Power Factor

A measure of how effectively a site uses electricity.

In basic terms, Power Factor is the ratio of actual power, sometimes called real power, being used by your business, to the total power being supplied from the grid, sometimes called apparent power.

Many network providers have started to charge large businesses for the demand they place on the electricity grid, as well as their daily energy use. This means that if you have a kVA charge (kilo-volt-ampere) on your energy bill, then Power Factor is important to what your business pays for electricity.

Your Power Factor ratio can range from zero to one.

Power Factor is expressed as a value between zero and one; the closer the Power Factor is to one, the more efficiently electricity is being used. This is considered a “good Power Factor” and your equipment is working efficiently. A poor Power Factor shows that your business is using more energy than you need and as such, potentially paying higher network tariff demand charges.  

Power Factor correction units

How do the units work?

Our units use software driven capacitors to supply peak power to your business. These capacitors act like batteries and the unit injects the right amount of electricity to smooth your demand throughout the day.

Units come in a range of sizes to suit your requirements from the smaller 10 kVA units to modular large units scalable to 600 kVA units.

We’ll tailor and install the right one for your business, provide you with the support you need and payment option to suit.


Lower energy costs

Power Factor can reduce kVA demand charges and positively impact your bottom line.


Improve equipment life

A good Power Factor can improve the voltage received by electrical equipment; extending the life and efficiency of machinery.


Reduce emissions

By lowering the amount of non-useful power or reactive power being supplied, a good Power Factor can help to reduce your carbon footprint.

Why use PFC units?

Large businesses can consume a high level of electricity, which means power costs are a major business overhead. By installing a Power Factor correction unit, your business can start to work more efficiently and reduce its demand charges.

What causes low Power Factor?

Most commercial and industrial sites will typically have induction machines that produce inductive loads installed at their premises such as:

  • Electric motors/transformers/coils
  • Industrial fans used in heating and cooling units
  • Compressors/relays used in refrigerators
  • Ventilation units

A low Power Factor is often caused by inductive loads. 

In simple terms, reactive power cannot be eliminated as it is required to partially power induction machines. Whilst reactive power cannot be eliminated, it can be provided by capacitors such as Power Factor correction units.

What is reactive power?

Reactive power measured as kVAr is the amount of power that does not perform any useful work, but is caused as a result of the voltage supplied to a site and the current drawn by equipment on a site.

Ready to get in touch?

For any questions or to find out more on commercial solar, business energy solutions or energy management, please get in touch.

Call 1300 658 773   Email EnergySolutions@origin.com.au