Did you know…?

For residential user connections, a meter box as specified for domestic electric meter boxes – NZS 6206:1980 with minimum dimensions of 400mm wide x600mm tall x 220mm deep (door inclusive), is required. 

From October 1, 2017 new installations that are requested to be metered and livened onto the WEL’s network area, must comply with the above size requirements.


 

What is a smart METER?

An electronic meter box installed in your home or business. It is designed to help you and WEL Networks save money and increase choices by using the electricity network as efficiently as possible.

How does a smart METER work?

A smart box measures electricity usage in your home and communicates usage, and/or any outages direct to the WEL Networks operation centre via a radio signal. Because the information collected is in real time we can send a repair crew quickly, optimise electricity flows and provide advice to customers on energy efficiency.

How much do they cost?

There's no charge for installation; the devices are just one asset which makes our network function, just like power lines and transformers. They're part of our $30 million programme aimed at improving customer service and boosting efficiency and reliability of the region’s electricity network.

HOW WILL THE SMART METER BENEFIT my HOUSEHOLD OR BUSINESS?

A Smart Meter is about efficiency - for you and for WEL Networks.

  • We can diagnose causes of power spikes and dimming, enabling power quality problems to be resolved faster
     
  • Use power wisely to minimise price rises in the long term. Smart meters, coupled with the region-wide radio communications network (called a smart grid), will enable WEL to learn more about how customers are using energy and make adjustments to the way we supply it. Over time, this means WEL can provide you with better information for making choices about how you use

Will a meter reading person still need to come to my home/business?

The smart meter is fitted with a wireless communication device allowing WEL Networks to read your meter remotely, so physical visits by meter readers are no longer required. From time to time there may be some technical/ maintenance visits required.

How long will installation take?

Around 30 minutes during which time the power will be off at your property. Please let us know if you need power to stay on for medical reasons.

How is  the smart meter different from my existing electricity meter?

Your existing electricity meter is a passive device that simply measures your usage for the purposes of billing. This is different to a smart meter which is an active management device. It provides data to WEL including faults information, and has the capacity in the future for us to help you use electricity more efficiently.

How will the smart network help the environment?

Over time, the smart network will deliver a more efficient electricity network, ultimately delaying the need to build new generating capacity or larger transmission and distribution networks.

Is my electricity retailer aware of what's happening?

All electricity retailers in the Waikato region are aware we are installing the Smart Network. This requirement for meter replacement is regulated by the NZ Government.

DO SMART METERS POSE ANY HEALTH RISKS?

Independent research from the University of Canterbury and an independent review we commissioned have conformed that smart meter signals pose minimal risk to health with emissions that are one hundred times weaker than cellphones which are in everyday use. See safety of smart meters and safety of RF fields from smart meters.

More questions? Talk to us on 0800 800 935.