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Decatur Utilities (DU) has provided natural gas as an energy choice to Decatur residents since the early 1950s. Natural gas is a safe, efficient energy choice - perfect for heating homes, heating water, cooking and fueling business processes. DU purchases natural gas from Southern Natural Gas. Wholesale natural gas rates are currently at historic lows - and DU passes those savings on to its customers in the form of low retail rates.












In 2018 and 2022, DU's Natural Gas Department received the Alabama Public Gas Association's (APGA) SOAR Bronze Award for System Operations and Reliability. 

Out of approximately 750 APGA members, DU was selected by the APGA Operations and Safety Committee based on a review and grading of DU's natural gas policies and procedures. The award reflects DU’s demonstration of excellence in system integrity, system improvement, employee safety, and workforce development.


  • System integrity refers to the natural gas distribution system performing its overall intended function safely, efficiently and effectively.

  • System improvement refers to keeping the natural gas system well maintained and up-to-date. 

  • Employee safety refers to systems that exhibit excellence in programs that stress educational involvement and accountability.

  • Workforce development refers to a focus on creative recruitment, training, education and development practices.


Download our
Pipeline Awareness
Safety Brochure HERE 

Reading Your Meter

Your​ natural gas meter is a tool for measuring the amount of natural gas you use in any given month. This measurement is made in cubic feet. There are four dials. Each dial represents a single number in the reading.  

  • Reading a natural gas meter

    • Do NOT touch the meter while reading it.

    • Read the dials from left to right.

    • Read the numbers as indicated by the hands on the dials.

      • If a hand is between two numbers, read the smaller number (unless when the hand is between the 0 and 9, in which case, you record the number nine.

    • Subtract the current reading from the previous month's reading to determine usage.

    • This reading is 9067.


Service Line Responsibility

Natural Gas Benefits

  • Low Cost

    • Natural gas costs are typically far lower than propane or electricity.

  • Convenience

    • Delivery of natural gas is not as susceptible to weather issues, traffic problems or vehicle incidents.

    • Natural gas is still available when electric service is interrupted by a storm or mechanical failure.

    • Natural gas provides instant heat and a more consistent temperature for cooking.

    • Clothes dry faster with natural gas heat.

  • Improved Comfort

    • Natural gas water heaters recover twice as fast as electric water heaters.

    • Natural gas furnaces can be up to 97% efficient and deliver heat up to 25 degrees warmer than electric heat pumps.

    • Natural gas furnaces never call on auxiliary "strip" heat.

    • Natural gas provides "instant" heat you can feel.

  • Proven Safety

    • Natural gas is lighter than air and will quickly disperse into the surrounding atmosphere.

    • DU adds a distinctive rotten egg smell to help with identification.

    • DU surveys its natural gas lines on a regular basis to identify and repair any leaks.

    • DU has aggressively replaced all cast iron piping on its natural gas system.

Natural Gas Incentives

See incentives and rebates here.

Natural Gas Safety

  • DU's safety tips for natural gas can be found here.

Energy Efficiency

  • DU's energy efficiency tips can be found here.

Other Information

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