Gas meter in frozen weather with snow on top

Natural gas meters are designed to withstand cold weather, but the build-up of snow and ice can damage them and cause other safety issues.

“To ensure proper operation and your safety, make sure to keep gas meters free from snow and ice,” said Kevin Thomas, Safety Specialist for UniSource Energy Services Gas in Prescott.

Please follow these guidelines to keep your family safe and to help prevent service disruptions from damaged gas equipment:

  • In the winter, keep melting or dripping water away from your meter to prevent it from freezing and avoid ice buildup. If ice does form, don’t try to remove it yourself. Call our Customer Care team at 1-877-837-4968 and we’ll send out a technician to assess the situation.
  • Keep your gas furnace exhaust vents clear of snow and ice so that appliances can vent freely. If the vent is clogged, carbon monoxide (CO) may build up in your home and create a safety hazard.
  • Don’t allow snow to cover your gas meter or its pressure regulator. Gently dust off the snow with a broom or your hand. Don’t use a shovel, which could damage the meter.
  • When shoveling snow, plowing or snow blowing, don’t pile snow against your meter or its equipment. The snow could melt and refreeze, causing damage.
  • Make sure that plow operators know where your gas meter is located – especially if it’s near the street – so that they don’t accidentally hit it.

Also be alert to the smell of gas from a leak or damaged meter or line. “You should never ignore the smell of gas, which resembles sulphur and rotten eggs,” Thomas said. “If you suspect you have a leak, move to a safe location, call 911 and then call us at 1-877-837-4968.”