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Water-heating: Ripple Control

16 April 2015

Local people often ask what ‘ripple control’ is, and how it works.  If you have a ‘controlled circuit’ in your home it will probably be connected to your hot water cylinder.  The ripple relay is used to switch water heater power off at critical times - like on cold winter nights when demand for electricity is highest and at times when faults mean less power is available in the local area. 

Most people don’t even notice this happening and there are a lot of good reasons to use ripple control:

  • About 30% of the energy in the average home is used for water heating
  • Having controlled power usually saves you money on your power bill
  • Controlling power helps to keep the electricity system reliable and lowers costs.

Ripple control is also a helpful network management tool.  Last October the power to water cylinders was controlled during a Transpower fault.  If engineers had not controlled the water heating they would have risked full power outages in parts of the Counties Power area.

Component Headline Ripple Control


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