Power Factor Correction – Energex territory


On 1 July 2015, Energex is changing how network tariffs for some large customers are calculated. As a result, customers in South-East Queensland using between 100 and 4,000 MWh per year may see large cost increases if they have a poor power factor.

Power factor is the relationship between real power flowing to your load and the apparent power in the circuit; and is a measure of how efficiently energy is being used.

The beer analogy is often used to explain power factor. The liquid part of the beer is the real power that your electrical equipment uses to achieve its task (measured in kW). The frothy head of the beer is the reactive power that is stored in and discharged by your inductive loads (measured in kVAR). And the total contents of your glass is the apparent power in the circuit (measured in kVA).

Power factor can be improved with the installation of capacitors which supply reactive power. This is called Power Factor Correction (PFC). PFC reduces your network demand charges; increases electrical equipment life; and can reduce the need for costly upgrades by increasing the available load.

The payback on PFC is generally between one and three years. Energex is also currently offering subsidies which can further reduce the payback period.

Contact e4b to find out if PFC may be suitable for your site and how much you can potentially save.

For more information call us on 1300 781 791.