Smart meters are NOT compulsory in NZ
It is NOT compulsory to have a “smart” or “advanced” meter” and a growing number of people have managed to get “smart meters” removed after they have been installed. This may not always be easy, but it can be done.
One of the purposes of this site is to share successful ideas to help people get rid of their “smart” meter with a minimum of fuss and bother.
(This being said, in some cases, if a “smart” meter has been installed, it may not be possible to get it removed without changing electricity retailers so if you do not have one, you may wish to take steps to prevent an unwanted “smart meter” installation; see this link: http://www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz/how-to-avoid-getting-a-smart-meter/.)
How to get updates on the smart meter issue for NZ
If you are interested in the smart meter issue, please sign up for the email list at www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz as this will allow you receive updates on the smart meter situation in NZ. This link also includes a search facility to allow you to search the website for topics of interest.
There is now also a Facebook page you can like or follow to get information:
Methods people have used to get rid of a smart meter
The following ideas have been successful for other people so you may also find that they work for you.
1) Call your electricity company and insist that they remove the “smart meter”.
If you are completely insistent in your communications with your electricity company. You may need to make a number of calls until you reach someone who takes your concerns seriously , the company may respect your wishes. (In some cases, it may be helpful to tell your electricity company that you will change to another company if the company does not value your business!)
NB: If your electricity company is helpful, please email through the site Contact form so we know about this and can advise others.
2) If your current electricity company refuses to remove your smart meter and replace it with an analogue meter or digital meter that is not a smart meter, you may need consider changing electricity companies to a company that will replace it.
At present there appear to be several options. These options are listed in alphabetical order, out of fairness to the companies.
Please also note that some companies may have Terms and Conditions in their standard contracts stating that customers must agree to a smart meter so you would be wise to read T&Cs for any company that interests you and make it clear to the company that you do not accept any such terms.
NB: The site coordinator has no financial interest in any electricity company.
1) Contact Energy
Contact Energy has reportedly made new non-smart meters available to its customers.
One customer reports on his personal dealings with Contact which resulted in his being offered a new Actaris SMO Ace 100 meter.
Technical details about the meter may be read at this link http://www.measurement.gov.au/Publications/CertificateOfApproval/OtherInstruments/Electricity_utility_Meters/Documents/14-2-18.pdf while you can read the post here: http://smartmeterpowerstruggle.wordpress.com/2012/08/21/new-analogues-are-an-option-in-nz/
Please note that although the Actaris meter still has an analogue display, it is NOT a traditional electromechanical (Ferraris) meter, but may contain a switch mode power supply, so may produce dirty electricity.
According to recent reports (personal communications) Contact Energy has offered to some of its customers to remove the transmission chip from “smart meters” that have already been installed. This is apparently not an option with every model of “smart meter” but can be done with at least one model of “smart meter”. This is not a perfect solution (as the meters may still emit “dirty electricity”) but it should stop the meter emitting microwave radiation.
(For a comparison between a smart meter with its chip/modem/comms unit removed and a Ferraris meter, please see this link: http://www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz/government-and-electricity-industry-positions/comparing-analogue-ferraris-meters-with-smart-meters-which-have-had-the-modem-removed/
For an example of a case where Contact was helpful to a family, please see this link: http://www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz/latest-news/headaches-disappear-after-smart-meter-replaced/
2) Energy Direct
An initial report received on January 14, 2014 indicates that Energy Direct has agreed to remove a “smart meter” from the home of one of its customers in Wellington. (No more recent feedback has been received regarding this company.)
3) Grey Power Electricity
Grey Power Electricity was reported in early 2018 to have agreed to remove the modem from a smart meter, thereby prevcnting it from producing pulses of microwave radiation.)
(Grey Power Electricity is a division of Pulse Energy for members of Grey Power, an organisation that advocates for people aged 50 years and older.)
Meridian has been reported to respect customers’ decisions not to have a smart meter installed. (No information is available about whether or not the company removes smart meters.)
4) Nova Energy
This company has been reported to be helpful by many people. please see this post for an example:
An Aucklander who wanted to get rid of a “smart meter” recently found that Powershop was prepared to put in a new electronic non-smart meter and did this job quickly and efficiently.
It is not yet clear whether Powershop will do this in all areas of NZ; it may depend upon what company owns the electricity meter.
Trust Power has been reported to www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz as having helped some customers who had an existing “smart meter” to have the meter replaced with an analogue meter.
More recent feedback (2017) from a happy customer in Auckland was that TrustPower removed an Elster gREX smart meter which had been installed by the previous retailer. This type of smart meter does not have a removable communications package and can create significant pulses of microwave radiofrequency radiation. (This post http://www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz/latest-news/smart-meter-emissions-graph/ gives some details.)
Trust Power arranged for another type of smart meter to installed which has a modem that can be disconnected, thereby preventing the meter from creating pulses of microwave radiofrequency radiation. (You can learn more about this option by clicking HERE.)
* Please email through the Contact form at this link http://www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz/contact-us/ if you have information about any other companies that are willing to remove customers’ “smart meters” and replace them with analogue (electromechnical or Ferraris) meters so that we can share this information on the site.
Information to help you change power companies, if necessary:
Some electricity retailers in NZ seem to prefer losing customers rather than respecting customers’ rational decisions not to have a smart meter.
If you want to change your electricity retailer the websites below provide a source of information about different comapnies.
The following website (supported by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs) allows you to compare prices offered by various companies: http://www.powerswitch.org.nz/powerswitch
The site http://www.whatsmynumber.org.nz/FindYourNumber (another NZ government site that includes a service in which you can estimate possible savings from changing electricity companies.)
This link on the website gives an alphabetised list of electricity companies and their contact details, including email addresses.
The private companies www.switchme.co.nz and http://youselect.co.nz/ also offers a similar service. (This link on http://youselect.co.nz/energy_suppliers.php allows you see which companies supply electricity in your area.)
If neither of these ideas work for you, please email through the Contact for and we will do our best to help.
(NB: Please keep copies of all correspondence so that if there are companies that are treating their customers with particular disrespect, this can be documented.)
If your reason for changing companies is to avoid a “smart meter” installation or is to get a “smart meter” removed, it is prudent to get a written agreement with the company that a “smart meter” rather rely on a verbal assurance from a company staff member.
Please take the time to warn your family, friends, colleagues etc NOW about the “smart meters” issue as some people have had considerable trouble getting their “smart meter” removed and it is much easier to prevent its installation than to get rid of it once it is installed.
While all information on this site has been fact checked carefully, www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz assumes no responsibility for any errors or omissions. Information about specific companies has been collated from articles in the media and other publicly available sources, as well as through communications with staff of respective companies and communications received from members of the public.
Inclusion of links to other websites does not constitute endorsement of that website, organisation or company, nor imply that the site or company endorses www.stopsmartmeters.org.nz Readers are urged to do their own due diligence before engaging any company to provide electricity or any other product or service.
Site users are encouraged to do further reading on the issue of “smart meters” rather than relying on this site as a sole source of information and to consult with someone who has relevant technical and/or medical expertise if they are concerned that their health is being adversely affected by exposure to electromagnetic radiation.