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Can I use this Nema 14-50 outlet?

joebruin77

Active Member
Dec 23, 2018
1,149
1,033
Encino, CA
So I am looking for temporary charging options while my Wall Connector is being repaired. I found someone through the EV Match app in my area who is offering the use of a 14-50 outlet with these specifications:

Power Output: 11kW
Voltage: 220V
Amperage: 50A

I have the Tesla 14-50 adapter that came with my Mobile Connector. It is rated at 250V and 30A.

Can I use my Tesla 14-50 adapter that is rated at 30A with this particular outlet that puts out 50A? I assume the car's charger will limit the max power coming in to 30 amps but just wanted to make sure this is the case and that it is safe for me to charge at this 14-50 outlet.

Thank you,
joebruin77
 
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Saghost

Well-Known Member
Oct 9, 2013
8,224
7,088
Delaware
So I am looking for temporary charging options while my Wall Connector is being repaired. I found someone through the EV Match app in my area who is offering the use of a 14-50 outlet with these specifications:

Power Output: 11kW
Voltage: 220V
Amperage: 50A

I have the Tesla 14-50 adapter that came with my Mobile Connector. It is rated at 250V and 30A.

Can I use my Tesla 14-50 adapter that is rated at 30A with this particular outlet that puts out 50A? I assume the car's charger will limit the max power coming in to 30 amps but just wanted to make sure this is the case and that it is safe for me to charge at this 14-50 outlet.

Thank you,
joebruin77

The car will happily take pretty much any form of power it gets handed. The Mobile Connector will tell the car it can't have more than 32A, and the car will respond by taking 32A, unless the voltage drop looks high - in which case the car will reduce the amperage and you'll get a message on the screen.
 
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Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,807
8,422
Boise, ID
That is why they have these outlets in a standardized system. If someone does have a legit 14-50 outlet, and you have a legit 14-50 plug, you plug it in, and it works. You only have to start asking if you're trying to do weird custom made pigtail adapters to switch from one outlet type to another, and then it can get into whether they are different amp ratings.
 
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hcdavis3

HCD3
Supporting Member
Mar 3, 2019
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That is why they have these outlets in a standardized system. If someone does have a legit 14-50 outlet, and you have a legit 14-50 plug, you plug it in, and it works. You only have to start asking if you're trying to do weird custom made pigtail adapters to switch from one outlet type to another, and then it can get into whether they are different amp ratings.
Any questions...Rocky knows more than anybody on the forums. Rocky knows best.
 

doghousePVD

My grandfather’s car
Dec 3, 2018
653
600
New England, USA
The only possible caveat is some RV campgrounds have non-standard non-legit bastard 14-50 outlets, and they won't work for charging EVs. Not dangerous, just highly annoying. If you run up against a "14-50" wired wrongly, a voltage check against the two hot pins will show only 120 V, not 240 V. It is possible to hack it and get some charge out of it, but that is another discussion.

Fortunately, these bastards are quite rare. These outlet are NOT legit 14-50s.
 

dfwatt

Best Car Ever
Sep 24, 2018
3,240
5,414
FL
That is why they have these outlets in a standardized system. If someone does have a legit 14-50 outlet, and you have a legit 14-50 plug, you plug it in, and it works. You only have to start asking if you're trying to do weird custom made pigtail adapters to switch from one outlet type to another, and then it can get into whether they are different amp ratings.

Hi Rocky

you seem knowledgeable about this stuff, but I heard from a Tesla solar install team that the 14-50 plug charging support is, or will be, pulled. You can't get the 14-50 wall connector anymore. Any insights into this would be appreciated. I've got the 14-50 adapter for the UMC (mid-2018 edition) that came with the car. Worked without issue last winter. What's going on?

Installing the dedicated standard wall connector is significantly more expensive, and since I probably couldn't get a 60 amp breaker out fo my panel, the 40 amp connection wouldn't be any faster. So unless this pathway is for sure going away, would like the option to just use the UMC and the 14-50 adapter.
 

srs5694

Active Member
Jan 15, 2019
1,246
1,531
Woonsocket, RI
I heard from a Tesla solar install team that the 14-50 plug charging support is, or will be, pulled. You can't get the 14-50 wall connector anymore.

This is the first I've heard such a claim, and the NEMA 14-50 adapter is still listed on Tesla's Web store. I suspect that somebody in this game of "telephone" got confused because Tesla has pulled the NEMA 14-50 adapter as a standard part of the Mobile Connector that comes with the car. That kit used to include both NEMA 14-50 and NEMA 5-15 adapters, but now it comes only with the NEMA 5-15 for charging on 120v wall outlets. (This is in the USA and, I'm pretty sure, Canada. The hardware that comes standard in Europe, China, and elsewhere is, of course, customized for those markets.) You can still buy a NEMA 14-50 adapter for $35. I'm not privy to sales numbers, so I don't know how many of each type Tesla sells, but I expect the NEMA 14-50 is a popular choice for people who want to install a 240v outlet in their garage. Among the other options Tesla sells, only the NEMA 6-50 would equal the NEMA 14-50 in charge speed; all the others are 30A (24A continuous) or slower, compared to the 32A continuous that the Mobile Connector will provide with a NEMA 14-50 (or 6-50). My impression from reading this forum is that the NEMA 14-50 is far more popular than the NEMA 6-50, even for new installs.
 

