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Page Hometown » Ohio
Posted: 9/30/2021 9:45:50 PM EDT
Anyone work for Columbia gas in Ohio?

Not happy with them and their gas meter policy.
I am planning a home standby generator install at my home. House built in 1996 with a standard 250 meter on it.
Called Columbia gas and asked about a meter swap for a larger gas meter (425)and they said "no problem, It's $600.

They own the meter, I can't change it or put one on but $600 is nuts for me to pay for their meter so I can use more gas.
I never had any issues with other utilities upgrading equipment but my 25 year old meter is dated. I asked when my meter was certified and when the calibration date expires and she had no clue.

I could actually buy a new meter for way less but they own it so no go.
Has Columbia gas always had no customer service? It did take three calls to over an hour on hold to get a real person in an office in PA.


Link Posted: 9/30/2021 9:55:10 PM EDT
[#1]
Maybe a dumb question, but have you talked to PUCO about your options? You would think you have more than one.
Link Posted: 9/30/2021 10:22:16 PM EDT
[#2]
PUCO has been of zero help , I called and they said nothing they can help with.
Basically I can pick another gas supplier but it still passes thru Columbia Gas delivery equipment and subject to their self made terms and conditions / $600 or whatever they decide.



Link Posted: 10/4/2021 1:37:58 PM EDT
[#3]
Is your meter located inside or outside?

Is your meter a smart meter or no?

Is your meter corroded or leaking any?
Link Posted: 10/5/2021 12:17:13 AM EDT
[#4]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By FFMedic:
Is your meter located inside or outside?

Is your meter a smart meter or no?

Is your meter corroded or leaking any?
View Quote



Meter is outside.

Meter looks like the original meter installed on the house in 1996, some rust so I doubt its a smart meter.

Meter looks old and faded / direct sun.


Meters are supposed to have a calibration date and certification expiration date which I asked Columbia gas about and the woman said " I have never heard of that " and even if it was past the certification date they would only put the same gas meter back on my house. I am not kidding about zero customer support but she is in another state.


Link Posted: 10/5/2021 8:45:39 AM EDT
[#5]
Unfortunately Columbia gas is my only gas company option available.
I just found out Dominion is not available at my address / location. Bummer because they would have provided a larger meter at no cost.



Link Posted: 10/5/2021 7:36:06 PM EDT
[#6]
Under the premise of easier to ask forgiveness than ask for permission...
What if you installed your generator and this meter does not keep up?  Would CG be obligated to supply proper equipment to ensure operation of household?  I do not have NG so I have no idea...
Link Posted: 10/6/2021 12:34:08 AM EDT
[#7]
I am surprised you would need a larger gas meter for a home standby generator.  

Maybe I have grossly underestimated the size of your generator and/or home and/or electrical load?
Link Posted: 10/6/2021 3:59:46 AM EDT
[#8]
Link Posted: 10/6/2021 2:12:58 PM EDT
[#9]
10 KW will not run the entire house with central AC.....based on LRA of the compressor and fan.

Looking at a commercial liquid cooled 22 KW generator / 1800 RPM.
Using a 10 KW generator would work for everything except central AC.


If I am dropping the coin I want the entire house to be able to run without issue and 22KW puts me there.
I have no issue dropping money on commercial equipment like the generator & transfer switch / service disconnect.


Its a matter of principal when Columbia gas owns the meter I cant touch but wants to charge me whatever number they want to so I can use more gas.
I really thought when I called a meter swap would fall under customer service , especially when its 2 1/2 decades old.
Link Posted: 10/6/2021 2:14:17 PM EDT
[#10]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By cotter6015:
Under the premise of easier to ask forgiveness than ask for permission...
What if you installed your generator and this meter does not keep up?  Would CG be obligated to supply proper equipment to ensure operation of household?  I do not have NG so I have no idea...
View Quote



They would laugh and still charge me whatever amount they desire / not their problem.
Link Posted: 10/6/2021 2:36:55 PM EDT
[#11]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By JKH62:
10 KW will not run the entire house with central AC.....based on LRA of the compressor and fan.

