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NEMA 14-50 DIY Installation

Discussion in 'Charging and Infrastructure' started by garsh, Aug 12, 2017.

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  1. garsh

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    After putting down my depost on a Model 3 last year, I called around to a couple of places to get estimates for installing two NEMA 14-50 outlets in my garage. I received an estimate of $1650 for the work. That seemed outrageously high to me. This morning, I finally ran out to Lowes, bought $300 worth of hardware, and got started.
    [​IMG]
    Here I have one outlet completed, and the box mounted for the second one. I've since finished both outlets, and have big, thick 6/3 NM-B run through the basement rafters all the way to the breaker panel. In the next day or two, I'll finish wiring them up.

    Then I guess I need to buy a 240v EVSE so I can use these outlets to charge my Leaf while I wait for the Model 3. :)
     
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    • SoFlaModel3

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      I am very handy around the house and can generally handle most electrical work, but there is just something about touching the panel that freaks me out.
       
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      • KennethK

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        I put mine in 2 years ago for about $250 in materials and 1 and half hours of time. I also used the same gauge wire and suspended it from the basement joists. I was later surprised at the end of the year, when the 30% tax incentive became available retroactively.IMG_20170812_214450.jpg
         
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        • mig

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          How have you been charging your Leaf all this time!? 120v trickle charger?
           
        • garsh

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          I mainly charge at work.
          But yes, when I charge at home, I've just been using the trickle charger.
           
        • garsh

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          • Badback

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            I will be installing a HPWC this fall. Since I have to get into the garage attic, I am waiting for cooler weather. Hard part will be stringing the cable all of the way across my basement, which is a finished space in some areas. My OTHER(MHFC) will be helping by pushing the cable through the hole to the garage. Then it will go up the wall into the space above the garage so that it can come down on the wall between my 2nd and 3rd garage doors. It will definitely be a struggle, especially for an old geezer like me.

            People shouldn't worry about working inside the panel, just be careful not to touch any bare conductors. Connect your wires to the breaker before snapping it onto the buss bars and make sure that the breaker if off. Use a piece of tape over the lever until you are ready to turn it on. If you make a mistake in your wiring and you get a short, the worst that will happen is the breaker will trip. Don't panic, just go look for the brunt marks and fix the mistake. When you make connections, work from the load back to the panel and put all of the covers on before you energize the circuit. That way you won't have any hot metal flying out if you made a mistake. Make sure that the outlet box of HPWC is securely connected to the cables ground wire and that the ground wire is connected to the panel's ground bus, usually at the top of the panel just below the main breaker. Electrical work is just common sense, work carefully and make sure that all connection are tight.
             
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            • garsh

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              When I look inside my panel, I see bare conductors all over the place.

              Always be mindful when working in the panel. Don't hold another tool in your other hand because you were too lazy to put it down. All it takes is to accidentally touch the wrong thing and you'll get a nice shock. I always make sure I'm not working in the panel when I'm dehydrated or a little sleepy - I'm too scared to make a mistake there.

              Anyhow, I'm all done! Both outlets are wired up and working. Now I just need something to plug into them. :)
               
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              • Topher

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                In fact, some people recommend putting your other hand in your back pocket.

                Generally, electric work is simple, color-coded, and dangerous. Know what you are doing, and you should be fine; Don't, and you may have troubles, some of which can be fatal.

                Thank you kindly.
                 
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                • Matthew Morgan

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                  Nicely done sir. Are you going to run two sets of wires or just have one set feeding both outlets?
                   
                • garsh

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                  Two separate runs. The current plan is to keep the Leaf when we get the Model 3, and I want to be able to charge them simultaneously.
                   
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                  From the packaging you showed, can I assume your run was 125 ft. OR LESS?

                  Did you bother to do the voltage drop calculation(s)?

                  Did you get it inspected?

                  Is your house equipped with a 200 Amp (or greater) electrical service?

                  If not, how many high amp loads does your house have? (Electric dryer, Air Conditioning, etc.)


                  17.088 ^2
                   
                • garsh

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                  1. Two runs of about 30 ft each.
                  2. It's 6 gauge wire. I oversized so I wouldn't need to worry about it. 8 gauge would have been fine.
                  3. No
                  4. 200 amp
                  5. 50 amp dryer circuit and 30 amp air conditioning circuit.
                   
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                  Agreed re voltage drop.

                  With 200 Amps, household load should be fine.
                   
                • JWardell

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                  • PTFI

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                    Looks Great! I had a question regarding if it made a difference if the ground was upside down like in this video by SteveJurveston.



                    I believe it was Trevor who said that it didn't make a difference...just don't have too much stress on the cord.

                    We're going with the Nema 14-50 too. So far I have an estimate for $250 including parts.
                    It will require only a couple of feet of 6 gauge wire since the panel is on the opposite side of the wall in our garage where we want the outlet installed.
                     
                  • SSonnentag

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                    Looks great!

                    I have 400A service and am currently using a NEMA 14-50 outdoor outlet and charger rated for up to 40A. I'd love to install a higher capacity Tesla charger, but don't know how to prevent drawing too many Amperes.

                    Circuit Amperes
                    --------------------- -------
                    Air Conditioner 1 60*
                    Air Conditioner 2 30*
                    Air Conditioner 3 30*
                    Air Handler 1 30*
                    Air Handler 2 30*
                    Air Handler 3 30*
                    Master Bath 1 20
                    Master Bath 2 20
                    Guest Bedroom 15
                    Photo Cell 15
                    Dryer 1 30*
                    Dryer 2 30
                    Kitchen 1 20*
                    Kitchen 2 20
                    Kitchen 3 20
                    Kitchen 4 20
                    Range 1 40*
                    Range 2 40
                    Island 20
                    Microwave 20*
                    Dishwasher 20*
                    Laundry Room 20
                    Dining Room 1 20
                    Dining Room 2 20
                    Living Room 1 20*
                    Living Room 2 20
                    Bedroom 1 20*
                    Bedroom 2 20
                    Bathroom 1 20
                    Bathroom 2 20
                    NEMA 15-40 50*
                    Welder 50
                    Water Pump 20*

                    The starred circuits are the ones that could realistically be utilized simultaneously. We have a guest house in addition to our main home, so the starred values above assume someone is also staying in the guest house. The welder circuit is easy enough to plan for so that things aren't overloaded. This totals up to 450A as is, so upgrading to a faster charger seems a bit iffy to me. Granted, this is pretty much a worst case scenario, and the circuits would most likely never draw their full capacity, but how does one go about ensuring that an EV charger doesn't overload the system?
                     
                  • SSonnentag

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                    I wonder if I could look at our electric meter to see how much current we are drawing at any one time.
                     
                  • KennethK

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                    Hopefully this is what you are looking for. The WC has a rotating switch selection to set a Max current level.
                     
                  • KennethK

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                    Also, the sum of the circuit breakers can exceed the maximum of the panel. Those are only Max currents that each circuit is drawing and not typical. If the main circuit breaker is exceeded, it will trip.
                     
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