The Energy Savvy Families Program is designed to help Queensland families learn more about their energy use and manage their electricity bills.
The program offers eligible participants a digital meter at no extra cost and the convenience of monthly e-billing that makes it easier to budget.
It also includes access to valuable tools and information to understand and monitor how electricity is used at home, plus personalised support from a local community champion.
You can earn some rewards, save money on your electricity bill and become energy savvy at the same time!
Participants will receive:
There will be no cost for you to join the program.
Energy Savvy Families is available to selected households, by invitation only. Registrations for the current program round are now closed.
After signing up to the Energy Savvy Families Program, these are the next steps:
Participation in the program is entirely voluntary. You can leave at any time and it does not affect any of the services provided by the partner organisations.
Receiving communications such as email are a key part of the program. Unfortunately, if you unsubscribe from our communications, or if we can’t contact you, you will no longer be able to receive alerts. You are also giving up your opportunity to earn rewards. You will still receive your digital meter and have access to monthly billing.
If your contact details change, please let us know so we can keep you enrolled in the program.
The first participants will have received an invitation letter or email from September 2018. Invitations will continue to be sent out in phases until December 2019. You will need to sign up by the date specified in your invitation to secure a place in the program.
You can expect to engage with the program for around 10 weeks. Your welcome pack will have further details.
The Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy is partnering with CitySmart, Ergon Energy Retail, and Queensland Council of Social Service to bring you the Energy Savvy Families Program.
The program is by invitation only. It is being offered to eligible participants in Cairns, Hervey Bay, Rockhampton, Toowoomba and Townsville
If you are eligible, you will receive a letter from the Energy Savvy Families Program inviting you to participate. You can choose not to accept the offer.
The program is only available in the five locations, so you will not be able to participate at this time.
Everyone who has received an invitation is eligible. If you are uncertain, you can call Ergon Energy Retail on 13 10 46 to confirm if you are eligible.
You will have the chance to earn a range of great rewards to help you on your energy savvy journey, including one of 10 x $1,500 energy efficient appliance vouchers. Find out more about the different rewards you can earn here.
There are a few simple actions that will help you earn rewards, such as playing the Reduce Your Juice games for a certain amount of time, doing some energy quests or completing some short surveys within the timeframe.
Reduce Your Juice is fun mobile game-based program, showing you how to better manage your electricity usage and save money.
By playing the three mobile games and completing a series of simple power quests, you could also earn some great rewards such as one of ten $1,500 energy efficient appliance vouchers. Enjoy friendly competition with others and learn simple ways to reduce your energy use around the home.
The Reduce Your Juice games are available through the app which is downloadable on the Apple store or Google Play. You’ll need a suitable Apple or Android smartphone or tablet so you can download the app and play. In general, smartphones and tablets with Android OS 4 or more recent, and Apple devices with iOS 7 or more recent are all good to go. Check the settings on your device to make sure you are ready to roll.
You will receive your username and password via email when Reduce Your Juice is about to kick off. Didn’t receive one? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. If you are having trouble logging into the app you can click on the link underneath the login fields to reset your password.
Simply click the link underneath the login fields to reset your password. We will email you a link to reset your password.
Reduce Your Juice lasts for approximately 2 months. You will play the app games over 6 weeks, plus you will do some energy quests and answer some questions online before and after you play the games.
The Facebook page provides a place to share tips and tricks as you go through the program. You can share your experiences, engage with others in the program, see the top scores to beat, ask questions and provide feedback.
Digital meters record the electricity used in your home in 30-minute intervals and send this to Ergon Energy Retail at the end of each day. Digital meters help to make your life easier with:
The meter will be installed in your current meter box on your current switchboard, so you won’t notice much difference from your old meter. Most homes are suitable for a digital meter upgrade, regardless of whether you rent or own your home. If your premises are not suitable for a digital meter, we will let you know.
The HomeSmart Savvy portal allows you to see and use the data that the digital meter is collecting. You will be able to see your usage on a daily, weekly, monthly and yearly basis and you will be able to set budgets and alerts based on your usage.
The digital meter installation process will begin shortly after you have registered and occurs whilst you are participating your program. Installation may take several weeks, depending on workload and crew availability in your area.
You will receive a “Planned Interruption Notice” from Ergon Energy Retail which will let you know when your meter will be installed. Once the meter is installed, you will receive a welcome letter from Ergon Energy Retail and an email from HomeSmart Savvy with a link to set your password and login.
Ergon Energy Retail’s business partners will send out a licenced and experienced electrical crew to install the meter.
Yes, during the time window indicated on your “Planned Interruption Notice” from Ergon Energy Retail, you will need to provide free access to your meter box. Make sure pets are locked away/tied up, gates and the meter box are unlocked and that the area around the meter box isn’t obstructed by rubbish, equipment, boxes, plants etc.
Yes, your power will be interrupted during the installation process. This will be for a maximum of four hours but is usually much shorter.
You will receive a letter from Ergon Energy Retail that tells you that your site was unsuitable for a digital meter installation.
If you no longer wish to participate in the program before the meter is installed, you can call Ergon Energy Retail to opt out within 10 business days of registering. Once your meter has been installed, you can still opt out of the Energy Savvy Families program, but the digital meter will remain at the property.
No, you can participate fully as a renter or as an owner and don’t need the owner’s permission to have your meter changed.
There is no scientific evidence that the low level of RF EMR (radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation) emitted from digital meters causes any health effects. All digital meters installed in Queensland comply with electromagnetic exposure limits developed by the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency (ARPANSA). For more information visit the ARPANSA website https://www.arpansa.gov.au/.
Using Ergon Energy Retail’s HomeSmart Savvy portal, you can see your usage daily, weekly, monthly and yearly. You can set a monthly energy budget and receive SMS or email alerts when it looks like you’ll go over your budget, helping you and your family to make money-saving changes.
The HomeSmart Savvy portal is very easy to use. Once your digital meter is installed you’ll receive a welcome email with a link to set your password. From there it’s as easy as logging in and updating your settings. If your password isn’t working, you can use the ‘Forgot Password’ link on the login page.
The portal is set out in a simple and clear way. Once you’re logged in to the portal, you can access the HomeSmart User Guide located in the footer. Make sure you monitor your inbox so that you don’t miss the welcome email!
It works on all standard devices such as PCs, smartphones and tablets.
Many customers prefer monthly billing. It makes it easier to stay in control of your budget with smaller and more manageable payments. You will need to have 3G/4G mobile phone network coverage at your home to be eligible for monthly billing. You will automatically receive your bills as e-bills via email.
No, you are automatically signed up for monthly e-billing.
No, there are no extra charges for monthly e-billing.
You will automatically be signed up for e-billing when you join the program. If you have difficulties receiving e-bills via email, please contact Ergon on 13 10 46 to make alternative arrangements.
Queensland Council of Social Service has a local ‘champion’ in each region to support you with your participation in the program. They can help you with everything from reading your bill, to providing additional support and tips to reduce your electricity usage.
Click here to find the details of your local champion.
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