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Rough price for 14-50R installation in Maryland?

2058 Views 40 Replies 17 Participants Last post by  richguess
We have an existing 30 amp 220V outlet in our garage for a wall heater installed by the previous owner. We had an electrician come out and give us an estimate - he said that the existing outlet is too low for the cable length on a typical charger (it is near the floor) so he needs to install a junction box, and he can add a new 14-50R outlet (for the 32 A charger) plus restore the existing outlet to the junction box. His formal quote:

Furnish and install 14-50R tapped off of existing wiring. Includes installing junction box and re-installing existing receptacle. $660 total.

This is about double the expected cost - considering they is no need to install the 220V wiring/breaker. Is this quote unreasonable?
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Yes it's a rip off. If it were me I'd skip the plug, run flex conduit between the existing box and hardwire into the EVSE (all of the good ones support, and even recommend hardwire. That avoids the NEC code mandated GFCI and nuisance tripping. $20 in parts from the Depot (plus a few clamps and maybe a box cover) and 15 min and done. Folks do handstands to get a plug that matches the EVSE. Skip it!

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The electrical box is no joke. I'm always on my toes the few times I worked in there. Just be safe is all, I agree plumbers and electricians overcharge a lot. $660 ain't bad I mean if you put a price on your health. I mean if you get roasted another guy is going to get the keys to your RAV4 prime and probably move into the house just saying. Not to mention well I won't mention it lol. Think about that and weigh the pros and cons.
I'm not necessarily suggesting a homeowner do it. I'm saying (1) there's no requirement for a plug and all of the extra complexity, and (2) it's 15 min of work for an electrician. So that it can be priced accordingly. Price can come down dramatically depending upon what you tell the electrician to do.

"I need a 14-50 plug right here." "OK I have to upgrade you to a GFCI breaker, install a box, get an outlet, pull wire, etc. $600."
"This charger that I've already hung on the wall has a knockout for wiring right here, and I need it hardwired to this junction box over here 4 feet away." "OK I have a piece of #10 armor flex in the truck be right back. $150."
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According to the electrician, the cords on the chargers are only about a foot long, so I will need something to help me connect the charger to the existing outlet position - unless I want to have the charger only 18 inches off the floor.

Probably worth getting another quote - I've used this company several times before and their prices have been reasonable, but $600 feels very high for under an hour's work and maybe $50 in parts.
What charger? I am suggesting that cords on most chargers can be replaced with either a longer cord or no cord at all.

This came out of my Chargepoint: (no tools required).
Cable Composite material Wire Electrical supply Heat-shrink tubing

And I caused this to happen (any electrician can do this and the conduit can go wherever it needs to go. You have a J box just a few feet away):
Motor vehicle Steering wheel Electrical wiring Bicycle handlebar Rim
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According to the electrician, code requires a switch on the box if the charger does not have a box, so getting a charger without a plug (they make one for roughly the same price), or replacing the cable in the unit, will mean adding the cost of the switch - not a lot, but it would still mean it is not as simple as connecting the cable to the existing outlet box.
That's the 2nd red flag after price. It's possible (but VERY unlikely) that your AHJ has adopted codes more stringent than NEC national model codes requiring service disconnect. Your circuit is not >60A, and almost every home in the USA is 120V to ground (except for really, REALLY big houses and commercial properties), so service disconnect won't apply. I'd definitely go for a 2nd opinion. Good luck.

Summary of NEC EVSE Service Disconnect requirements:
"Charging stations require disconnect – lockable open as per NEC 2017 Section 110.25 in readily accessible location, if the equipment is rated more than 60 amps and 150V to Ground, as per NEC 2017 Section 625.42"
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While I appreciate all the replies suggesting I do it myself, I would love to get an answer to my question: is the $650 reasonable for the job or is it way to high BASED ON TYPICAL COSTS FOR AN ELECTRICIAN TO DO THE WORK.
It is not reasonable. First sentence of post #2.

I saw the pics in your other thread, if you are going the plug route, a competent electrician needs 2 J boxes, a couple feet of 8/3, and a 14-50 outlet, and optionally a 14-30 outlet to replace the surface mount heater plug (if you want to save it). $30-40 parts tops. Trip charge ~$75 and and minimum labor 1h~$75. $250 TOPS. I never encourage anyone to DIY (and didn't intend to on this thread) but try to inform on what to ask of who is doing the work so you are educated. Good luck.
So you are suggesting the electrician is NOT going to turn the breaker off that feeds power to that line? I know there are A LOT of stupid people out there that wouldn't turn the power off, but an electrician would. With the breaker off to that outlet, there is NO risk to their health.
I think he's saying a homeowner doing it might electrocute himself and wife has to find another man. Of course wife also might hook up with the electrician, while husband is at the office reading TPS reports. :cool: All kinds of things can happen-
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And if you DIY it still get a permit and inspection for electric work.
If there was a problem and your house burns down and the insurance inspector sees that you didn't have an inspection then they have an out not to cover the loss. It's bad enough losing your house but you'll also have to hear it from your wife the rest of your life!
Just for the avoidance of doubt, since OP appears to be going the DIY route- MD does not require (and likely will not issue) an electrical permit for an outlet change. (this is the case in most states).

From the link below: "A permit is not required for a homeowner to repair or replace a portable appliance, lighting fixture, fuse, lamp, socket or to make other minor repairs at an existing outlet in the homeowner's residence." 100 of 100 electricians or inspectors would consider this an "other minor repair." Insofar as OP is going to the expense of a torque-driven screwdriver and touchless power detector (which I almost NEVER see electricians use) I think the risk of him getting run over in the Lowe's parking lot is far greater than the risk of what he's trying to do here. Just make sure the breaker is off.

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