This page covers frequently asked questions about our wireless energy monitors. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, please submit a question at the bottom of this page.
Do they work with 3 phase power?
- EW4008 and EW4009 – to measure three-phase power you need a total of three sensor clamps. The monitors ship with one sensor clamp per transmitter. You can buy two extra clamps on the product sale page.
- EW4030 – this monitor has one LED sensor. It will report the usage from one smart or digital electricity meter (whether it’s single or three phase meter). If you have multiple meters, this product may not be suitable for you.
Is the display screen portable?
- EW4008 and EW4009 – these monitors can be mains powered (plugged in at one location) or run off the supplied batteries (portable). Please Note: battery power will only last for a few days. Remove the batteries when running off mains power, otherwise they will go flat and the screen will go blank.
- EW4030 – this monitor is fully battery powered (and battery life is over 1 year) – no mains plug required.
Can I use the energy monitor to look at individual appliance usage?
Yes, to some extent. You do this by observing the difference in consumption when the appliance is turned on and off. The screen updates every 6 seconds (EW4008 and EW4009) or 30 seconds (EW4030).
Can I download the data?
EW4008 / EW4009 – Yes. You will need to buy a USB Data Cable from the energy monitor page. To download the driver and software for the monitors please refer to these pages:
EW4030 – No data download available.
What data is available?
The EW4008 and EW4009 store 40 days of kWh/day and two years of kWh/month on board the monitor. You can extract more detailed data (minute-to-minute) if you connect your computer to the energy monitor and leave it connected with the software running.
Some customers have gone an extra step and then linked this data to on-line programs like PV Bean Counter. The chart below is from an installation of an EW4009 Solar Energy Monitor. It shows household consumption (red line) and solar PV production (green line) although the installation in this particular case does conflate solar and usage during daylight hours.
Can I enter three time-of-use tariffs from my smart meter?
Yes. These monitors can have three tariffs programmed into them (see manual for details).
Bear in mind that no energy monitor on the market can account for the true complexity of a three tariff system. This is because these tariffs change depending on what time it is, the day of the week and whether it is a public holiday (i.e. the monitor would need a complete calendar in it).
How far will the transmitter signal travel?
We have tested the signal to about 30 metres. It has been designed to travel through metal meter boxes and walls to that it can easily reach inside your home.
If necessary, extending the range further may be as simple as removing the cover of the transmitter and making the red antenna wire external to the plastic housing (see below). Here’s a blog post from someone who increased the range of a similar energy monitor product.
My meter box is over 30 metres away, can I still use the energy monitor?
Yes. You should be able to clamp over the incoming supply cable before it gets split off into individual circuits at your household switchboard. We recommend using an electrician to do this as it is often ‘behind the board’. If you have a main fuse at your switchboard, you may be able to do this yourself.
What size are the sensor clamps?
EW4008 & EW4009 – The internal diameter of the sensor clamp is 10mm (black clamp).
We also have some units with 25mm (red clamp) available. Please contact us if you require this larger size.
Can I buy additional transmitters to monitor multiple circuits?
For example: one Clamp/Transmitter unit on the Hot Water Service circuit and another Clamp/Transmitter unit on another circuit such as the air conditioner?
Yes. The EW4008 can accept data in this way for up to 15 separate channels. The EW4009 can do the same for up to 5 channels. Please Note: Only the EW4008 can have all additional channels of data accessed via its software. The EW4009 software only accesses the main channels ‘Solar’ and ‘House.’
To order additional transmitter units please contact us by phone or email as you cannot buy individual additional transmitters directly off the website.
Can I monitor my solar power production using this monitor?
Yes. Make sure you order the Solar EW4009 model to do this. Please note that you will most likely require the assistance of an electrician to make sure you clamp the sensor over the correct cables.
This is a simplified diagram of how it works:
To successfully use this monitor you will need to be able to completely isolate your ‘household consumption’ from ‘solar production’ at your meter board. This is an example of how the unit can be installed:
- The “HOUSE” sensor/transmitter should be installed on the consumption only side of the main power switch at your meter board. If this can be done, it will only pick up your consumption – it doesn’t matter whether that consumption is being supplied by the solar panels or the grid.
- Next, the “SOLAR” sensor/transmitter is installed on the AC ‘output’ side of the inverter. It will measure solar PV production.
- Finally, the display screen calculates a NET value of the above readings and will show you the approximate amount of power being exported to or imported from the grid.
Can I monitor solar power production from 2 inverters?
The solar monitor only allows for one channel of solar data, so you would need to be able to capture the power from both inverters at one spot on your electricity board (eg. where they go into the main switch).
My solar energy monitor is reading ~50 watts over night. What is this?
Your solar inverter will draw a small amount of power over night in standby mode. Unfortunately, what happens with these monitors is they pick up this current as production (because they can’t sense direction) and report the wattage too high. They measure VA’s but report watts.
This is the nature of CT current sensor clamps and how they work (ie. you would have a similar problem with any wireless energy monitor of this sort).
Will I need an electrician to install the meter? (EW4030)
No, all you need to do is mount the LED sensor on the front of your smart or digital meter inside your meter box. Adhesive stickers are included in the kit for this purpose. Here are some example installation photos:
Does it work with solar? (EW4030)
When connected to a solar system (based on net metering) during the day when the solar is system is generating more power than is used in the house the display will show zero. If you use more power than is generated then the display will only show the consumption over and above the power level generated from your solar system.
An example is that if your system generated 2kw and you were using 2.4kw in the house the display will only show 400 watts as this is the amount you will be drawing from the grid (and paying for). The reason for this is that when power is flowing back into the grid the LED light on the meter stops flashing and as a result the sensor unit will record a zero power reading.
See also our Watts Clever Solar Energy Monitor EW4009.
What does the bar chart and “0, -1, -2, -3, -4″ mean on the display screen? (EW4030)
The EW4030 allows you to scroll through recent cost and consumption history on the screen.
The time periods available are Hour, Day, Week, and Month. When ‘Hour’ is selected and the square brackets are around the 0, data will show for the current hour’s energy consumption. [ -1 ] means last hour. [-2] means two hours ago, and so on.
The bar chart underneath these numbers shows the trend in consumption over the time period selected.