Energex play a critical role during the installation and operation of solar systems and as a supply authority have to apply an ever increasing amount of rules and regulations. In short though their role is to install or reprogram your meter for solar export. Up until that point you can use your solar system – but you cant export from it other than to wind back say an old spinning meter.
To get Energex on site the electrical contractor ie your installer issues a work request to Energex who then ask for B2B (business to business) order from your retailer. This process is to ensure that all 3 parties – the electrical contractor, the supply authority and the retailer all agree on and are prepared to go ahead with the connection. What most people dont know is that the process can be sped up by calling the retailer and giving them the Energex Work Request (EWR) number. Quite often it takes the retailer 3-14 days to issue a B2B and if details are wrong it can get stuck in the system forever. Generally speaking the electrical contrator cannot take care of this for you (other than to give you your EWR number) due to retailer privacy restrictions.
Energex on the Day
Energex will arrive and perform a basic inspection of your supply system. This process can be very smooth or it can be a nightmare leading to large and compulsory upgrade costs. Its important to note that your point of owner ship is the connection point on your home or property pole. If there is a property pole you own that too. Energex owns the service lines. This is important because if any part of your system other than your service line is not up to specification Energex can ask you to rectify the issue. These determinations are either based of AS3000 the Australian Wiring Rules or the EGCM the Energex Connection and Metering Manual. Its some 700 or so pages of conditions and makes excellent bed time reading.
Generally speaking Energex will be interested in exposed wiring of a single or non insulated nature, main switchboard circuit breakers and isolation links, general enclosure condition and technical points such as polarity.
Please note that for any solar based installation we do not recommend installing onto fuse ridden switchboards as the board will not last the life of the solar system.
Energex have an excellent guide on how to read a solar energy meter here.