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Back to help centre Moving, connections and metering

Smart meter FAQs

What is a smart meter, how is it different to a basic meter, and how do you know if you’ve got one? We’ve put together some FAQs to help you understand your smart meter.

What is a smart meter?

Smart meters digitally measure your electricity usage each 30 minutes and send that information directly to your retailer (in this case Simply Energy) each day.

Once a smart meter is installed, there's no need for a meter reader to visit the property. You will usually be billed monthly. 

What’s the difference between a digital and smart meter?

Smart and digital meters look very similar and show a digital reading on the face of the meter. 

However, digital meters are generally read every 3 months by your local distributor. 

Smart meters communicate wirelessly and send readings direct to Simply Energy, which allows us to bill you.

Learn more about billing cycles here.

How do I know if I have a smart meter?

Smart meters generally have a digital face with numbers or digits that represent your current read data and electricity consumption. In Victoria, smart meters are in place in all homes.  

Smart Meter

Basic or analogue meters generally have a dial that spins around, recording your consumption in kWh. Your meter reading will increase based on this.

analogue Meter

Are smart meters safe?

All smart and digital meters are manufactured and installed according to Australian Standards and are regulated by the Australian Communications and Media Authority. 

Smart meters produce less radio frequency than most standard household items, including baby monitors and mobile phones.

For more information on smart meter safety, visit the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA) website. 

Do I need to have a smart meter?

It depends. You may require a meter upgrade to cater for solar or additional heating. In this case, we might need to install a smart meter to allow us to get frequent actual readings and to invoice you on time.

How much does it cost for a smart meter?

If you’re with Simply Energy, changing over to a smart meter is free. 

However, there may be additional costs if, for instance, we find asbestos or if extra work is required when we attempt to change your meter over. Don’t worry though – we can talk you through this if needed.

What if I don’t want a smart meter?

Although smart meters are perfectly safe, if you don’t want one installed, you can opt out and ask for a digital meter to be installed instead. 

Please note: as we will need to visit your property once every 3 months to read your digital meter, there may be an additional cost of up to $70 per quarter.

I’m building a property and want to install a smart meter. Is there a cost?

There could be. Please contact our customer care team via online chat or call 13 88 08 (Mon-Fri, 8am-7pm AEST).

Please note: the price quoted will be for the installation of the meter. Any additional works required (asbestos removal, rewiring etc.) will be at your own cost.

I’m renting and want to install a smart meter. Do I need to ask my landlord?

Not if you’re the electricity account holder. Simply Energy only needs permission from the account holder who’s occupying the property.

Will there be a power outage when you upgrade my meter?

Yes. This is to ensure our technicians can complete the work in a safe environment. Straightforward meter changes may take up to an hour. For more complex installations, the power could be out for up to 3 hours. 

Will my smart meter interfere with household appliances?

No. Your digital meter operates at a low frequency and won’t interfere with any other equipment in your home.