When Does Sub-metering Make Sense?
The majority of Australian businesses are operating in the dark when it comes to understanding their energy consumption. If they’re lucky, their retailer provides them with a portal where they can see their usage over the month visualised in charts but for a large building, seeing one figure for consumption is not very helpful. Want to know how much your HVAC system used last month? There’s no way to tell from looking at aggregate consumption figures. To zoom in, you need submetering.
What Is Sub-metering?
Submetering involves installing extra electricity meters around your site. For example, at a school, you might want to put sub meters in these locations:
- in the central HVAC room
- connected to the lighting circuit
- in the aquatic center
- in the multi-purpose hall
- in the metalwork classroom
- anywhere else that may have a high load
When Does It Makes Sense?
A sub-metering project is successful when you can read your electricity bill and know precisely what equipment contributed to the big number at the bottom.
If you’re running a small cafe without any major equipment, you probably don’t need submetering. You’d get a similar level of visibility by just plugging in a consumer-grade power monitoring device. When you start dealing with high voltage equipment that doesn’t just plug into the wall socket, then you need to level up and use a submetering solution.
On a large site, you’ll want to know how much power the HVAC system, lighting and other major equipment is drawing. Having granular data will help you to identify conflicts between heating and cooling systems, determine if equipment is following your operational hours and drill down on which piece of equipment is causing the consumption spike at 2AM.
Monitoring Tenant Consumption
If you’re subletting space (e.g. commercial office buildings or shopping centres), you should be able to charge tenants a fair price for the electricity they consume. Submetering will give you that visibility and you can even use the data to automatically send bills to your tenants.
Find Out More:
To find out whether submetering could be a fit for your business, get in touch with the team at EnergyLink. We can provide tailored electricity and water submetering and tenant billing solutions.