Home / FAQs / Jargon buster

Jargon buster

A tariff is a pricing structure (in the traditional power retailer sense), determined by the meter set up you have. There are many different names for the various tariffs across the industry. But they will normally indicate a time of use (e.g. Day and Night) or control (e.g. Uncontrolled, Anytime, Economy). Your pricing structure will remain the same if you switch to Powershop.
Controlled meters measure power use for appliances (usually hot water heating) which the local network company is able to switch off for short periods, for example when the demand on their network is high, or when faults or emergencies happen on their network. Usually there is a discounted rate given by the lines charges for allowing this, which is passed on to the customer. Uncontrolled metering simply means that the local network company has no way of ‘controlling’ or switching off appliances or use measured by that meter.
Peak / off-peak metering involves two separate meters (or two registers on one meter), one of which measures ‘peak’ usage, and one of which measures ‘off-peak’ usage. This is usually beneficial as it allows retailers to measure (and charge lower rates for) your night usage.
Smart meters differ from current ‘basic’ meters by being able to measure consumption accurately across very small time periods (down to 1/2 hours) in the one meter. They also have two-way communication abilities to enable remote meter reading, and to enable instructions to be sent to the meter e.g. to remotely disconnect a property (although this functionality is not yet active). If you don't have a smart meter, we can arrange an installation for free in most cases. Fill out the form here.
It's the National Electricity Market (NEM). This is a regulated market and is operated by the Australian Energy Market Operator. Generators sell their power into this market and retailers and large industrial users buy their power directly from it. For more information see the AEMO website.
Your property has a unique National Metering Identifier (NMI) number identifying it on the Australian electricity network. You can find this on your current power bill somewhere under the invoice number. It consists of 10 digits – mostly numbers but it may contain a few letters.
The network companies (also known as distributors) own and look after the power lines that transmit the electricity from the national grid to your property. There are many different network companies in Australia although each company operates a monopoly in its given area.