Frequently asked questions

Got a question? We have the answers.

Smart Meters

  • What is a smart meter?

    Think of a smart meter as a virtual meter reader. It records the actual amount of electricity you use every half hour, and the data is sent to us once per day using similar technology to text messaging.

    This data transmission occurs for a very short period of time (around 1 second) during the middle of the night and occurs at a very low wattage.

    This is much lower than the average households use of cellphone or wifi networks.

  • Will Electric Kiwi ever estimate my electricity usage?

    Electric Kiwi collects your daily electricity usage information straight from your smart meter, so most of the time we’ll never need to estimate your electricity usage. This means your bill will always be accurate and you’ll never pay for more than what you actually used.

    On a rare occasion, there may be a communication failure between the smart meter at your property and the centralised location where we retrieve your usage data. In the unlikely event we can't retrieve the data by the time you are due to be invoiced, we calculate an estimate using a method approved by the New Zealand Electricity Authority.

    If you wish to find out more about estimates, please email us at

  • Does anyone need access to my property to read my meter?

    We don’t need access to your property to read your smart meter. Your actual usage will be sent to us each day electronically.

    The same as a text message.

  • Why does Electric Kiwi only take customers with smart meters?

    Electric Kiwi aims to offer its customers the lowest price electricity possible. The extra information provided by smart meters allows Electric Kiwi customers to choose 60 minutes of off-peak electricity to suit their lifestyle; they receive that one Hour of Power free each and every day.

  • I don’t have a smart meter but want to be an Electric Kiwi customer, what can I do?

    Currently around 75% of all meters in New Zealand are smart meters. The quickest way to find out whether you have a smart meter is to enter your address in the box on our homepage

    The electricity industry’s goal is to have all residential properties equipped with smart meters in the next few years.

    Upgrades are occurring continuously. But unfortunately until your meter is upgraded we won't be able to offer you the Electric Kiwi savings.

    Electric Kiwi is not able to upgrade meters as these are owned separately by metering companies. It is up to these companies when an upgrade will take place.

    Once your meter has been upgraded simply return to our website and we can switch you to Electric Kiwi. 

  • How do I know whether I have a smart meter?

    The quickest way to find out whether you have a smart meter is to enter your address in the box on our homepage. If you have a smart meter, we'll let you know.

    If you don't have a smart meter you'll see a message explaining you're unable to join Electric Kiwi until one is installed.