Overhead power cables are common for both domestic and commercial properties. However, with the rollout of all future power cables being laid underground, and new properties being required to have them, converting pre-existing overhead cables to sub-terrain is being rolled out across the nation.
There are many reasons for this. From gaining planning permission for plots when a subdivision is being sought through to upgrading when an overhead power cable repair is needed, only licensed electrical contractors are authorised to carry out the work.
Converting a power connection from overhead lines to underground is referred to as a ‘pole to pillar connection’. There are many advantages to doing so, including:
- Safety: Removing overhead cables reduces the potential hazard of fire caused by clashing cables sparking during inclement weather or ignition caused by moisture from dust on top of the poles, resultant falling power cables and poles.
- Aesthetics: Overhead power cables are unsightly. Removing them improves the appearance of a street and can also increase property values.
- Reduces maintenance: Such as tree pruning and other vegetation that grows in the vicinity.
Underground power can even be fitted in a street where there’s no cabling. This is done using a ‘green dome’ also known as a green pillar.
Government incentives mean that a designated process has been created for property owners to follow if they want to take advantage of converting to underground power. This involves an online application process to your network provider Western Power or Horizon that provides you with the necessary references and details to give to us. The actual process takes around 3 weeks to complete once the application process has been approved. The exact time will also depend on the existing cables in your area. If it’s determined that a cable runs across a main road, we will organise all the relevant traffic safety requirements that must be put in place. This takes around three weeks to complete.
Costs are subsidised, with these being determined by the length of the underground cable to your property from the green dome or pillar, and the disconnection and reconnection to Western Power services. Our quote is inclusive of everything involved in the installation and connection of the power. A general figure for an overhead to underground conversion is $2,000 – $4,000. This is over and above the quote from Western Power.
We liaise with the power company on your behalf and strive to ensure as little disruption to your power supply as possible. Typically, it’s only necessary to switch off the power for between 2 to 3 hours on the day of connection. The process involves the installation of a pillar near your property. This is carried out by Western Power. Once done, we install the mains cabling from the pillar to your meter box.
Other services we provide for both overhead and underground power supplies include:
- Repairs, should a pillar become damaged
- Relocation of pillars and/or power poles
- The installation of new consumer mains cables when faulty
- New property power supply installations
- Temporary overhead supply
- Single to Three Phase conversion
- Temporary disconnection services
- Meter installation and mains connection
- Installation of switchboards for subdivisions