How Does Electricity Get
to My House?
As effortless as it may seem when light appears after flicking on a switch or heat dissipates after turning on an electric heater, the work that goes on ‘behind the scenes’ to get the power to where you use it is actually quite extensive! To better understand the process behind getting power to where you need it in your home, check out the step-by-step outline below:
- Generating Electricity in New Zealand
The majority of New Zealand’s electricity generation comes from renewable sources. Although most is generated from hydro-electric stations, some electricity is also produced from gas, geothermal, coal, wind, diesel and solar.
- Hitting the Wholesale Market
The wholesale market is where electricity retailers buy their power from. Every half hour, prices are calculated to be sold on the wholesale market. These prices can vary widely depending on supply and demand.
- Transmitting the Power
Transpower, which owns and operates New Zealand’s national transportation grid, transmits the power from where it is generated to the local transmission grid. This electricity is transmitted at high voltages – up to 220,000 volts! Not all industrial sites get their power this way; some of the larger ones connect directly to the national grid.
- Distributing the Power to Your Home
Using overhead wires and underground cables, the power is delivered to homes and businesses using local distribution networks that are connected to the national transmission grid.
- Buying from the Retail Market
Since New Zealand has a competitive retail market for power suppliers, consumers are given the choice to buy their electricity from various companies. There are a wide range of retailers and electricity plans available to choose from, depending on what’s available where you live. To get the best rate possible, consumers are advised to check out all their options prior to committing to a certain retailer.
- At Your Home
The electricity meter at your home records the amount of electricity used, so consumers can be billed accordingly.
Lower Your Energy Costs!
Now that you understand the process behind getting the energy to your home, are you interested in learning how to lower your energy costs? Switchme is New Zealand’s largest non-government funded energy switching site. By processing energy comparisons and giving free, independent advice, we help customers get a better deal on their energy bill. Contact us today to learn how you, too, can save money on your energy costs!