FAQs concerning the gas changeover

Here we answer all your most urgent questions on the subject of the gas changeover

Who is wesernetz?

wesernetz (formerly SWB Netze) is a subsidiary of SWB. wesernetz is responsible for the supply networks for electricity, natural gas, drinking water and district heating in Bremen. In Stuhr and Weyhe and the collective municipality of Thedinghausen, wesernetz is only responsible for the natural gas network.

What changes will be taking place and why?

As things stand, all natural gas users in the area covered by wesernetz are supplied with low caloric gas from the Netherlands and north-western Germany for their cooking and heating appliances. But a switch to the more energy-rich alternative high caloric gas is now required due to the constantly decreasing output of low caloric gas. As we make the switch to using this different type of gas, a technical inspection of all gas appliances needs to be carried out so modifications can be made in order to ensure the efficient and reliable running of these appliances.

Who will be affected by the gas changeover?

All households and businesses with a natural gas connection in Bremen and Bremerhaven, Stuhr, Weyhe and the collective municipality of Thedinghausen (around 170,000 in total).

Will the gas changeover cost me anything?

wesernetz will not charge you anything for the adjustments made to your gas appliances to make them compatible with the new high caloric gas. Instead, the costs will be passed onto gas customers through the network tariffs. The network tariffs are a component of the price of gas to be paid by all gas users/customers. You will only have to pay for a new appliance in the unlikely event that your gas appliance cannot be modified.

Will my bills increase due to this new high caloric gas?

No. The price per kilowatt hour is the same regardless of whether you use low caloric gas or high caloric gas.

What will happen to appliances that are incompatible with the changeover?

Our latest experiences with the implementation of this project show that only a small number of appliances are incompatible with the changeover. Appliances that cannot be modified must be replaced with a compliant (modifiable) alternative. The owner must cover the costs of replacing the appliance.

What subsidies are available?

Energy providers often offer attractive subsidy schemes for purchasing new appliances as part of the gas changeover process. Please get in touch with your energy provider to find out about any financial help that may be available. Additionally, we work closely with the consumer association in Bremen, where you will also find a comprehensive range of advisory services.

If, as the owner of a customer facility or an appliance, you install a new appliance due to the upcoming gas changeover and this appliance no longer has to be modified as part of the changeover process, you may be entitled to reimbursement from wesernetz under certain conditions. You will find all the relevant information and application forms at www.gasumstellung.de. Alternatively, you can call us on 0800 359 4040.

How long will the gas changeover process take?

The wesernetz natural gas network has been provisionally divided up into 36 sections. Work has been under way in the first section in Bremen-Mahndorf since mid-2016, with gas appliances being registered in around 3,500 households. We started feeding high caloric gas into the grid in this area for the first time in June 2017. Other geographic areas are going to be gradually phased into the process one by one. The gas changeover is expected to be completed in all sections by 2021.

Who will perform the changeover?

Regardless of which natural gas provider supplies your gas, wesernetz is the local network operator and is obliged under section 19a of the German Energy Industry Act (Energiewirtschaftsgesetz) to carry out the gas changeover. Specially trained technicians will visit every household and business to carry out the necessary measures.

What exactly will happen during the gas changeover?

The changeover consists of eight different stages. Using a single geographic area as an example, the sequence is as follows:

  1. Written information about the gas changeover
  2. Written notice of the registration process
  3. Start of registration of gas appliances (home visits)
  4. Quality assurance (home visits) as a follow-up
  5. Written notice of modification process
  6. Start of modification of gas appliances (home visits)
  7. First phase of gas changeover (in section 1)
  8. Further quality assurance (home visits) as a follow-up

(The process will start again in the next area approx. every six weeks.)

How will I find out when the gas changeover is set to start in my area?

wesernetz will write to you well in advance to let you know when your area is next in line for the gas changeover. In addition to the useful facts about the gas changeover available on this website, from spring 2016 you will also be able to enter your address into our online system to find out when your gas connection will be converted.

How do the home visits for registering and modifying appliances work?

We will visit you in person both in order to register your gas appliances and to make the necessary adjustments. You will receive a notification letter containing a specific date for the appointment and your personal customer number around two weeks before we visit you.

What will happen during the registration process?

Gas appliances will be registered in home visits about a year before the high caloric gas is due to be introduced in your area. We will notify you in writing in good time. A visual inspection (current state analysis) and an exhaust gas analysis will be carried out on each appliance. Any necessary readjustments will also be made. All the appliances and nameplates will then be photographed and electronically registered. The natural gas installation will also be examined, the meter reading recorded and the methane concentration in the room air checked. Each gas appliance must be identified and the conditions for the modifications must be specified. There are three different possibilities for modifications depending on the appliance:

  1. The appliance is self-regulating and does not require any further work in preparation for the changeover.
  2. The appliance needs to be modified before the high caloric gas is introduced. wesernetz will order and pay for the components to be installed in the appliance and install these during the appointment for the necessary modifications.
  3. The appliance needs to be adjusted after the high caloric gas has been introduced. wesernetz will order and pay for the components to be installed in the appliance and install these during the appointment for the necessary modifications.

What will happen during the modification process?

Around a year after our first home visit, we will write to you again to arrange a second appointment. Any gas appliances which are not self-regulating will now be modified. The technician will bring all the necessary components to your home and fit your appliances with this equipment.

How can I be sure that the technician really works for wesernetz?

The notification letter you receive will contain a personal customer number. The technician must be able to tell you this customer number from your front door. If you cannot find your letter, the technician will prove their identity using other information that can only relate to your household. If you doubt the accuracy of this information, please call wesernetz for free on 0800 359 4040.

What will happen if I refuse to have my gas appliances modified?

Rule of thumb: the use of gas appliances is inadmissible if the necessary modifications have not been made. The network operator must therefore disable any appliances which have not been updated. According to section 19a of the German Energy Industry Act (Energiewirtschaftsgesetz), as the local network operator responsible for the gas changeover, wesernetz is also responsible for ensuring the safety of all households. wesernetz will be obliged to disable your gas connection if the necessary modifications are not carried out.

What should I do if a fault occurs after the home visit?

If there are any faults in your system after we have visited your home during the gas changeover, please inform us here at wesernetz first by calling our free hotline on 0800 359 4040 before instructing any other company to remedy the fault.

wesernetz will carry out any remedial work required free of charge.

Do you have any more questions about the gas changeover?

Please feel free to call us if you have any more questions. Call us on our free hotline from March 2016: 0800 359 4040. You can also write to us using our contact form. We will write to you personally in good time as soon as the gas changeover is active in your area.

Provisional schedule for the gas changeover
Start of registration process Introduction of high caloric gas
2016 2017
2017 2018
2018 2019
2019 2020
2020 2021

You will find a bigger map of the gas changeover here.