In Home Display FAQ

Common questions about your Powerpal

How much will Powerpal save me on my energy bills?

The exact savings you can achieve depend on how you currently use power in your home but Powerpal could help save between 5% and 15% off your power bill (or more!) when you act on the intelligent savings recommendations.

How does it work?

Powerpal uses an ultra-long range Bluetooth connection to send your energy data wirelessly from your electricity meter to an app on your smart phone.

Powerpal will connect to your smart phone automatically whenever it is within Bluetooth range of your electricity meter – this is typically between 50m and 100m depending on the construction of your home.

The app then analyses your energy data and makes intelligent recommendations on ways you can reduce your power bill.

How does Powerpal collect data from my meter?

Powerpal connects to an optical port on the front of your electricity meter.

I have an EDMI meter – what is my pulse rate?

Some meters from EDMI do not have a pulse rate written on the front of the meter, which may require a little trial and error to identify the correct pulse rate to enter into the Powerpal app. The trick is to use the “kettle test” to confirm the correct pulse rate.

To get started follow the installation guide to attach your Powerpal to Pulse 1 on your meter and enter 1000 imp/kWh into the app when prompted during setup

Once you are set up turn your kettle on – you should see the reported usage jump by around 2kW. If instead it only increases by around 200W you will need to adjust the app settings:

– Press the settings button at the top right of the app
– Select “Manage” under “Your Powerpal Hardware”
– Select “Change” under “Flashes per kWh”
– Enter 100

Repeat the kettle test and usage should now be reported correctly.

Can Powerpal be connected to more than one mobile device and can I see data when I’m away from home?

While only one device can be directly connected to Powerpal at a time (this is a limitation of the Bluetooth Low Energy protocol) all data is synced from the connected device to the cloud. This means it is possible to leave one device at home (such as a tablet) that is connected to your Powerpal and view your energy data on another device (such as your phone) while you are away from home via the cloud.

In order to set this up you can use the following process:

1) Turn Bluetooth off on all currently connected devices
2) Install the Powerpal app on the additional device and pair with your Powerpal
3) Turn Bluetooth back on for your other devices

When more than one device is in Bluetooth range of your Powerpal they will “fight” for the direct connection and the device that loses the fight will fetch its data from the cloud instead.

Note that in order to preserve the battery life on the directly connected device data is batched and sent to the cloud in intervals (every 1 minute if the app it running in the foreground, every 15 minutes if running in the background). So when viewing data from the cloud you may find it is slightly delayed compared to viewing on a directly connected device.

Does Powerpal work with the old dial meters?

Powerpal works with digital meters and cannot interface with the older “spinning disk” style meters.

If you have one of the old meter types without an optical port you can contact your energy retailer to ask for your meter to be upgraded – they are now legally required to complete the upgrade within 15 business days of your request.

If you buy your power from one of the “big 3” energy retailers (Origin, AGL or Energy Australia) there should be no charge for this upgrade to be completed.

Does Powerpal require an electrician for installation?

Powerpal connects optically to your electricity meter and requires no modifications to your electrical equipment which means usually it can be installed in just a few seconds without requiring an electrician call out.

Safety note: Take care any time you’re working near your meter box. Do not touch any wires or exposed terminals. Do not modify any electrical equipment.

If you are unsure about the installation process or not confident in your ability to install your Powerpal safely please arrange for a qualified electrician to handle the installation for you.

Does Powerpal work with solar?

Yes, Powerpal works great with solar!

The app shows the power you are importing from the grid and will show 0W of imported power when your solar array is fully powering your home. This is a great time to run any occasional appliances (like the washing machine or dishwasher) to soak up any spare solar energy, rather than exporting it to the grid, to maximise your solar benefits. It’s free to run your appliances at these times, so why not!

You can track the times when your home has spare solar energy available using the energy clock on the Powerpal dashboard – look for a “flat spot” in the middle of the day which shows the times when no energy was required from the grid to power your home.

Most solar inverters will report gross solar generation but do not provide consumption information. Powerpal completes the picture by showing the times when you are importing from the grid (or not) so you can match your appliance usage to when you have spare solar power available.

Please note that Powerpal does not report on solar energy exported to the grid as this is not available via the optical interface on the meter.

