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Advice Appreciated Re: NEMA 14:50

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First post here, but lurking for a while. Just about to confirm order and received the following from local electrician here in NJ.

"Labor, material to install a Nema 14 - 50 amp weatherproof outlet for standard electric cars would be $1,200.00. Note price includes changing four existing breakers in your panel to tandem breakers to make space for the 50 amp breaker."

Would appreciated advice regarding cost and changing breakers.
Thanks everyone .. it is approx 50 ft from the panel to the proposed outlet location in the garage. Wire needs to go through finished basement so either through walls or above drop ceiling.

The price sounds a little expensive. Luckily you have a drop ceiling which would make things easier.

I recently had two NEMA 14-50 outlets installed for about $1800. Previously, I had a 40 amp line going from the main panel, through the house and to the garage. The basement has been totally finished since the original 40 amp line was run, so we decided to go with conduit around the back of the house for the new 100 amp line in order to cut down on costs. We had them disconnect the old 40 amp line and it is no longer used. The install took a couple of days and included upgrading the breaker feeding the garage at the main panel to 100 amps, running about 75 feet of wire through conduit along the back of the house, upgrading several breakers in the subpanel in the garage and installing two NEMA outlets in the garage (about 30 and 50 foot runs from the subpanel).

Be sure to get multiple estimates. My first estimate (that I had to pay a trip charge for) was $7000. My second estimate was around $2800 and the third estimate was just over $1800. Shop around!
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$85 in materials and $1115 in labor. Sounds about right. :scared:

Seems pretty pricey, 50' through a drop ceiling should be a fairly easy run. About $100 in wire.

Not exactly (probably high estimates, but still)
$100 in wire
$25 in breaker
$25 junction box
$100 to replace the 4 breakers with duplex
Permit fee ($100+? Depends on jurisdiction)
$250 parts + $100 permit + $800 in labor. $800 for 2 hours to run the cable and install the outlet, and 1 hour to replace 4 breakers? Seems a little high.

Where's Flasherz, I'm sure he'll have some good insight.

And I agree on shopping around, and don't tell them it's for a Tesla.
Personal experience - installed a 14-50 in my garage in Atlanta - about 40' from breaker box, no finished basement so minimal detail work. Total was $550. Installed an external box in Florida on panhandle, 30' run under the house, moved a few breakers - $250. Moral of the story - shop around.
If you're somewhat handy, why not buy the materials and run the cable yourself. Mount everything and then pay an electrician to install the breaker in the box and make the connections? 15 minutes of labor plus travel charge. Just make sure you get the right kind of cable. Read FlasherZ's wiki for those details.
When I was shopping around:

"I'm getting a Tesla, and I'd like to install a NEMA 14-50 in my garage to charge it." -> $800 quote

"I'd like to install a NEMA 14-50." -> $400 quote.

Could have just been the difference between the two companies, of course, but I can't help but be suspicious.

It was the opposite for me. I asked for 2 14-50 outlets and the electrician gave a very vague estimate of $5000 to update the panel and run the wiring to the garage and $1000 per charger, so $7000 total. I never once mentioned Tesla and never asked for any chargers to be installed. I think they just didn't want to do the work for whatever reason and priced their estimate accordingly.

When I ended up going with the Tesla Recommended electrician, they knew from the start that the outlets were for a Tesla and they gave me the $1800 quote. MUCH better than $7000!
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I installed an outdoor 14-50 about 50' from the sub-panel through 50' of flexible PVC conduit. Cost was about $100 for wire (6 gauge), $40 for the conduit, $25 for the circuit breaker, $35 for the 14-50 and box. (No medical bills from digging 15' of trench.)
I did mine, by myself, for around $250 in parts.

82' run, bougt new 50 amp dual breaker, new metal box to hold new 14-50 outlet. Run it through drop ceiling, under crawal space and through cinder block wall to garage.

If I had hired an electrician he probably would have done 2 hours of labor (that's all it took me). I am not sure what the status of your panel is (do you have enough room for it versus your inbound amperage) and the bulk of the cost may be associated with your panel.

Either way, I'd get at least a second or third bid.
Seems pricey, but just get 3 bids and take the best one. This is always good contractor best practice. Replacing 4 breakers means your sub-panel is completely full, so you need to make room for your 50A double pole breaker to take up the freed slots. The breakers will be $30-80 per piece. I had my HPWC installed for $500, about a 20-ft run in PVC conduit outside my garage wall.

Separately, I would highly recommend you get an HPWC instead of using the UMC. It's way sexier and the convenience of both just grabbing the plug off the wall and having the UMC in your car at all times is undeniable. But mostly, I did it because the HPWC is so sexy.

- K
I'm going to echo what the other folks have said - sounds a bit pricey. I would recommend getting a second bid.

I would tell the electrician that you want a 50-amp RV outlet put in the garage, don't bother telling them what it's for.