Why are people getting smart energy meters?

Published On: December 19, 2023

Why are people getting smart energy meters?

Smart Energy Meters in NSW

Back in December, 2017, the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) introduced a rule that required electricity providers to install Smart Meters at new builds or where a manual meter required replacement.

The benefits to consumers are numerous, and if you’re hoping to upgrade to a Smart Meter, you may find the following information useful.

What is a Smart Energy Meter?

Essentially, a Smart Energy Meter is a digital device that replaces the manual meter you may be familiar with. Being digital, it’s a two-way communication system that measures both when and how much energy you’re using.

The unit can measure your usage every 30 minutes (or less) and transmits these readings to your energy provider. The traditional meter you may have only reads and records your total electricity use for a set period and is either read manually or estimated by your provider.

A Smart Meter can be read remotely, by you and by your energy provider.

Currently, an upgrade to a Smart Meter is not optional with your energy provider if you have a manual meter currently in place. Most providers only install a Smart Meter once the manual meter has reached ‘end of life’, or in new builds where a meter is being installed for the first time.

How does a Smart Energy Meter benefit you?

Cost savings.

  • The Smart Meter sends information to your retailer digitally, therefore cutting out meter reading charges.
  • Connection fees are reduced as the unit can be activated remotely, therefore power can be turned on or off remotely, removing the need for technician visits and fees.

Power use is transparent and accurate.

  • Removes the previously used ‘usage estimation’. A Smart Meter reading is in real time so you’re only paying for exactly what you’ve used.
  • Information transparency is available to you. As a business owner or householder, you can simply review your current usage, letting you know exactly how much power you’ve used, and what the current charges are.

Flexibility and reliability.

  • By having a digitally based Smart Meter, your energy supplier can provide you with peak and low power periods, allowing you to plan when to use appliances in cheaper periods.
  • Instead of being read every three months, in the case of traditional meters, a Smart Energy Meter means you can discuss a monthly billing plan with your provider.
  • Your power can be turned on and off remotely, providing an instant response should you be moving into a new property. Because of the digital infrastructure, a Smart Meter can also feed any supply outages back to the energy supplier for a faster repair response.

Looking for more information on Smart Energy Meters?

At Faraday Group, we’ve put together some informative articles about Smart Energy Meters, click the links below to have a read:

The NSW Government also have a comprehensive guide to many of the questions you may have surrounding the advantages, installation types and FAQs regarding Smart Energy Meters.

How Faraday Group can help with your Smart Energy Meter installation.

Traditionally, electrical meter installations were the realm of Level 2 Electricians, but not that long ago the rules were changed so that the electrical retailers have responsibility for it. They have their own people that do the installs.

Here’s the problem though: they’ll only hang the meter – they won’t fix any issues that prevent them from doing it.

So many times we’ve had customers who’ve asked their retailer for a new meter, then the installer comes out and leaves a note saying the meter can’t be hung because the board contains asbestos. Or maybe the service fuses aren’t compliant. Or the main switch isn’t compliant. Or they think the board isn’t weather-proof. If something like that happens, they won’t touch it.

So if you do want a new meter, you have to make the changes to your switchboard to handle it. Only a level 2 electrician can make those changes.

If you’d like to talk about upgrading to a smart meter, or even if you need work done on your electrical meter in Sydney, feel free to give us a call. We can make sure your switchboard is ready for it.

Share this!

More To Explore