When you want to connect your home, business or other premises to the electricity distribution network, or get more electricity from the distribution network than is possible at the moment, or need to extend the network to reach your premises, you need a suitably qualified person to do the work.
In NSW, basic (types 5 and 6) meters are managed by the distribution networks, with other meter providers responsible for smart (types 1 to 4) meters. NSW also has a contestable work scheme, where only an appropriately qualified accredited service provider (ASP) acting on behalf of the distributor can install basic meters.
Smart meter reforms
What will change
The Electricity Supply Amendment (Advanced Meters) Act 2016 has come into effect from 1 July 2016. The Act supports the NSW Government to facilitate the voluntary, market-led rollout of smart meters in NSW rollout of smart meters in NSW.
A key change in the Act is that, going forward when meters are changed, they will be owned by metering providers and not by distribution networks. This means that the ASP scheme no longer covers meter installation work and is not part of the NSW contestable work scheme.
However, during the interim period between 1 July 2016 and 1 December 2017, the installation of basic meters will remain restricted to Level 2 ASPs. Only the installation of smart meters has been opened up to non-ASP electricians during this time and only appropriately qualified, trained and licensed electricians can install smart meters. Metering providers can engage appropriately qualified electricians to replace basic meters with smart meters, but they cannot install basic meters.
In this interim period, a customer can still choose to have a basic meter installed, which would require a Level 2 ASP. After December 2017, no more basic meters will be installed and any meter changes of those types will have to be replaced with a smart meter in accordance with National Electricity Rules .
The Act requires that any person engaged to install smart meters must be appropriately trained, including with respect to de-energisation and re-energisation of electrical installations. The exact nature of this training will be determined by each metering provider, but it has to comply with minimum standards set out in the department's Code for safe installation of direct-connected whole current electricity metering in NSW (Minimum requirement for safety management systems of retailers and metering providers) July 2016 (384 KB PDF).
Metering providers are also required to lodge appropriate safety management systems with NSW Fair Trading.
Contacts for meter installation
When a customer chooses to have a smart meter installed, they will either contact their electricity retailer or will be contacted by them, and the retailer will arrange the installation.
Retailers will engage metering providers, who in turn will arrange for an appropriately qualified electrician to complete the metering works. The retailer is the main contact for the customer.
This means that retailers and metering providers are responsible for the installation, maintenance and replacement of meters. Appropriately qualified electricians and ASPs can only do smart metering work after being contracted by a metering provider to do that work, and must comply with the metering provider’s safety management system. NSW workplace safety legislation requires that only an ASP or the distribution network service provider can carry out live work. This has not changed. The NSW Government is committed to upholding workplace health and safety.
For further information on compliance with smart meter technical and safety standards, refer to the NSW Fair Trading website.
The ASP Scheme Rules were revised in August 2016 to:
- better align them with the Act;
- eliminate the current duplication for ASPs who apply for multiple levels of accreditation; and
- modernization to reflect the developing Contestable Works market, including less prescriptive insurance requirements, clarification of grading criteria, and closer alignment of competency requirements with the Australian Qualifications Framework.
The mapping table below shows the equivalent accreditation levels under the former ASP Scheme Rules and the new ASP Scheme Rules. Those who were accredited under the previous classes in Column 1 are now accredited under their equivalent, new class of accreditation in Column 2.Generally, existing ASPs need not take any action until their next renewal, regrade or staff changes are required. At that time, please use the application forms available below.
Old categories (Pre Aug 2016)
Current class of accreditation
Level 1 Overhead
|Class 1A Overhead|
|Level 1 Underground|
Class 1B Underground paper lead and polymeric
Level 1 Underground - Poly only
Class 1C Underground polymeric only
Level 2 ASP Category 1
Class 2A Disconnect and reconnect
Level 2 ASP Category 2
Class 2B Work on underground service conductors
Level 2 ASP Category 3
Class 2C Work on overhead service conductors.
Level 2 ASP Category 4
Class 2D Installing metering for meter types 5 to 6
Level 3 ASP
Class 3A Design – Overhead systems
Class 3B Design – Underground systems
Contestability may also be extended to other capital works requested by and funded by individuals or organisations to suit site developments (such as asset relocations), or required as a result of damage caused by others.
Customers can use the lists of ASPs at the links below. There are separate lists for ASPs who are accredited to perform different types of connection services.
Level 1 - Construction of network assets
You will need a Level 1 ASP to extend the overhead or underground network to reach your property, or if you require the capacity of the existing network (the amount of electricity it can safely supply) to be increased. This may include high and low voltage works, substations and basic metering.
Level 2 - Service work/connection services
You will need a Level 2 ASP to perform work closer to your premises such as:
- disconnecting your premises from the network (class 2A)
- installing or repairing an underground service line to connect your premises to the electricity network (class 2B)
- installing or repairing an overhead service line to connect your premises to the electricity network (class 2C) and installing a basic electricity meter (class 2D)
The decision to apply to become, or renew, Level 2 accreditation is for each individual ASP or potential ASP to make.
Only the installation of smart meters has been affected by the Act during the interim period of 1 July 2016 to December 2017.
The Act does not affect work for Level 2 categories 1, 2 and 3. If you want to do work in these categories you must be accredited accordingly as an ASP.
If you want to continue with basic metering work between now and December 2017, you will need to maintain or receive Level 2 accreditation, including class 2D.
If you want to continue with work associated with equipment such as load control receivers, you will need to maintain or receive Level 2 accreditation, including class 2D. Dedicated load control equipment remains the responsibility of the distribution network service provider and the requirement for class 2D accreditation remains in place after December 2017.
Even though basic metering will no longer exist for new or replacement installations past this date, the qualifications and skills remain valid and may help prepare you to become a subcontractor to metering providers and distribution networks.
If you want to be accredited as a Level 2 ASP, more information on the required competencies is contained in the application form.
Level 3 - Design of network assets
You will need a Level 3 ASP to design distribution network assets, including separate classes for underground or overhead.
Find an Accredited Service Provider (ASP)
- List of Level 1 Accredited Service Providers (PDF 293.94 KB)
- List of Level 2 Accredited Service Providers (PDF 1.63 MB)
- List of Level 3 Accredited Service Providers (PDF 234.74 KB)
Apply for accreditation
See below application form and scheme rules for all levels.
- ASP Application and scheme rules for accreditation (PDF 384 KB)
Registration of a new employee or sub-contractor
Employees and sub-contractors of Level 1 and Level 2 ASPs must be appropriately qualified and registered with the Scheme before seeking authorisation from the local electricity distributor to work on or near the electricity network. Employees and sub-contractors must also receive training in the safety and operating procedures of the local electricity distributor. Cancellation of authorisation by an electricity distributor may result in cancellation of accreditation under this scheme.
To register employees or sub-contractors, Level 1 and Level 2 ASPs must complete the following form.
- Level 1 ASP Registration to be authorised by a distributor form (PDF 176.80 KB)
- Level 2 ASP Registration to be authorised by a distributor form (PDF 70.73 KB)
Change of accreditation details
Have any of your details changed? If so please complete the appropriate forms below.
If your ABN has changed you will need to complete a new application.
- Change of details form (PDF 124 KB)
Apply to upgrade your accreditation
To apply for a review of grading for Level 1 and Level 2 see below forms. Please note there are no regrades for Level 3 Accreditation.
Information about training courses in Level 2 ASP competencies can be obtained from:
- 13 77 88
- (02) 9842 8636