How do I get connected to natural gas?
Connecting to natural gas is easy and if the gas pipeline goes past your home for most people connecting is free!
Get an instant answer on whether you are within range by entering your address into our handy gas checker tool. If you’re within the 40-metre range for a free connection, access to your home isn’t complicated, and you want to install either gas hot water or central heating (or both!) you can go ahead and start a gas connection application here.
Answer a few questions, then our team will call you with a few more questions to complete your application and submit it for approval. Find out more about the connection process here.
How long will it take to get connected?
Once you’ve accepted the quote and terms you can expect a connection in around 20 working days. There are things that can impact this timeframe.
As part of your gas connection application, we’ll send you some terms and a formal quote for your gas connection (even if your connection is $0). You’ll need to accept the quote and terms (this can be done online) before your connection can progress. It is very common that applicants miss this step and don’t accept the quote and terms – we can’t progress your connection until this step has taken place, even if your connection is free.
Other factors that can delay a connection include high demand, bad weather, gas emergency work on the network Council consents if required, and you being accepted as a customer by the energy retailer you nominate.
Once your connection is complete with the gas meter installed, your gasfitter can install the exciting new gas appliances you have chosen.
Our customer team will talk to you about timeframes as part of your application and let you know for example if there is high demand in your area that may increase the time to connect.
Is natural gas in my street?
How much will it cost me to connect to natural gas?
More often than not, it’s free to connect. The majority of homes within 40 metres of our natural gas network can get a free connection if they are installing hot water or central heating.
You'll need to buy your appliances and have them installed by a gasfitter. Often your gasfitter can supply the appliances for you. Find out more about free connections.
Can my gas meter be installed anywhere on my house?We have certain rules to follow when installing gas pipes and meters. As part of the gas connection process we’ll assess your requested meter position to confirm if it meets requirements. We’ll talk you through the process if this is not the case.
You can contact our customer team to ask where the acceptable locations around your house are for a gas meter to be placed. As a general rule the location can be along the front of your house or no more than 3 metres down either side of your house - but the meter needs to be away from opening windows and sources of ignition, so do check with us.
Will my property be dug up?When your gas pipe is laid, the preferred option is to dig one hole, through which the pipe is then thrusted underground to another hole next to where your gas meter will be positioned.
However sometimes it’s more practical and easier to open a trench and lay the pipe.
Any property that is dug up will be restored. If we trench through concrete areas, we’ll install a temporary seal to the area and return within two weeks of the connection being completed to allow the ground to settle and then complete the final reinstatement.
Do I have to be on site when my gas connection is completed?Not generally. We don’t require anyone to be present unless there are access issues, for example locked gates, dogs and that type of thing.
I want to be on site when the connection is completed. Can this be arranged?We call you two weeks in advance of your connection date to confirm details and let you know the scheduled connection date.
Depending on the weather and any emergencies that may arise, we may be onsite a day either side of your scheduled connection date.
We do our best to meet the date we've set and to keep you informed if you’ve requested to be present when the connection is being completed.
What is an energy retailer?An energy retailer is the company who supplies and bills you for the natural gas you use each month.
As part of the connection process, we’ll send your application to your nominated energy retailer and they will contact you to open your gas account.
It's a competitive market and we recommend shopping around for special offers. You can request a list of local energy retailers to be emailed to you here.
What is a gasfitter and why do I need one?A gasfitter is a licensed and/or certified tradesperson who will install your gas appliances and associated gas pipework in and around your house. Any work to install or service gas appliances must be carried out by a licensed gasfitter and any new installations or alterations must be certified as compliant by them.
Leave gasfitting work to the experts - it's the law. You can request a list of local gasfitters to be emailed to you here.
Do you complete connections for LPG bottles?No we don’t deal with LPG - also referred to as bottled gas.
We own and maintain the underground natural gas pipeline. We connect Kiwi home and businesses to natural gas and may be able to offer you a free connection!
Natural gas is sometimes called mains, piped or reticulated gas. The pipelines run underground, so it's reliable 24/7 and won't run out.
Is it cheaper to connect to natural gas than LPG?
Even with daily fixed charges, natural gas can often be cheaper than LPG. If you use more than four large LPG bottles in a year, chances are you’ll be better off on natural gas.
As a general guide, if there are 3 or more of you at home, go with natural gas.
- If you’re looking at central heating, go with natural gas.
- Just interested in cooking with gas? LPG is the one for you.
Check out our hot water cost comparison tool, select a few variables and get the estimated upfront and running costs of natural gas compared to other energies including LPG.
Who should I talk to about relocating my gas meter?Any alterations to your meter box location must be requested via your energy retailer. Contact your energy retailer to discuss.
How much is natural gas hot water?
Let us point you to our hot water cost comparison tool. Use this handy tool to compare different options for heating the water at your place, like costs compared to an electric or LPG gas cylinder.
In just a few minutes you can compare estimated upfront (appliance and installation) and running costs (the energy you use month to month) within our natural gas network regions - Wellington, Taranaki, Manawatu and Hawke's Bay.
