Kiwis are unimpressed with the big five power companies, a survey by Consumer NZ has found.

A survey of customer satisfaction with energy providers showed the big five companies - Contact, Genesis, Mercury, Meridian and Trustpower delivered underwhelming services.

The survey found only 45 per cent of consumers said they were very satisfied with their energy retailer.

"This satisfaction rating is lower than rates we've found in the banking and general insurance industries, and dragged down largely by the performance of the big five," said Consumer NZ chief executive Sue Chetwin.


"Our surveys consistently find the big players are letting the side down in the customer satisfaction stakes. This year, their proportions of very satisfied customers were all below 50 per cent."

Bosco Connect, a subsidiary of Mercury Energy which often serves as the default provider in apartments, was singled out for bad customer experience.

"Thirty per cent of customers with Bosco had regularly experienced long wait times to speak to a customer service representative. It's overall rate of very satisfied customers was just 28 per cent," Chetwin said.

Chetwin said Bosco's price was a third more than the national average and apartment dwellers were often given the impression they have no other options.

"We're aware of one letting agent that wrongly told clients they had no choice of energy retailer," she said.

Flick Electric scored the top marks in Consumer NZ's survey with 71 per cent of customers saying they were very satisfied with the company's service.

Flick's prices are directly tied to the wholesale price of power. A recent surge in spot prices occurred due to low lake levels in the South Island.