dfwatt

Best Car Ever
Sep 24, 2018
3,240
5,414
FL
This is the first I've heard such a claim, and the NEMA 14-50 adapter is still listed on Tesla's Web store. I suspect that somebody in this game of "telephone" got confused because Tesla has pulled the NEMA 14-50 adapter as a standard part of the Mobile Connector that comes with the car. That kit used to include both NEMA 14-50 and NEMA 5-15 adapters, but now it comes only with the NEMA 5-15 for charging on 120v wall outlets. (This is in the USA and, I'm pretty sure, Canada. The hardware that comes standard in Europe, China, and elsewhere is, of course, customized for those markets.) You can still buy a NEMA 14-50 adapter for $35. I'm not privy to sales numbers, so I don't know how many of each type Tesla sells, but I expect the NEMA 14-50 is a popular choice for people who want to install a 240v outlet in their garage. Among the other options Tesla sells, only the NEMA 6-50 would equal the NEMA 14-50 in charge speed; all the others are 30A (24A continuous) or slower, compared to the 32A continuous that the Mobile Connector will provide with a NEMA 14-50 (or 6-50). My impression from reading this forum is that the NEMA 14-50 is far more popular than the NEMA 6-50, even for new installs.

Super helpful response. Thank you very much. It also aligns with the fact that even though the Nema 14 - 50 is no longer sold as a single unit or at least as listed as out of stock, you can get it in a package deal FOR $220 or something like that. It seems inconceivable that they'd be selling an adapter that is orphaned in terms of charging support..
 

doghousePVD

My grandfather’s car
Dec 3, 2018
653
600
New England, USA
The 14-50 is by far the most common 50 amp 240 volt outlet. Just about very campground and every residence with an electric stove has a 14-50. While a 6-50 make a little more sense ( 3 wires, not 4), few consumer locations have 6-50. However, just about every machine shop, welding shop, mechanic garage and a lot of commercial barns will have 6-50 outlets. The 14-50 will always be a common charging plug for North American Teslas.

I think Tesla is foolish not distributing 14-50 as standard equipment, as more people are likely to use/overuse Superchargers instead of getting their own home charging arrangement.
 

srs5694

Active Member
Jan 15, 2019
1,246
1,531
Woonsocket, RI
Super helpful response. Thank you very much. It also aligns with the fact that even though the Nema 14 - 50 is no longer sold as a single unit or at least as listed as out of stock....

It is indeed listed as out of stock -- but lots of items on Tesla's Web store go out of stock frequently, but typically for short periods of time. Don't read anything into the fact that it's out of stock now, except that it's out of stock now.

Also, even items that are out of stock on the Web store are often available locally if you drop by a Tesla store/service center in person.
 
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Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,807
8,422
Boise, ID
Yeah, it seems like there are a few mistaken ideas in this, as covered by other people.
I heard from a Tesla solar install team that the 14-50 plug charging support is, or will be, pulled. You can't get the 14-50 wall connector anymore.
That is something else entirely. That was a mystery item that people had seen a few years ago, but never officially sold, and then finally Tesla did officially start selling it, but it was going in and out of stock frequently, and then a couple of months ago, they posted on their website listing that they were discontinuing that wall connector with a plug, and once it sold out, it would be gone. But that is just that particular product. As @brkaus mentioned, you can still get the corded mobile connector with 14-50 permanently on it, that can pass 40A, and the regular 14-50 adapter for the 2nd generation mobile connector is still available, although it sometimes goes in and out of stock week by week, as they don't seem to keep up with inventory supply all that well. But yes, that is still available.

Installing the dedicated standard wall connector is significantly more expensive,
Why would that be? You're still running the wiring and then attaching the wires to [DEVICE]. Whether the device is an outlet or the wall connector shouldn't be a really big difference in price, compared to running the circuit to that location. If you're using a smaller sized circuit on the wall connector, the materials could even be cheaper. But I guess it probably does take a little more time, since getting the wires attached into the wall connector is a bit more of a pain to deal with than how easily you can attach them onto an outlet that has more room around it to work with and is quicker to mount on the wall. But I haven't gotten quotes for the two things, so I don't know for sure.
 

dfwatt

Best Car Ever
Sep 24, 2018
3,240
5,414
FL
Yeah, it seems like there are a few mistaken ideas in this, as covered by other people.

That is something else entirely. That was a mystery item that people had seen a few years ago, but never officially sold, and then finally Tesla did officially start selling it, but it was going in and out of stock frequently, and then a couple of months ago, they posted on their website listing that they were discontinuing that wall connector with a plug, and once it sold out, it would be gone. But that is just that particular product. As @brkaus mentioned, you can still get the corded mobile connector with 14-50 permanently on it, that can pass 40A, and the regular 14-50 adapter for the 2nd generation mobile connector is still available, although it sometimes goes in and out of stock week by week, as they don't seem to keep up with inventory supply all that well. But yes, that is still available.