The tool allows you to select the amount of people you have at home and some other handy stuff to give you a great estimate. Better still, have the results emailed to you. It’s quick and easy.
One thing to remember is that it is very hard to predict exactly how much gas hot water will cost because everyone uses different amounts of hot water and showers at different temperatures. We say as a general rule if there are 3 or more of you at home, gas hot water will usually work out cheaper - especially if you are connecting other appliances on gas.
Our hot water cost comparison tool is on a separate website. Access it here (best viewed on desktop or iPad landscape).
What are my options for natural gas hot water?The majority of people choose natural gas continuous flow for endless hot water, high efficiency and practical space-saving reasons. Often referred to as 'instant', 'infinity' or 'califont' hot water systems, there are sizes to suit every household, with most easily able to handle multiple bathrooms from the single unit.
If you're after a cylinder, natural gas-powered gas cylinders have an advantage as many still work during a power cut.
Combi boilers can heat your hot water as well as your home, so this maybe worth looking at if you are building new, renovating, or if both your hot water and heating aren't up to scratch at home.
Find out more about better hot water with natural gas.
Why does everyone rave about continuous or infinity hot water?What’s not to love about having unlimited hot water on demand? Whatever you call it, continuous flow, instant, infinity or califont hot water powered by gas is extremely efficient and cost effective, delivering only as much hot water as you need. And because you’re only heating what you need, you pay for what you use, unlike a cylinder which you pay to keep the water hot all the time.
It's a major space saver also, with a small box mounted externally on your home, rather than a large cylinder taking up a whole cupboard.
Once you’ve covered the energy retailer's daily charge, you can expect to pay around one-third the kilowatt unit price of electricity or around .09c per unit for natural gas compared to around 0.25c per unit for electricity. Like endless hot water, the benefits go on and on and on….
Find out more about continuous hot water powered by natural gas.
Are heat pumps better than gas heating?Well the heat pump sales people may think so, but we’re not so sure!
We talk with a lot of people at homeshows who say their heat pumps just aren’t up to scratch – going into defrost mode when it’s too cold outside, taking ages to heat, expensive to run and not heating enough of the home.
Flued natural gas space heaters, like Rinnai’s compact Energysaver range, are comparable to heat pumps. They are reliable no matter the weather, fast, highly efficient and won’t add moisture to your home.
But for all-over cosiness you can't beat natural gas central heating. Central heating systems can cost around the same as two heat pumps, but wouldn't you rather heat every room in your home with toasty-warmth, instead of just one or two?
With heating options to suit every home and every budget, natural gas will keep you cosy indoors all winter long.
Find out more about better heating with natural gas.
Why is gas heating so good?Heating your home accounts for around one-third of your energy bill, so choosing the right heating is important. Today, you can choose from many options including gas fire, flued gas space heaters (a great heat pump equivalent), and central heating,
There's a natural gas heating solution for every home and every budget - and they are fast, highly efficient and generate a warm, healthy heat that won't add moisture to your home.
If you already use natural gas for hot water, the 'per kilowatt hour' or unit cost of heating your home with gas compared to electricity is a lot cheaper - around one-third the price of electricity.
Find out more about better heating with natural gas.
Why is cooking with gas so good?The best chefs prefer cooking with gas. People love it because the flame is instant and very precise, giving you total control.
If you love entertaining, find out more about getting creative in the kitchen with natural gas.
What are my options for gas cooking?Many people use a natural gas-powered hob, also known as a cooktop, with an electric oven underneath. These dual fuel ovens are really common. There are options around for gas-powered ovens as well as the cooktops.
Have a look online or talk to your local whiteware store.
Can I convert my LPG bbq to natural gas?It is possible to convert some BBQs to natural gas - so you won't run out of gas in the middle of sizzling your steaks to perfection. Conversions would need to be done by a gasfitter at your expense – and the BBQ would need to be certified as compliant by them. You'd also need the gasfitter to install a bayonet point in your backyard - this is like a plug for you to connect the BBQ into the mains gas.
You may want to consider buying a natural gas-powered BBQ from the get-go. That way you'll never have to do that mad dash down to the service station for a refill.
Find out more about outdoor entertaining with natural gas.
Is it safe to use natural gas in my home?Absolutely - natural gas has an outstanding safety record in New Zealand. It’s one of the safest energy sources you can use in and around your home. You're responsible for safety within your home, so make sure your gas appliances get their ‘warrant of fitness’ by having them serviced regularly by a gasfitter.
Find out more about gas safety at home.
What should I do if I hit a gas pipe?
What should I do if I smell gas in or around my home?
In the unlikely event you smell gas or suspect a gas leak inside your home do the following:
- Because they may ignite the gas, keep flames and cigarettes away from the area
- Do not operate any electrical switches
- Do not use your mobile phone in the area
- If possible, turn off the gas supply valve at the gas meter
- If it can be done safely, open doors and windows to ventilate the area
- If the smell persists, go outside to a safe place away from your home and call Powerco on 0800 111 848
If you smell gas outdoors, move away quickly and warn others to keep clear. Once clear of the smell, call Powerco on 0800 111 848 or emergency services on 111.
