Frequently asked questions
Digital Meter Replacement
Why are you installing digital meters?
All new and replacement meters in NSW, ACT, SA and QLD must now be digital.
Do I need to get a digital meter now?
Not immediately. Only new and replacement meters are required to be digital
Will you be replacing everyone’s meters?
No, only new and replacement meters are required to be digital.
I don't want a digital meter - can I get a new basic meter instead?
No, under these new regulations your new or replacement meter needs to be digital to be compliant.
Do I need to my landlord's permission?
No, as the account holder of the electricity service at the property you're not required to seek your landlord's permission. However you may need to contact them if we identify any issues with your wiring which need to be fixed by an electrician
Will my meter be digital if I don’t have 3G or 4G mobile coverage?
Your meter will record thirty, fifteen or five minute data and a meter reader will collect your usage data manually.
If I have two meters but only one needs replacing will you change both?
Yes, meters at the same site must all be the same type – either basic or digital, not a mix of the two.
I have solar connected at my property. Can I have a digital meter with solar?
Yes, digital meters work with your solar installation.
Can I take my digital meter with me when I move?
No, all meters must remain where they have been installed.
Is anyone excluded from this metering change?
Sites in Mount Isa and selected isolated communities are exempt as they're not part of the National Electricity Market. In these locations, we'll determine the meter required for your premises.
Will my meter box need to be upgraded? Who pays for it?
You won’t have to make any changes if your meter box/board complies with current standards. If it doesn't, or contains asbestos or timber backing, you'll need to organise for it to be made compliant at your expense.
Prices and billing
What will the digital meter cost?
Customers moving to a new or replacement digital meter will see the same meter services charges as those with basic meters.
Can I stay on quarterly bills with a digital meter?
There are no extra charges for monthly billing. You have a choice to continue with quarterly billing if it suits you better, however monthly billing means you receive smaller, more manageable bills around the same time each month.
Will I get a new bill after the meter is installed? When do I have to pay this?
You'll receive two interim bills - the first is for the period between your last bill and the date of your meter change and the next is for the period between your meter change and the start of your normal bill cycle. All of your bills will have clearly marked due dates.
Will a digital meter change any payment arrangements on my account?
Replacing your meter will not change any payment arrangements you have on your account.
Why am I charged a manual read fee when I don't want my data sent electronically?
A manual read fee for Type 4A meters will apply for customers who specifically request to disable the remote communications on their digital meter which prevents the meter being read remotely. This charge covers the additional cost of reading the meter manually, including travel. It does not apply if the remote communications could not be enabled for other reasons.
A charge of $45.08 per scheduled read will appear in the ‘Other Charges and Credits’ section of your bill.
This charge can be avoided by requesting us to enable the remote communications on the digital meter.
Why do you need to turn off my power?
Your power needs to be off to safely remove and replace your meter. This is done by turning off the main switch on your switchboard. The change process is expected to take around 30 minutes or a little longer if the work is more complex than anticipated.
How will I know when the installation will happen?
We'll send a notification to your premises address with the date range our crews will be there to install your meter.
Do I need to be there when the meter is installed?
If your meter box, main switchboard/s and main switch/es can be easily accessed, you do not need to be there.
Do I need to organise an electrician?
Some customers prefer to have an electrician check their meter board before the installation, however it's not a requirement.
Who do I call if I want to change the appointment time?
Please contact us using the phone number provided on the notifcation with details on the interruption to your supply.
Who will turn up to install my new meter?
Technicians will be authorised by Ergon Retail and will carry or wear identification. They are required to produce identification to you if requested.
When you install the meter, will my power be switched off?
Yes, usually for about 30 minutes however more complex jobs could take longer.
How long will it take to be installed?
Usually the job will take no longer than 4 hours depending on the complexity of the job.
Safety, Health and Security
Do digital meters cause any health effects?
Current research indicates that there are no established health effects from using a digital meter. Your meter will send signals at very low power for just a fraction of a second.
How are signal levels from digital meters regulated in Australia?
Digital meters, mobile phones and other wireless devices used for communication are regulated by the Australian Communications and Media Authority, which requires them to comply with exposure limits ensuring they are not harmful. For more information visit acma.gov.au
Is my meter and data secure? Can it be hacked?
Digital meters and associated data communication equipment must comply with strict standards for accuracy and security. Data is sent using systems and protocols that meet Queensland Government cyber security standards, the Australian Government’s Privacy Act 1988 and the National Electricity Law. These standards are the same ones that protect all government data. All customer data will be held and collected in compliance with these requirements, just as it is today.
Will anyone else see my electricity data?
No. Your data and personal information are protected under the National Electricity Law, Queensland Government cyber security standards and the Australian Government’s Privacy Act 1988.
Do digital meters cause fires?
Fires may be caused by faulty wiring, but not your meter. If you’re concerned about the condition of your electricity wiring, please contact a licenced electrical contractor.