Why would that be? You're still running the wiring and then attaching the wires to [DEVICE]. Whether the device is an outlet or the wall connector shouldn't be a really big difference in price, compared to running the circuit to that location. If you're using a smaller sized circuit on the wall connector, the materials could even be cheaper. But I guess it probably does take a little more time, since getting the wires attached into the wall connector is a bit more of a pain to deal with than how easily you can attach them onto an outlet that has more room around it to work with and is quicker to mount on the wall. But I haven't gotten quotes for the two things, so I don't know for sure.

Labor is the same. Cost of Nema 1450 connection and material fifty bucks. You've already got that UMC Gen 2 connector which plugs straight in, zero-cost compliment to the car. Cost of Tesla wall connector five hundred bucks. You do the math. The difference is $450, although you use your UMC and tie that up. But we have two so it's not a big deal
 
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joebruin77

Active Member
Dec 23, 2018
1,149
1,033
Encino, CA
Since my original post, Tesla sent me a new Wall Connector covered under warranty (thank you, Tesla!). I had my electrician install a 14-50 Nema outlet for me to use with the UMC, which came in handy while I was waiting for the Wall Connector to be shipped. Now I have both the Wall Connector and a 14-50 outlet, which is primarily my backup in case something happens to render the Wall Connector inoperable.

In terms of cost, the Wall Connector was $550, but the cost of a corded 14-50 mobile connector is $520. Yes, you can use the original mobile connector with the 14-50 adapter, but it was a pain to keep having to unplug it and put it in my trunk every time I charged. I have my charging set up on the outside of my house, so I do not want to leave my mobile connector plugged into the 14-50 outlet when I am not home. The mounted Wall Connector is more secure and cannot be easily stolen.

Also remember to check with your local utility. My local power company paid me a $500 rebate on the Wall Connector. They would not pay the rebate on a 14-50 plug. If you are eligible for such a rebate, then the net cost for the 14-50 would actually be higher.

The Wall Connector is protected from bad weather and rain more than the mobile connector. So if you are using it outside like me, I think the Wall Connector is the better charging solution.

One advantage to the corded 14-50 mobile connector is that if anything happens to it, you can order a new one from Tesla and just plug it into your 14-50 outlet. And you can temporarily use your UMC with the 14-50 adapter. If something goes wrong with the Wall Connector and it has to be repaired or replaced, it will likely be several weeks until it is up and running again.

So even though it cost a few hundred extra bucks, I decided to have the best of both worlds and have both the Wall Connector and the 14-50 outlet installed side by side.
 
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brkaus

Well-Known Member
Jul 8, 2014
8,093
6,648
Austin, TX
BTW - my gut feel is the corded wall connector had a design problem. I believe it still had the wheel to control the current limit up to 80a, but the charge wand/cable was lighter and rated for 40a (50a breaker). Plus it adds no value (except perhaps looks) over the corded connector.
 

Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,807
8,422
Boise, ID
Installing the dedicated standard wall connector is significantly more expensive
Why would that be?
Cost of Nema 1450 connection and material fifty bucks. You've already got that UMC Gen 2 connector which plugs straight in, zero-cost compliment to the car. Cost of Tesla wall connector five hundred bucks. You do the math.
:( Sigh. Words have meanings for a reason. Sure, buying an item you don't have costs more than using an item you do already have. That isn't about the cost of "installing", which is what you said and I was questioning. I don't want people getting a wrong idea about that.
Labor is the same.
OK, so installing one or the other does cost about the same. Thanks for clearing that up.

But lets address this part a little bit:
Cost of Nema 1450 connection and material fifty bucks.
Close, but not quite. NEC 2017 requires that outlets installed for the purpose of electric vehicle charging must use a GFCI breaker. That lovely piece of equipment costs over $100 by itself. Here is a SquareD one listed at Home Depot for $104.
Square D Homeline 50 Amp 2-Pole GFCI Circuit Breaker-HOM250GFICP - The Home Depot
That's some extra cost that the outlet setup requires that the wall connector setup doesn't, because code lets you use a normal breaker on a hardwired device, so that's about $70-80 extra cost in that outlet situation.

So now for the outlet. As several people have pointed out, it's a bit dangerous using the crummy Leviton receptacle that costs $12 or whatever. I would really hope that you would select one of the decent ones from Bryant or Cooper or Hubbel. The Hubbel ones are about $90, but you can find some better deals on some of the others around $30-$50.

So I would say there is still about a $350 cost difference in the materials. It's a bit situation dependent on what use cases and future setups might be as to whether it's worth spending or saving that $350. Indoor in a garage, sure, I've been going with an outlet and mobile cable permanently hanging on the wall--that is a good solution. But for outdoor installations, I would always recommend the wall connector for weatherproofing. Also, if you plan to get another Tesla sometime in the next several years, the wall connectors work really well joining together to allocate charging resources, so it might be worth getting set up for that.
 

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