Smart meters and trying to change energy retailer


I’m interested to know if anyone who has a smart meter installed has had trouble trying to change energy retailers. I’d be interested to know:

  • who installed the meter and did it cost you any money?
  • which state you’re in?
  • which retailer you tried to switch to and had issues with?
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@roma.25 @DavidC @Jo_E @tndkemp @lamaino @PhilT - if anyone has an experience they can share, it would really help out our research.

Victoria mandated smart meters a few years ago and made us consumers bear the cost. Fast forward and it was revealed (surprise, surprise) they were still often being read by meter readers in many places and there was nothing “smart” except the profits of the smart meter suppliers. They rebated us admitting they were not working. A few months ago they came around and replaced the transmission antennas. Still no words on anything "smart"related to the “smart” meters.

In Victoria only a small handful of the suppliers have implemented anything “smart”, even to just making it possible to download historic data about use. Their tailored time of use rates appear to be just another way that government has supported businesses to gouge customers because when people are awake and doing things their “smart” costs have gone way up because they have the audacity to use power when industry and everyone else is using it; but way way down while most of us sleep and don’t use it, to make the window dressing look good.

I have not tried to change suppliers. I am with Red, not the cheapest but for my pattern of use (spreadsheet analysis) they are on the lower end with easy to understand plans.


I am a very early adopter of roof top solar still locked in for another 15 years at 70c buyback and as such was forced to purchase a smart meter at the time even before they became compulsory in Vic. I don’t recall the actual install cost of the meter but i feel it was around $375 for that and the electrical inspection required to allow my system to connect to the grid.
I have not switched retailer since because of 2 important considerations on is the special tariff I have for peak and off peak power I purchase from the grid is also grandfathered and therefore not in a hurry to let it go and the power company I uses power from a renewable (hydro) source my personal choice to reduce my carbon footprint.


Similar to tndkemp, I’m in Vic and got solar in 2009. This was before the smart meter roll out and so had to get a smart meter installed (I think that was by my electricity distributor). I can’t remember if it cost me anything, if so, it wasn’t much.

I was with AGL at the time and have since switched to Momentum and now Powershop. I didn’t have any problems with either of those switches.

I like having the smart meter, I can look up my energy use on line and can see what I’ve used up to midnight of the previous day. It also tells me the time I used the electricity, so I can find out my peak/off-peak use and estimate the cost before the end of the month.


I live in NSW and am with Energy Australia. Approximately 5 years ago, they advised me that my meter was due for replacement and that they be replacing my old meter with a Smart Meter. As far as I remember there was no cost to me to having the meter replaced however I then received a letter informing me that I would now be on the new smart meter tariff. I worked my usage pattern and calculated that my bill would increase unless I did all my laundry, cooking etc. at midnight. So I contacted them and requested that they keep me on the original tariff which they did without question. It was a nice try on their behalf but I was quite annoyed with their approach. I have considered switching suppliers on several occasions but so far have not investigated if the new supplier would apply the Smart Meter tariff and if I could return to my old tariff if I wanted to switch back to Energy Australia at any time. I would be interested to hear others experiences on switching suppliers and also if people have made any savings by switching to a Smart Meter tariff.

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We live in Margaret River, Western Australia. We moved to a Western Power smart meter about six years ago. The installation cost was around $160. Overall it’s been a waste of time, money and effort. We are billed every two months, and the savings average arpprox $7 per month, sometimes less, very occasionally a little bit more. In winter, the peak tariff cuts in between 0700 and 1100, and again between 1700 and 2100, exactly at the times households are preparing meals and unavoidably using kettles, toasters, cooktops and microwaves etc, and probably heating some areas of the home. So you really can’t avoid paying for a large proportion of your usage at the maximum tariff. It does discourage us from using the dishwasher and washing machine until the off peak period between 2100 and 0700, and the booster on the solar hot water system is set to come on for an hour at 2100 and again at 0500. However this is only needed in winter when trees shade the panels. So overall it’s good for the electricity company but of little benefit to us.


I’m in SA. Not sure if mine is really a smart meter, it does not send readings at all; a reader still comes round. I paid around $300 for it. And that is fine with me; I also don’t get a bill now, in fact, I get a refund, and I have only the minimum kw - 1.5 - of solar. I get 52c per kw, but our system is different from Vics; AFAIK, it reads the whole and gives refunds on what is sold back to the grid only.
But SA is talking of installing smart meters now. I am thinking mine will not be changed.