Coolsaver Program Central Coast and Lake Macquarie

We are pleased to publish the CoolSaver Interim Report dated March 2017.  This report releases results of the CoolSaver trials so far.  

What is Ausgrid CoolSaver?

CoolSaver is an Ausgrid initiative to partner with customers in managing your electricity supply more efficiently for the benefit of the electricity network and the wider community.  The trial will help lower the energy your air conditioner uses during peak periods. It works by activating the air conditioner’s in-built power saving modes when the electricity network is experiencing high demand.   

Why is Ausgrid trialing CoolSaver?

Demand for electricity in many areas will peak on hot summer days when homes and businesses use high energy appliances like air conditioners at the same time.  This is often only 20 to 40 hours per year and so the extra network infrastructure needed to meet this demand is mostly unused for the rest of the time.  That’s not very efficient.  By partnering with our customers to reduce electricity use on peak demand days, we can make our network more efficient and help keep electricity prices down for all customers in future.

How does Ausgrid CoolSaver work?

The trial involved the installation of a signal receiver on participants air conditioner by a qualified technician. This enabled Ausgrid to remotely activate their air conditioner’s in-built power saving modes usually for a period of four hours but no more than six hours on a maximum of eight days in summer when the electricity network is experiencing high demand. The technology is designed to be ‘set and forget’.  Participants electricity meter and rates will not change and they did not need to contact your retailer to participate.

How did participants earn rewards?

Central Coast and Lake Macquarie participants who signed up for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 summer trial periods, received a $160 gift card once we installed the receiver on the outdoor unit of your air conditioner.  For each of the 2013/14 and 2014/15 summer periods, they also received a summer reward of $120 for each summer period, when they allowed us to remotely activate their air conditioner’s power saving mode.  Eligible participants had the choice of either a Coles Group & Myer gift card or a Woolworths ‘Wish’ gift card for their rewards. Participants who continued in the trial for 2015-16 received summer rewards of either $50 for air conditioners under 10kW or $100 for air conditioners 10kW and over. 
We have extended the Central Coast and Lake Macquarie trials for a final season this summer 2016-17 which ends on 31 March 2017. Participants who continue to the end of this season will receive summer rewards of $50 or $100 depending on the size of their unit as per previous seasons. 

Who participated?

This trial is now closed for new participants.  Existing participants had to own their own home, live in the trial areas of Central Coast and Lake Macquarie and have a newer model split system or ducted air conditioner that we could retrofit with a receiver device.  

Where are the trial areas?

The trial is in selected suburbs in two separate areas of the Ausgrid network. The Lake Macquarie trial area consists of 7 adjacent suburbs around the Cardiff and Mount Hutton zone substations, and the Central Coast trial area consists of 8 adjacent suburbs around the Charmhaven zone substation. The trial suburbs include:

Lake Macquarie trial areaCentral Coast trial area
Cardiff     Blue Haven  
Cardiff South San Remo  
Eleebana Charmhaven 
Lakelands  Gorokan  
Macquarie Hills Hamlyn Terrace
Mount Hutton   Kanwal  
Warners Bay Lake Haven