Meter services charge
Meter services charges cover the cost of providing your meters and the ongoing costs of operating and maintaining your meters.
This cost structure provides a transparent way of billing metering costs so that you’re only required to pay for your own metering services. The aim is to move towards greater competition in metering services in the electricity market and greater customer choice in the future.
What are the charges?
Meter services charges apply for customers using existing basic meters (type 5 and 6) for their primary and controlled load tariffs, plus metering for solar connections.
Each of these charges is made up of two components:
- Capital component – covers the cost of the meter
- Non-capital component – covers the ongoing costs of operating and maintaining the meter
Only one primary network charge will apply at the same premises, however if you have both Tariff 31 and 33 you'll receive two controlled load charges. Solar charges only apply if you have a solar power system installed.
Network Tariff Class
Primary - cents per day
Controlled load - cents per day
Solar - cents per day
Charges are based on Energex rates, under the Queensland Government's Uniform Tariff Policy to ensure customers in regional Queensland pay the same Metering Services Charges as customers in South East Queensland.
If you're making changes to your tariffs which require a meter replacement, you'll need to pay upfront for the cost of this new meter.
Your bill may look different to others depending on the type of tariffs you have. Let's look at some examples.
Frequently asked questions
Why have these charges been introduced?
The Australian Energy Regulator changed the way in which metering services are classified, which is helping the industry to transition to a fairer, more transparent way of billing metering costs. Previously, meter services charges were spread across all customers and wrapped up into network costs.
Does everyone have to pay this?
These changes apply to all customers across Queensland with a regulated meter.
If I'm a designated self-read customer, do I have to pay this charge?
Yes, you are still required to pay the metering services charges, as this covers the combined cost of the meter and operating, maintaining and reading your meter. While you may provide your own readings, we are still required to visit your property at least once a year to obtain readings.
Will I pay meter services charges if I have a card-operated meter?
No. Meter services charges do not apply to you, whether you are connected to the grid or not. Card-operated metering costs are bundled in with other charges that Ergon Network passes through to Ergon Retail.
What if I want to change tariffs but it requires a new meter?
If you want to change tariffs and this requires a new meter you will be required to pay an upfront cost for that meter.
What if I am forced to get a new meter because the tariff no longer exists?
If the Queensland Competition Authority removes your tariff from its list of regulated prices without a transition period to another tariff, you will not be charged for the cost of a new meter.
What if my meter actually stops working? Do I have to pay for the replacement?
If your meter has malfunctioned and is no longer operational, we will cover the upfront cost of its replacement.
Will supply charges still appear on my bill?
Yes, these cover the costs of supplying and maintaining your electricity service, including costs such as poles and wires, billing and administration.
Don't supply charges cover metering?
No, they cover the costs of supplying and maintaining your electricity service, not your meters.
From 1 January 2017, large business customers with meter types 1, 2, 3 or 4 will have meter services charges applied to their accounts.
These charges cover the cost of providing these meter types and the ongoing costs of operating and maintaining these meters.
Metering costs have not previously been applied to accounts with these meter types and will not be applied retrospectively. This change brings large businesses into line with other customers who already pay meter services charges.
Charges are calculated on a per-day rate for each site and will vary depending on the number of meters at each site.
|Meter services charges - dollars per day||excl. GST||incl. GST|
|1 meter on site||1.970||2.167|
|2 meters on site||3.950||4.345|
|3 meters on site||5.920||6.512|
|4 meters on site||7.890||8.679|
|5+ meters on site||9.860||10.846|
Charging for high voltage meter testing is excluded.
Meter charges are subject to change. Any additional costs we incur on your behalf from Ergon Network or your meter provider will be passed on.
If you require a new or replacement meter at your premises, you'll need to pay upfront for the cost of this new meter.
Competition in metering services from 1 December 2017 is designed to give large business customers greater choice in the provision of metering services.
More information on competition in metering will be made available during 2017.
Frequently asked questions
When will the charges commence?
The charges will commence from 1 January 2017.
When will I see these charges on my bills?
Charges will begin to appear on bill from the January billing period onwards. They will not be applied retrospectively.
Why are we charging large customers for their meters?
All customers are required to pay for their metering costs. This change brings large businesses into line with other business and residential customers who already pay meter services charges.
What types of meters are these charges for?
These metering charges will apply to meter types 1, 2 3 and 4, used by large business customers.
What will my charges be?
Charges are calculated on a per-day rate according to the number of meters at your site and will appear as a single line item on your bill. Please refer to the meter services charges table in the information section for large businesses.
How significant are these charges in relation to the size of my bill?
For most of large business customers, meter charges will represent less than 0.5% of their electricity bill. For a small number, it may represent a slightly higher proportion of their bill than this.
What does the meter services charge cover?
Meter charges cover the costs of providing, operating and maintaining your meters. This excludes meter testing charges for high voltage meters.
Why is the cost different to basic meters?
Meter types 1, 2, 3 and 4 are more complex than basic meters used by small business and residential customers.
Why have metering costs for basic meters already been introduced?
Costs for basic meters used by residential and small businesses were introduced by the Australian Energy Regulator, with costs passed through from distribution companies to retailers and then to customers.
Why are these charges being introduced now?
Other electricity retailers already pass these costs through to their customers.
Ergon Retail has previously used the Queensland Government’s electricity subsidy to cover these costs. However, as each customer only needs to pay for their own metering, the costs associated with these meters needed to be applied to individual accounts.
How is this related to competition in metering?
This is an important step in preparing our customers for national policy changes around competition in metering from 1 December 2017. Businesses need to understand the costs of their metering so they will be able to compare and choose a meter provider.
How can I avoid paying metering charges?
Metering is an integral part of the supply of electricity to your premises. Meters for large business customers are more complex than for smaller business and residential customers and as such are more expensive to purchase and maintain. For large businesses using significant volumes of electricity, metering costs represent a very small proportion of their total bill.
How can I get better value from my metering?
Metering for large business customers offers a number of features that are not generally available for smaller customers with basic meters. These features include:
- 30 minute load profiles;
- Quick and easy changes to tariffs (no requirement for a truck to be sent to site);
- No need for you to provide access to your site for meter reading purposes; and
- Access to future products such as EnergyCheck Enterprise (coming soon!).