Looking at a commercial liquid cooled 22 KW generator / 1800 RPM.
Using a 10 KW generator would work for everything except central AC.


If I am dropping the coin I want the entire house to be able to run without issue and 22KW puts me there.
I have no issue dropping money on commercial equipment like the generator & transfer switch / service disconnect.


Its a matter of principal when Columbia gas owns the meter I cant touch but wants to charge me whatever number they want to so I can use more gas.
I really thought when I called a meter swap would fall under customer service , especially when its 2 1/2 decades old.
View Quote
I'm with you on this one. It just doesn't seem right.

Although it seems like they have you by the short ones, I'd still try to file a complaint.

Link Posted: 10/6/2021 3:13:36 PM EDT
[#12]
Still looking at options but paying them $600 is not one of them.




Biggest load/s is central AC and sump pump.

Start up wattage for AC is 17,622.00 watts for 1-3 seconds.

(LRA X220V)
Sump pump is 1152.00 watts so those two items pull 18,774.00 watts / spike on start up.

Link Posted: 10/6/2021 4:03:18 PM EDT
[#13]
I sent you a message.
Link Posted: 10/8/2021 5:55:56 AM EDT
[#14]
Well, that’s some BS on their part.

Second, you really don’t need AC on a backup… but it would be nice and it’s your house…

Third, columbia refuses to admit there is gas on my street or property. This is odd, since there’s a big 4ft tall marker across the street from my house. My neighbor has a meter in his back yard. My other neighbor claims to have personally witnesses the gas line being installed back in ~1976 or so. Which runs through my back yard… the guy from USIC said he legally cannot mark the line as it’s out of his power, but showed me where it runs anyway with his magic wand metal detector thing. Right where the neighbors said it is.

They’re a bunch of dicks.
Link Posted: 10/8/2021 10:39:39 AM EDT
[#15]
No reply from anyone else internal to Columbia gas so I filled out a complaint form on the PUCO site.
Its hard to explain that I really do not mind dropping 15 grand on MY generator and equipment but there is no way I am paying $600 more to Columbia Gas for their equipment so I can use more of their product.


Having a nice standby by system was always on my to-do list but I underestimated how petty Columbia Gas really is.
Columbia Gas might have just saved me 15 grand.........
Link Posted: 10/8/2021 2:32:05 PM EDT
[#16]
They are notoriously slow to respond.
Link Posted: 10/9/2021 1:04:20 AM EDT
[Last Edit: RareBear] [#17]
One solution is a fuel storage tank filled during off-season, if bought new likely quite a bit more expensive than a new larger meter.

A used or no longer used tank might be found cheaper.

Another advantage would be having a fuel supply in event of pipe break upstream from you or during a weather event when the gas company cannot keep up with demand and pipe pressure gets low.
Link Posted: 12/2/2021 3:23:13 PM EDT
[#18]
Brace yourself for another possible expense. Looks like you have a standard residential 5/8” plastic service line. Depending on your projected load and length of service, you may need to upgrade to an 1 1/8” service. Guaranteed they will charge for that too.

This is based on ten years spent working for their Indiana sister company.
Link Posted: 12/4/2021 2:55:56 AM EDT
[Last Edit: gunsho11b] [#19]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By JKH62:
Unfortunately Columbia gas is my only gas company option available.
I just found out Dominion is not available at my address / location. Bummer because they would have provided a larger meter at no cost.



