FILE - Natural gas

(The Center Square) – Ohio’s ranking as one of the nation’s best states for energy costs could take a hit as temperatures continue to rise and electricity use increases.

WalletHub, a personal finance website, ranked the state as the 15th-best in the country when comparing each state’s total monthly energy bills by using a formula that takes into account electricity, natural gas, motor fuel and home heating oil.

“July tends to be the hottest month of year. In the U.S., energy costs eat between 5% and 22% of families’ total after-tax income, with the poorest Americans, of 25 million households, paying the highest of that range,” Adam McCann, a WalletHub financial writer, wrote in the report.

Ohio’s average total energy bill per household was $308, slightly higher than Montana’s $305 and better than New Mexico's $310.

Pennsylvania was the closest of all of Ohio’s neighbors with a monthly cost of $313. Michigan had a cost of $315, followed by Kentucky at $320, West Virginia at $343 and Indiana at $356.

Ohio’s monthly electricity cost of $115 and motor fuel cost of $140 ranked among the lowest in the nation. Its natural gas cost of $50 and home heating oil cost of $3 were among the worst.

“Ohio is the 15th-least energy-expensive state with an average monthly energy bill of $308. This is mostly due to the fact that it has one of the lowest average residential prices for home heating oil – just $2.62 per gallon, and for natural gas – $9.58,” said Jill Gonzalez, a WalletHub analyst.

Connecticut ranked as the state with the highest total energy cost at $411 a month, followed by Wyoming, Massachusetts, Georgia and Alabama. The District of Columbia at $217 a month had the lowest energy cost, followed by Washington, Colorado, Oregon and Arizona.

Regional Editor

An Ohio native, J.D. Davidson is a veteran journalist with more than 30 years of experience in newspapers in Ohio, Georgia, Alabama and Texas. He has served as a reporter, editor, managing editor and publisher.