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How to Shop for Natural Gas in Ohio

Natural gas choice lets consumers compare different plans, rates, and providers to find the right one for them. Direct Energy prides itself on equipping consumers with the tips and tools they need to find the perfect natural gas plan.

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Choose your own adventure by selecting from the categories below or keep scrolling to get the full rundown on how to shop for natural gas.

How Do I Sign Up for Natural Gas?

You can sign up for natural gas in just a few steps:


Create an account with your utility

If you haven't already, you'll need to create an account with your local utility. Unless you're moving, you should already have an account.


Check whether you're under contract

Check whether you are under contract with your current provider. If you are, make sure you won't be charged an early termination fee if you switch providers before your contract ends.


Have your utility bill on hand

Have a recent utility bill on hand, as you'll need your account number to enroll in a new plan with a competitive provider. If you're moving and haven't received a bill yet, you can contact your utility for your account number.


Shop for your perfect plan

Shop for the natural gas plan that fits your needs. After you sign up, your new provider will contact your local utility to complete the process.

When will my gas be turned on?

The time it takes to turn on your natural gas varies based on when your local utility can connect your home. Be sure to leave yourself enough time to shop and sign up with your new provider, and check your utility's timeline to make sure you can get your gas turned on when you need it.

Are there fees associated with signing up?

Some utilities may charge a switching fee when you sign up with a new provider. Make sure to check with your local utility for more information.

Things To Consider When Shopping For a Natural Gas Plan


Natural gas rates will usually be listed as cost per THERM, CCF or MCF. These are the units used to measure natural gas usage.

Total Costs

To determine the best plan for your budget, you'll want to consider what your total costs will be each month. These include your natural gas charges (rate multiplied by usage) and operational fees associated with providing gas to your home. Even if one plan has a lower rate than another, your total monthly cost could end up being higher, depending on the plan.

Plan Benefits

What extra benefits do the available plans provide? Any supplier can provide you with gas; how do the plans your considering add value to your lifestyle?

Term Length

Consider what term length would fit best for your situation. Are you renting for a short period of time? Would you prefer to keep your same rate for a while? Will this term length end before peak season when prices are higher?

Ready to Shop?

Now that you're a savvier energy consumer, are you ready to find your perfect plan? Enter your zip code to check out our offers for your area.

Glossary of Terms

Here are a few terms you'll see when shopping for a natural gas plan:

Natural Gas Deregulation

In deregulated areas, customers are no longer required to sign up with their utility for natural gas. Instead, they can shop offerings from available competitive natural gas providers to find the best one for their household.

Natural Gas Deregulation


Your local utility is responsible for distributing, connecting and disconnecting natural gas to your home and reading and maintaining your home's gas meter. The utility also maintains the pipe lines and other equipment used to carry natural gas. In some deregulated areas, your utility may compete on the gas market, offering its own gas rates to customers.

Natural Gas Utility

Natural Gas Provider

Retail or competitive providers compete to provide natural gas to customers. In areas with deregulated natural gas, customers can shop and compare natural gas plans from various competitive providers, like Direct Energy.

Natural Gas Provider

Units of consumption

There are a few different units used to measure your natural gas consumption. Depending on where you live and which unit of measurement your utility uses, you'll likely see one of the following on your gas bill:

  • MCF: A unit equivalent to one thousand cubic feet of natural gas.
  • CCF: A unit equivalent to one hundred cubic feet of natural gas.
  • THERM: A unit equivalent to 100,000 British Thermal Units (BTUs). A BTU is the amount of heat required to increase the temperature of one pound of water by one degree Fahrenheit.

Units of Consumption

Rate per unit

The rate per unit is the price you pay for each unit of natural gas you use (usually measured in MCFs, CCFs or Therms). This price is set by your retail natural gas provider.

Rate per unit

Term Length

The term length is the duration, usually in months, of your contract for a natural gas plan.

Term Length

Fixed-Rate Plan

With a fixed-rate plan, you'll be able to lock in an energy rate per kWh for a term length of your choosing. Fixed-rate plans protect you from market price fluctuations, but you will typically need to sign a contract and your rate may be higher than the market rate during seasons with low energy demand.

fixed-rate plan

Gas Meter

Your gas meter is used to measure how much gas you have used each billing cycle. Your local utility reads and maintains your electric meter. If you purchase your natural gas from a competitive provider, your utility passes this usage information to them.

gas meter
View our energy glossary for more commonly-used terms.

What is the average natural gas bill?

Your natural gas bill can vary based on several factors, so it can be difficult to determine an average bill amount. The average natural gas bill can depend on the following factors:

Home Size

Smaller homes typically use less natural gas than larger homes, mainly because your furnace is heating a smaller space.