View Quote



With Dominion it all depends on who they send out to your house. When I had my Home Standby Generator installed a year ago (16KW), there was a small leak in the supply line on my side of the meter. Called Dominion and they pinpointed the leak but then shut off the gas and pinned my meter. Called the plumber that installed the line, he came out the next day and fixed the section of pipe. Called Dominion back and they sent this short fat lady to my house and she said that the line failed the pressure test. I told her that's impossible, and if she could at least turn the gas back onto my house and use her gas sniffer device to see if the fixed section is still leaking. After arguing with her for a few minutes, the dumb bitch finally agreed and did not detect any leaks. But because she said I failed the pressure test she said I must have another leak somewhere in my house and said that I need to have that inspected! She then put the pin lock back on my meter WTF!!!!! So now not only did I not have a Generator that could work but I also did not have Gas to my house! I then asked her if should could turn the gas back on to at least use her detector to try to pinpoint any other leaks and her response was that she does not do that and I would have to get my lines inspected by a plumber. So now I'm on day 3 and I call the plumber back that morning and we are both saying WTF. He comes out right away. I explain to him the situation and he says call Dominon and tell them the line has been fixed. He said he was going to wait at my home all day if he had to until Dominion arrived which fortunately was only an hour later. This time a tall older male shows up and does the same pressure test and I pass. Finally someone who knows what the fuck they are doing! The guy was even nice enough to upgrade my meter on sight. He in so many words told me that the lady that checked my line was dumb as a box of rocks.
Link Posted: 12/6/2021 9:10:13 AM EDT
[#20]
I have about scrapped my NG powered standby generator project in large part from dealing with Columbia gas and the potential money pit and zero customer support from them trying to do a simple project.


Looking at diesel standby options currently and adding up cost / features.


Link Posted: 12/7/2021 10:48:13 AM EDT
[#21]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By RareBear:
One solution is a fuel storage tank filled during off-season, if bought new likely quite a bit more expensive than a new larger meter.

A used or no longer used tank might be found cheaper.

Another advantage would be having a fuel supply in event of pipe break upstream from you or during a weather event when the gas company cannot keep up with demand and pipe pressure gets low.
View Quote

A 4' Diameter ASME Vessel weighs about 12,500#. Where you going to get the $$$ for a non junk Compressor and the routine maintenance. $600 is nothing compared to this. When Karen finds out you are compressing NG to 4500 PSIG, she will flip the fuck out.
Link Posted: 12/7/2021 10:51:24 AM EDT
[#22]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By JKH62:
I have about scrapped my NG powered standby generator project in large part from dealing with Columbia gas and the potential money pit and zero customer support from them trying to do a simple project.


Looking at diesel standby options currently and adding up cost / features.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jHvNqQRRoI
View Quote

Columbia or any LDC has zero fucks to give. They just transport the NG. They are like UPS. ZFG on where you bought what they are delivering. They get paid for the transportation.
Link Posted: 12/7/2021 2:47:23 PM EDT
[#23]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By wienerman1961:

Columbia or any LDC has zero fucks to give. They just transport the NG. They are like UPS. ZFG on where you bought what they are delivering. They get paid for the transportation.
View Quote



Agreed but Columbia does claim ownership of the meter on my house that is about 3 decades old and will not update it or put one on to meet my demand *



*Unless I pay whatever cost they come up with , not happening.


I can get a larger meter for $400 (my cost) but I cant touch their equipment.
Link Posted: 12/7/2021 5:57:49 PM EDT
[#24]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By JKH62:



Agreed but Columbia does claim ownership of the meter on my house that is about 3 decades old and will not update it or put one on to meet my demand *



*Unless I pay whatever cost they come up with , not happening.


I can get a larger meter for $400 (my cost) but I cant touch their equipment.
View Quote

True, M&R (Metering & Regulating) is their equipment. The Service may also be theirs. Many years ago the Service was the customers responsibility. Now, due to rate cases, I think the Service line etc is theirs to the outlet of the Meter Bar.
Link Posted: 12/8/2021 9:56:19 AM EDT
[#25]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By wienerman1961:

True, M&R (Metering & Regulating) is their equipment. The Service may also be theirs. Many years ago the Service was the customers responsibility. Now, due to rate cases, I think the Service line etc is theirs to the outlet of the Meter Bar.
View Quote


Yes, the service is owned up to the outlet of the meter/regulator.
Page Hometown » Ohio
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