If real-time monitoring of your exported solar energy is a key requirement for your household then an alternative (electrician installed) product may be a better fit for your requirements – some good ones on the market are Solar Analytics, Carbon Track, Enphase or the Fronius Smart meter.

I live in a unit with a shared meter room – can I install Powerpal?

Smaller blocks of units with shared meter rooms are supported up to 2 storeys. We cannot guarantee that Powerpal’s bluetooth signal will reach through more than two concrete floors between your electricity meter and your home.

Please check with your strata manager for access to the meter room, which may require a key.

How accurate is Powerpal? Is it more accurate than clamp style monitors?

Powerpal is significantly more accurate than clamp style monitors!

As Powerpal transmits the data logged by your utility energy meter the usage data reported in the app is very accurate – our users typically report logged usage to be within 99% of utility meter reads.

What is the signal range of Powerpal?

Typical Powerpal range from the meter box to the phone for a freestanding home in an urban environment is around 100m (about double the range of a typical WiFi connection).

Smaller blocks of units with shared meter rooms are supported up to 2 storeys. We cannot guarantee that Powerpal’s bluetooth signal will reach through more than two concrete floors between your electricity meter and your home.

If we go on holidays for a week, will the week’s data be stored and sent to me when we get home?

Yes, Powerpal can store up to 60 days of data at the meter.

When you return from your holiday you can simply sync using the Powerpal app and all data logged while you were away from home will be available to view.

Will the device support OTA Firmware upgrade in case powerpal needs to fix bugs or enhance features?

Yes, Powerpal supports OTA firmware upgrade via the app.

Does Powerpal need batteries, what battery does it require and what is the operating time?

Powerpal comes fitted with high power batteries specifically designed for long life IoT applications and is rated to run continuously for 10+ years without user intervention under normal operating conditions.

One of the key design goals for Powerpal is that once you have it installed on your meter box you will never need to service it within its expected operating life.

Powerpal uses one of the most advanced IoT chipsets available on the market today combined with patented power optimising algorithms to achieve the stated battery lifetime.

The batteries in Powerpal are not user serviceable – please return your Powerpal to us for recycling once its batteries are exhausted or drop it off at any licensed E-waste processing facility.

I want to read real-time data, will this impact battery life and how often the data will be sent in this condition?

The battery in Powerpal is not impacted by the use of the real time data function.

Data is transmitted every 380ms from Powerpal to the mobile phone while they are connected, however the reaction time to a change in energy load will be set by the reaction speed of the utility meter.

Typically the usage reading in the app will update within 1-5 seconds of an appliance being switched on or off.

Can I see solar export Power?

Sorry, Powerpal cannot currently report export power as we are unable to access this from the interfaces available on the utility energy meter.

The solar use case for Powerpal is as a low cost way to help households adjust their usage patterns to self-consume as much of the solar energy they generate as possible, rather than exporting it to the grid, to maximise their solar benefits.

It does this without the need for an electrician to visit to install the product.

Does Powerpal work with all electricity meters?

Powerpal is compatible with all electricity meters in Victoria and any smart or digital meter in other states. Powerpal is unable to connect to homes with older “spinning disc” meters.

Is Powerpal Weatherproof?

Powerpal is designed to be weatherproof to IP65 standard (waterproof and dust tight) and all materials used are UV stable.

Limited Product Warranty

Powerpal warrants that your Powerpal-branded device shall be free from defects in materials and workmanship under normal use for a period of 12 months from the date of installation. During this guarantee period, Powerpal will either repair or replace, at its discretion, any defective product at no charge to the owner.

Our goods come with guarantees that cannot be excluded under the Australian Consumer Law. You are entitled to a replacement or refund for a major failure and compensation for any other reasonably foreseeable loss or damage. You are also entitled to have the goods repaired or replaced if the goods fail to be of acceptable quality and the failure does not amount to a major failure. 

To the extent permitted by law, this Powerpal guarantee excludes liability for consequential loss or any other loss or damage caused to property or person arising from any cause whatsoever.

It also excludes defects caused by the product not being used in accordance with the instructions, accidental damage, misuse, being tampered with by unauthorised persons, improper maintenance and normal wear and tear and does not cover the cost of claiming under warranty.