We have an underground electricity pit

11 01 2012

We didn’t want an overhead power line to our house, so we got an underground electricity pit installed.  Most new houses built in an established area will have an electricity pit included in their contract (if one does not already exist).

We submitted the application for the underground pit on 9 November.  We received the quote to install the pit on 30 November and we paid it the same day.  The pit needs to be installed near a property boundary with the neighbours and we requested the pit to be installed on the side where the meter box would be installed to make connection up to the house easier.  Just prior to Christmas, the power pit location was marked out on the footpath.

Electricity Pit Marking

And yesterday (11 January) we noticed that the underground electricity pit was installed when we visited the site.  When submitting the application for the pit, we were advised that it takes 20 working days from date of payment for the pit to be installed.  In reality it took Jemena, the local electricity distributor, 26 working days to get the pit installed.  Given the slowdown of work during Christmas holiday period, we think they installed it in a reasonable timeframe.  Overall it took 2 months from application to completed installation.

The power poles are on the opposite side on our street and the Jemena field officer who inspected the site determined it required 17 metres of cabling to complete the works.  The cost to install the underground supply, including the service pit and cable was $3392.

We went for 3 phase supply to cater for our future needs.  As technology becomes more interwoven into our lives, our power consumption will increase.  Furthermore, we are looking forward to turning our house into an icebox during the hot summer months so we will be installing a central ducted refrigerative cooling.  A normal 80A single phase supply will provide 19.2 kWe maximum.  So single phase supply could be overloaded when most things are operating (lights, fridge, tv, computer gear, central aircon unit etc) causing the fuse to blow.  This has happened to some friends of ours, especially during the summer months when the air con unit is running.

It is recommended to get the electricity pit installed prior to the builders starting work because 1) it will be cheaper to install 2) will save you money on building site costs as the builder doesn’t need a temporary power pole for the site works.  Here’s a blog post by another Metricon home build, Tim & Tina, about this.

Installed underground power pit




6 responses

10 12 2014

Hi Chris & Kristen.

Re your pole to pit installation, how did they get the line from the pole to the pit seeing as your house is located across the road from the pole? Did they cut into the bitumen or tunnel under it or…?

I am looking at doing a KDR and have contacted my electricity distributor but the only person who handles these enquiries just does not seem to know what the heck I’m asking!

Appreciate any insight you can provide.


1 01 2015

Hi KT,

Apologies for the delayed response. When we submitted our application to get the pit installed, we had to identify which electricity pole was closest to our house (each pole is numbered). Not sure if the distributor confirmed this themselves or came out to look at the job before doing it. Nevertheless, an all inclusive quote was supplied to get the pit installed which included getting the power cable from the other side of the street to our side. We didn’t see it get installed, but it looks like they tunneled underneath the road.

I would suggest asking for the application form and then filling it out and see what the quote comes back with.

Hope this helps.


9 06 2015
Tan Minh Huynh

Did you install the underground electricity pit before or after demolition?

5 09 2015

We did it after demolition, but I believe the demolition shouldn’t affect it. The only thing I would try to make sure of is getting it done before build starts.

10 01 2017

We just got our under ground power pit done by Jemena too. We also have that black tar around the pit and a strip of road missing as our pole was across from our house too. Does it stay like that or does the council return the footpath and road to its previous condition?

11 01 2017

I don’t know how to upload photos here but I am not talking about holes in the road. They tunneled under the road from one side to the other leaving a strip of road missing about 30cm wide. I am hoping that is fixed by someone??

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