Who do I contact to find out where underground pipes are on my property?BeforeUDig can provide plans of where gas pipes, cables and other utility assets are around your property. Before digging, please call BeforeUDig on 0800 248 344 to get those plans and ensure you won't hit anything you're not supposed to!
Future Of Gas
How much does using natural gas contribute to New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions?Collectively Kiwis using natural gas to power their homes produce less than 1% of New Zealand’s total greenhouse gas emissions and these appliances consume around 3.6% of all the natural gas produced.
Is gas running out?There’s plenty of natural gas available to power Kiwi homes and businesses well into the future. With around 15 producing gas fields and 31 active exploration permits across New Zealand, we’re confident that the gas you use to power your heating, hot water and cooking appliances isn’t running out anytime soon.
With all this talk on decarbonisation is gas still a good choice for Kiwi homes?Absolutely. Natural gas is, by far, the cleanest burning fossil fuel, with CO2 emissions at less than half those of coal, for the same amount of energy delivered. And, exciting new technologies are helping us move to even cleaner gas energy alternatives, with lower, or possibly even no carbon emissions, as well as lessening the overall use of natural gas.
Natural gas is a fossil fuel – isn’t this bad for the environment?The purists will say yes. But when you look closely, the solution for NZ’s best energy mix isn’t so black and white.
Despite being a fossil fuel, natural gas has always been a relatively green source of energy when compared to coal and petroleum.
When used directly to power your appliances at home, natural gas produces less carbon emissions than peak time electricity.
What is peak time electricity?Peak time electricity is energy generated using natural gas or coal. New Zealand needs peak time electricity when demand is higher than the amount of available renewable energy. New Zealand produces around 85% renewable energy. Peak time electricity generated using natural gas emits about half the carbon dioxide as electricity generated by coal. Around 1/3 of natural gas produced is used to generate electricity.
We recommend using natural gas directly to power your hot water, heating or cooking. It makes more sense rather than using gas indirectly via peak time electricity. It’s like cutting out the middle man to save!
What happens to gas when New Zealand reaches 100% renewable energy?New Zealand is already a world leader with around 85% renewable energy - and we 100% support this.
Our renewable energy mainly comes from hydro, geothermal, solar, and wind. We can’t fill the lakes on demand, get the sun to shine on cloudy days or call up the perfect breeze to get the wind turbines spinning… you get the picture. There are shortfalls in renewable energy generation so 100% generation is a big ask. That’s where natural gas is quick to step in and generate extra electricity to keep the lights on.
Like many things in life, when it comes to our energy system, a balanced approach makes good sense.
For instance, if we made our energy system 100% sustainable, we would likely see a big increase in household energy costs. The reason for the increase in costs is that we will need to overbuild solar and wind generation to ensure that at those peak demand times (when natural gas could easily step in as back up) there is enough electricity to power the country. This will likely also result in a lot of energy wastage, as we aren’t able to cost-effectively store excess solar and wind generation yet.
Generating 100% renewable energy that is available on demand to meet the entire country’s energy needs requires a huge investment and would significantly increase energy costs to all.
Should I be choosing solar instead of natural gas?Natural gas is a great back up option to solar at home, and many gas hot water systems are solar-compatible. This means if there’s not enough sun to warm the water for everyone, natural gas will step in to provide as much hot water as needed.
If you’re considering a full solar set up at home, we think you should check all the costs carefully. Geographical location and position of your home, the number of solar panels, and having a battery for energy storage are just some things to consider – and for now the costs are still expensive. There is also potential for changes to energy pricing to impact solar users.
We say keep a watch on the cost of solar installations and battery storage. As technology progresses it should become more economical to utilise.
How is choosing natural gas for my home still a good choice?The living is easy in a natural gas home. The comfort, control, reliability and convenience of fast, powerful hot water, home heating and cooking make natural gas the natural choice for around 270,000 Kiwi homes.
With increasing demand for electricity from multiple devices at home, electric vehicles and a growing population, rest easy knowing that every appliance powered by natural gas is helping New Zealand out by easing pressure on our energy supply.
Plus with The Gas Hub’s free connection offer, you’re onto a good thing by going with gas.
What does the future hold for gas?We support New Zealand moving towards being carbon-neutral and believe that gas energy is just getting started.
There are some exciting transformational technologies being researched and developed here in New Zealand and globally. You may have heard about the potential for hydrogen, biogas and carbon capture and storage (CSS) in our energy mix. We are watching closely to see what part gas will play as we transition to a lower carbon future.
In the meantime, we know that Kiwi homes and businesses will use natural gas well into the future. Natural gas still has an important role supporting New Zealand’s energy mix.
Read more and see our vision a gas home in the future here.
Ready to connect?
Make sure you take a look at the connection process. It tells you what you'll need to make choices about as part of your natural gas connection.
Start your natural gas connection application. Our customer team will then ring you to confirm a few more questions.
Want to know more?
If you've had a good look around our website and still have questions let us know what you'd like more information about.