictured above, the reading would be 7,205. Don’t worry about the numbers over the dials. Your gas utility will know how to interpret the reading properly.
If you’d like to learn more about reading this style of gas meter (and even take a quiz to test your knowledge), check out our blog post about reading old-style dial meters. The blog post goes into more technical detail, and even teaches you how to calculate your usage since the last reading.