Weather & Climate

Some regions typically experience a mild climate and pleasant seasonal temperatures, taking some of the workload - and gas usage - off a home's heating system. Residents of other areas of the country may need to use their heating systems more to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature.

Usage Habits

If you engage in gas-saving habits such as reducing gas stove, oven or furnace use, you could have a lower bill than if you were less conscious of your usage.

Appliance Efficiency

The efficiency and regular maintenance of natural gas appliances like your heating system, stove, oven, water heater and dryer can affect how much gas these appliances use. Insulation can help your heating system use less electricity by keeping the treated air inside your home and the hot or cold air out.

Home Gas Efficiency

Factors like windows and insulation can affect how your home uses natural gas. Well- sealed windows and good insulation can help your heating system use less natural gas by keeping the warm air inside your home and the cold air out.

Natural Gas Rate

Obviously, the price you pay per unit of gas usage will also affect your bill.

Read more about what can affect your gas bill.

Pricing, Billing & Fees

How does billing work?

You will typically receive your natural gas bill every 28-32 days, depending on when your local utility reads your gas meter. Your bill includes the usage charge for the amount of gas used, plus operational costs associated with providing natural gas to your home. These operational costs may come from your utility and your retail natural gas supplier. You will usually receive a bill directly from your local utility. If you are enrolled with a natural gas provider separate from your utility (like Direct Energy), your provider will appear as a line item on the bill.

Payment Options

You will usually pay your natural gas bill through your local utility even if you have opted to receive your gas from a competitive supplier, so contact your utility for information on your payment options:

How much will my natural gas bill be?

Your natural gas bill amount will vary based primarily on your usage. There are two major parts to your bill: the charges for the gas you use in your home and your utility or delivery charges, which cover the operational costs of delivering gas to your home. You can calculate your bill by adding up these costs.

Learn more about how to calculate your gas bill.

Understanding Prices and Plan Documents

Natural gas regulators in your state may require gas suppliers to create and display documents detailing information for each of their gas plans. These documents provide vital insights like the rate, term length, fees and other stipulations.

Learn more about plan documents

Pick Your Perfect Plan!

We have a variety of natural gas plans to help meet the needs of your home and family. Our fixed-rate plans allow you to lock in a natural gas rate for a term length of your choosing and get protection from market price fluctuations.

Moving Tips

Are you moving to a new home?

Check out our Moving Hub for moving checklists, buying and renting guides, moving out of state and other tips on how you can have a stress-free move.

Moving Tips

Renewing With Direct Energy

Renewing Your Plan

What About Renewing?

We'll notify you at least 30 days before your contract expires and give you the opportunity to explore your new plan options. If you don't choose a new Direct Energy plan or switch providers before your contract expires, we'll put you on another plan with us. Don't worry – you'll be notified beforehand of the plan rate and details.

Current Customers

Current Customers

If you're a current Direct Energy customer looking to renew with us, you can view renewal plans by logging into your Online Account Manager or contacting us.

If you're moving, you can also transfer your service with us to your new address by contacting us.

Natural Gas Rates for Ohio

We have a variety of natural gas rates and plans so you can find the best one for your home.

Select Your Utility To View

Plan Name Region Plan Term Rate
State Site Live Brighter 6 Columbia Gas 6 months 0.499 dollars/CCF
Live Brighter™ 12 Columbia Gas 12 months 0.599 dollars/CCF
Live Brighter™ 18 Columbia Gas 18 months 0.599 dollars/CCF
Plan Name Region Plan Term Rate
Live Brighter 17 Duke Energy Gas 17 months 0.439 dollars/CCF
Live Brighter™ 12 Duke Energy Gas 12 months 0.489 dollars/CCF
Live Brighter™ 18 Duke Energy Gas 18 months 0.489 dollars/CCF
Plan Name Region Plan Term Rate
Live Brighter 17 Dominion Energy Ohio 17 months 4.09 dollars/MCF
Live Brighter™ 12 Dominion Energy Ohio 12 months 4.59 dollars/MCF
Live Brighter™ 18 Dominion Energy Ohio 18 months 4.69 dollars/MCF
Plan Name Region Plan Term Rate
Live Brighter 17 Vectren 17 months 0.489 dollars/CCF
Live Brighter™ 12 Vectren 12 months 0.549 dollars/CCF
Live Brighter™ 18 Vectren 18 months 0.539 dollars/CCF

Have a question about a plan or need help placing an order?

Call us: 1-855-461-1926

Hours: 7:00am-7:00pm CT Monday-Friday, 7:00am-4:00pm Saturday

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