There is competition in the domestic gas market in the Greater Belfast and Larne.
This means domestic customers in these areas can shop around for their best price.
The Consumer Council has produced a leaflet explaining how to switch your natural gas supplier and an online gas price and service comparison tool is available from here.
Business customers in Belfast or Larne have the choice of three natural gas suppliers.
There is only one natural gas supplier to domestic and businesses customers in Antrim, Armagh, Banbridge, Craigavon, Newry, Ballymena, Ballymoney, Coleraine, Limavady and Derry.
All gas suppliers in Northern Ireland must keep a Customer Care Register with the details and special needs of customers who are of pensionable age, disabled (by virtue of being blind, partially sighted, deaf or hearing impaired) or chronically sick. Suppliers can provide free assistance and services to customers who register their details with them. These services include bills in different formats such as large print or Braille and password schemes to help identify representatives from a service provider. A list of the service provided by all suppliers is available here.
How you are protected
- The gas industry is regulated by the Utility Regulator, which means that the supply companies have to work to rules set out in their licence.
- Licensed companies are also required to set standards of performance e.g. how they respond to complaints and enquiries, offer customers connection to the gas network, respond to gas incidents and provide energy efficiency advice. They must also make clear their social obligations e.g. the services provided for pensioners, sick or disabled people.
- The Consumer Council is an independent body, which represents and protects the interests of energy consumers and has the legal power to investigate complaints on your behalf.
How to complain
- For concerns about safety or if you suspect a gas leak, contact the
- Northern Ireland Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 002001. (Lines are open 24 hours);
- Complaints about the supply of gas should be raised directly with the supplier;
- If your supplier is unable to resolve the matter, you should contact The Consumer Council on 0800 121 6022 or by email: [email protected]. They can provide you with advice and investigate your complaint if appropriate;
- The Gas Safe Register can investigate complaints about the safety of work undertaken by both registered installers and non-registered installers.
- Gas appliances should be serviced annually by a Gas Safe registered engineer. Contact Gas Safe Register for a list of qualified gas engineers in your area.