What is off peak electricity?
What is off-peak electricity?
Off-peak refers to lower, discounted electricity prices during specific times. Off-peak times are generally when residential homes and businesses use less electricity. Off-peak times will vary depending on your location and meter type, but typically are at night and/or weekends.
Electricity used in busy peak times can place a strain on Australia’s electricity networks. That’s why off-peak electricity is charged at a cheaper price, to encourage people to use their electricity outside these busy times.
Off-peak electricity can also refer to electricity being used by a stand-alone appliance, like an electric hot water service on a dedicated circuit. This appliance is metered separately and can be billed on off-peak rates.
Plans available which have off-peak rates
All of our electricity plans are available for off-peak meters. Find out about our electricity plans.
Victorian smart meter customers who are remotely read can now sign up to a new type of electricity plan called ‘flexible pricing’. These new plans will mean you pay different prices, depending on the time of day and day of week that you use your electricity. Find out more at the Department of Primary Industries website.
Find out if you’re eligible for off-peak rates
Being eligible for off-peak electricity prices depends on:
- The type of meter you have at your home or business; and
- The way your meter is configured.
The following table lists the most common meter types and their eligibility for off peak prices.
|Meter configuration||Eligible for off-peak|
Time of Use (interval)
Time of Use (interval) meters can charge at three prices: peak, off-peak and shoulder
Two rate meters are able to charge at two prices: peak and off-peak.
Single rate meters charge at one single price and can’t offer off-peak electricity.
Dedicated circuit can charge a dedicated appliance (eg. hot water or underfloor heating) on off-peak prices
Understanding your meter configuration
If you’re unsure of your meter configuration you can contact us and one of our helpful consultants will advise you. If you’re an EnergyAustralia customer you can also check your bill under the ‘current charges’ section to see if you’re already on off-peak electricity pricing.
Changing your meter configuration for off-peak rates
If you’re in Victoria and have a smart meter installed at your home, you can request your meter configuration to be changed to be eligible for off-peak rates. For more information on how you can change your meter configuration and take advantage of off-peak rates, call us.
Smart meters and off-peak rates
Not all smart meters are configured to measure off-peak electricity. For more information on smart meters see our smart meters FAQ page.
Shoulder rates explained
Shoulder rates are currently applicable to Time of Use meters in New South Wales and Victoria. Shoulder rates are charged during shoulder times which sit between peak and off-peak times.
Using off-peak times to reduce your electricity bills
There are many ways to save electricity with off-peak rates. You can save money by shifting your electricity use to off-peak times. Consider running appliances like dishwashers, washing machines and clothes dryers at off-peak times. Many appliances now have timers and delay start features; so you can control your electricity usage and save money. For more information see our energy saving ideas.