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Your meter

An electricity meter keeps track of how much power you’re using.

Electricity is used by the kilowatt-hour (kWh), more commonly known as a ‘unit’. One unit is the equivalent of 1000 watts (kW) switched on for one hour.

There are two types of meters available in New Zealand: Smart meters and analogue meters. Smart meters are progressively rolling out throughout New Zealand and offer a range of benefits compared to their analogue counterparts.

Types of meters

Smart meters

Most of our customers now have smart meters. They record the amount of electricity you’re using at half hourly intervals.

Smart meters are fitted with a wireless communication device and if the meter can communicate, i.e. there’s mobile phone coverage, that information is sent each night. No need for anyone to visit your property, be at home or disturb your pets.

Benefits of smart meters

  • Real-time information — your smart meter accurately records your consumption during each of the peak, off-peak and shoulder periods.
  • Save money on your bill — having a smart meter means when you use power at cheaper times of the day, it will save you money on your bill.
  • Easy access — generally where the meter can communicate easily, connection, disconnections, and final readings can be done remotely.

We acknowledge that some are concerned about smart meter technology and what this means for consumers. However, we need you to know that smart meters can only provide us with data about your electricity consumption. The communication networks they use are similar to those used by mobile phone or internet connections.

If you’d like more information about meters, check out the Electricity Authority’s website

Analogue meters

This type requires a meter reader to visit your property and physically record the amount of electricity you’ve used since the last time it was read.

Energy retailers will often ‘estimate’ your consumption, i.e the units used, every second month to reduce meter reading costs.

Analogue meters can’t record how much electricity you’re used at different pricing times. This means you won’t be able to take advantage of our peak, shoulder and off-peak pricing. Instead, you’ll pay the same amount throughout the day regardless of when your electricity is used.

Analogues are being phased out and replaced by smart meters which offer benefits to you, your retailer and us.

Safety around all meters

Your meter is sealed for a reason. It’s not safe to open or tamper with it.  You’re putting yourself at risk of electric shock, burns, electrocution and even death.

We're upgrading to smart meters

About 90% of our customers now have smart meters.

If your meter hasn’t been changed or upgraded yet, we’ll send you a letter and follow up with a phone call.

In some instances, customers’ meters haven’t been upgraded. There’s a number of reasons why, including the need for wiring upgrades or access issues.  Please get in touch if you’re unsure why your meter hasn’t been upgraded.

Internal Meter Boards

You don’t need to be home when your meter is changed unless your meter board is located inside or somewhere that needs special access.

The meter reader who already visits your property will update the meter on our behalf.

unplug during changeover

We strongly recommend you unplug any sensitive items such as computers, televisions or other appliances that contain a computer chip. If you’ll be out all day, please leave your fridges and freezers plugged in.

If the new meter won’t fit on your current meter board, or there is an issue with your old board, your meter won’t be changed on the day. Instead, we’ll contact you to discuss options.

How to read your meter

Smart meters

The screen on your smart meter will automatically change every 6 seconds to different sets of information. The digital display shows:

  • display mode — tells you the type of information you’re viewing
  • a reading — the actual information

See the interactive diagram below for the different types of information you can view on your smart meter.

Our smart meters also have two small red lights on the front labelled Pulse 1 and Pulse 2. Pulse 2 flashes when we are load controlling. You can keep your load down by switching off unnecessary appliances when Pulse 2 is flashing.

ANALOGUE METERS

Traditional analogue meters can have different types of meter dials. Some have ‘indicating’ dials while others use a ‘cyclometer’ register.

  • Always read dials from left to right
  • Write down the number
  • Subtract your previous meter reading from the current reading
  • The difference will be the number of units of electricity you have used since your last reading.

Your smart meter display

Select a display mode to the right to find out more

WHAT’S ON SCREEN

  • Your meter will cycle through 9 display modes showing different electricity usage.
  • The display mode code is highlighted in orange above.
  • Some customers may have an additional item between the night and peak display modes. This only applies for customers that export power.
  • Total use

    Total amount of electricity used of day and night

  • Day

    Total amount of electricity used between 7am to 11pm

  • Night

    Total amount of electricity used between 11pm to 7am

  • Peak

    Total amount of electricity used during peak times (7.00am – 9.30am & 5.30pm – 8.00pm)

  • Shoulder

    Total amount of electricity used during shoulder times (9.30am–5.30pm and 8pm‑11pm)

  • Off-peak

    Total amount of electricity used during off-peak times (11pm–7am)

  • Date

    Date screen

  • Time

    Time screen (24hr)

  • Signal

    Signal Strength Code of the Modem within the meter