How to Get a Temporary Power Supply Connection

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Written By Tristan Cameron

For any new buildings or major renovations on existing properties, electricity is usually connected once it’s completed. However, energy is required by many of the people working on the project, so how can that be possible?

Enter a temporary power supply connection. This is installed on the site and removed once the building is completed. It’s necessary but complicated, so it must be actioned early in the construction timetable.

Here’s our detailed explanation of how to get a temporary power supply connection.

What is a Temporary Power Supply?

So that construction can begin on a new building or a complete renovation, power needs to be available. As the main power won’t be connected until the building is completed, Australian energy companies can approve a temporary power supply to be connected. 

The temporary power is provided at a reduced level compared to the standard. It’s up to 63A for three phase (400V) or up to 100A for a single phase. This electricity can only be used for construction purposes, for any commercial or residential power supply and absolutely not for any leisure activities.

Your Steps as the Property Owner

You’ll need to collaborate with an Australian energy provider and an accredited service professional (ASP) like our level 2 electricians at North Shore Electricians. Here are the steps you’ll need to follow to start the process:

Choose Your Electricity Service Provider 

Each service provider is competing for your business. They understand the importance of approving a temporary power supply, which often leads to a full-time commitment. 

However, it pays to shop around; they may not all approve one in your area, and it’s important to compare pricing. Be prepared to answer a lot of questions about the project.

Engage Us

Once you’ve got approval from a service provider, that’s where we come in. We’ll come to the site and prepare a design contract and a preferred layout. We then need to submit that to the energy provider for final signoff.

We’ll provide you with a quote, breaking down the sections for easier understanding. Then, we wait for approval before beginning the project.

How We Connect a Temporary Power Supply

There’s a lot of work involved and a level 2 electrician needs to complete it. Our team is experienced with connecting temporary power supplies, so you can feel confident that the project will be completed correctly.

Prepare the Area

We need to start with the excavation of the land. The next decision is where to place the private power pole. This would have already been added to the initial design map. It will be somewhere that doesn’t block access. 

Complete the Project in a Specific Way

There are a number of things that we need to action in the following order:

  1. The power pole goes in first 
  2. The electricity box is installed 
  3. The electricity meter is added
  4. We connect the wires from the mains supply by overhead cable to the power pole and down into the electricity box
  5. We’ll finish off with a thorough safety inspection to ensure the power supply is working at its optimum 

What Does it Cost to Connect a Temporary Power Supply?

As we stated, it’s a considerable project requiring the expertise of a level 2 electrician, and they charge more than a standard one. 

The price of the connection is impacted by several factors:

  • the distance the property is from the mains supply
  • the level of excavation required
  • if any extras need to be added to the temporary switchboard, like safety switches and powerpoints.

A temporary power supply connection can cost anywhere from $1,500 up to $4,000, so be sure to factor that into the construction budget.

What Happens After the Building is Complete?

You must arrange for the temporary power supply to be removed once the construction project ends and connect a permanent one. 

You have a couple of decisions to make prior to the job finalising: 

  • Staying with the same energy provider involves less work and, as a result, less cost, but you may decide to move to another one
  • Will you keep the private power pole; if not, it must be taken down.

One of our level 2 electricians will remove the power pole and temporary electricity box and relocate the electricity meter if required. 

Plan Your Temporary Power Supply Well in Advance

As you’ve seen, connecting a temporary power supply is a massive task involving several steps, including jumping through some hoops when dealing with energy providers. Plan for this at the early stages of the preparation for the entire building project. 

Early preparation will ensure power is available at the site well before building commences. Contact one of our team today to discuss the connection of a temporary power supply.

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