TMC is an independent, primarily volunteer organization that relies on ad revenue to cover its operating costs. Please consider whitelisting TMC on your ad blocker or making a Paypal contribution here: paypal.me/SupportTMC

I don't like electricians

Discussion in 'Model S: Battery & Charging' started by David99, Feb 5, 2016.

  1. David99

    David99 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2014
    Messages:
    2,055
    Location:
    Brea, Orange County
    We just moved to a new house and I had an electrician come out to make an estimate to install a NEMA 14-50 outlet. He quoted me $400 for a 30 Amp limit and $600 for a 50 Amp limit. He said that would just be basic wiring and the outlet if it can be simply added to the panel.
    After looking at the panel he said it was full so a sub panel would be required and with dry wall work that would cost another $1300 because he would have to re-wire some other lines.

    Good thing is I know a little bit about electrical systems. The panel wasn't full. There was a single phase slot open. After some closer inspection I was able to reconnect a few wires, make space for a 50 Amp breaker and install it. With a total of $50 in parts from my local hardware store I was able to do it all myself in about 1.5 hours including driving to get the parts. The installation was as simple as it could be. The panel had a breakout in the perfect spot and I was able to get the wires right through it and directly into the NEMA 14-50 plug on the wall. I needed a total of 2 feet wire.

    I'm just pissed how some electricians think they can rip you off. Most people are clueless about electrical stuff and scared of it's dangers so they blindly accept whatever the 'expert' says.
     
  2. vvanders

    vvanders Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2014
    Messages:
    134
    Location:
    Portland, Or
    Just make sure you get it properly inspected. I've heard of homeowner claims denied when the owner did the work themselves and didn't properly document it.
     
  3. David99

    David99 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2014
    Messages:
    2,055
    Location:
    Brea, Orange County
    Absolutely. I had it permitted and inspected at my old place as well. Same for the new place!
     
  4. CHG-ON

    CHG-ON Still in love after all these miles

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2014
    Messages:
    2,766
    Location:
    Santa Cruz Mountains, USA
    Good for you. There are a lot of "licensed" charlatans out there just trying to up the bill. Stinks.
     
  5. mkjayakumar

    mkjayakumar Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2012
    Messages:
    1,741
    Location:
    Plano, TX
    Auto repair outfits, electricians, plumbers - good % of them are scumbags, IMO
     
  6. jcaspar

    jcaspar Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2013
    Messages:
    793
    Location:
    Sacramento
    This is partially why I did my 100 Amp panel and two 14-50's myself. A lot cheaper (about 500$ for the 25' run of 100amp and two 30' runs of 50amp) and I did a better looking job, all wiring behind walls, no ugly conduit.

    Now in your case, I don't think you can compare the costs as he was quoting for a much bigger job that would have cost you a lot more than 50$ as was likely outside your skill set, knowledge base. There is great satisfaction in doing it yourself and doing it right!
     
  7. Quantum`

    Quantum` Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2015
    Messages:
    169
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Trouble is, 90% of the population won't do it right.
     
  8. GreenT

    GreenT Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2014
    Messages:
    292
    Location:
    Here
    How did you get a 2 phase 240v circuit from a single phase open slot? Reconnected a few wires? Did you piggy back them?
    Sounds suspect the way you worded this.
     
  9. sorka

    sorka Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2015
    Messages:
    3,269
    Location:
    Merced, CA
    Just curious. Care to share with use you NEC 220 worksheet? You did that right? Because if you didn't, you won't know that your service panel can handle the extra load.

    And while your at, are you sure you didn't exceed the fill space limits of enclosures (NEC 312-8)?

    There are about a million other codes that need to be followed when doing doing this seemingly simple DIY addition.

    If you're aware of the national electrical code requirements and the additional code requirements for your county or city, then kudos to you for saving the cost of an electrician.
     
  10. davewill

    davewill Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2014
    Messages:
    437
    Location:
    San Diego, CA, US
    He got a permit and had it inspected so the inspector should have caught those problems. Plus the electrician who gave him the quote was going to put in a sub-panel, not upgrade the main panel, so supposedly HE was sure that the service panel could handle the extra load.

    P.S. You're not curious, you wanted to criticize him for doing it DIY. The fact is the electrician lied when he said there was no room in the service panel. He would have known there was room if he reconfigured a bit, but he wanted to pad the job.
     
  11. sorka

    sorka Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2015
    Messages:
    3,269
    Location:
    Merced, CA
    Actually, he said he got it inspected at the previous place. I don't think he's mentioned that he's already had the new installation inspected.

    I didn't criticize him but I do find it curious that there's not mention of some of the obvious things you have to do in addition to just physically installing a breaker and running wire.
     
  12. AWDtsla

    AWDtsla Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    2,135
    Location:
    NE
    Can't even get electricians to do it right. Especially if they know someone in the inspections department. Do it yourself if you want it done right.
     
  13. David99

    David99 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2014
    Messages:
    2,055
    Location:
    Brea, Orange County
    I would not recommend to anyone not familiar with electricity to do it on their own. There is so much that can go wrong. Often electrical problems aren't obvious right away, but show later and can become dangerous.

    What upset me is that he hardly looked at what would really be required, what the amount of work really was in my case. Instead he pulled out a binder with standard price quotes. There was a $200-300 difference between a 30 Amp and 50 Amp installation. That makes no sense if you need a total of 3 feet of cables. He didn't even take the inside cover off the panel to see what is really hooked up and how to put the wires through the wall. He quoted me the prices without much looking. Only after I asked, 'hey is there even enough room for another 50 Amp breaker' he jumped on the $1300 extra for the sub panel and re-wiring. If he comes out to a house to make a quote I expect him to look at what amount of work actually needs to be done, not just standard prices. I expect him to give me options and alternatives. He didn't even see (or maybe he didn't want to see) the free slot.

    Had he given me a fair quote based on the actual work he needs to do and given me some alternatives, I would have just hired him on the spot. I was busy with so many other things moving. But because he didn't, I looked closer myself and saw there is a very simple and perfectly safe solution I could easily do myself.
     
  14. Spyder14

    Spyder14 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2015
    Messages:
    161
    Location:
    Bluffton, SC
    The Tesla recommended electrician took over 3 weeks to get me an estimate after several emails & phone calls just to get a day & time. I even emailed Tesla HQ to see if they had another recommendation in my area (they did not). I finally went local for a company that does work in my neighborhood & his estimate for the NEMA 14-50 was almost half of the other so I gave him extra things to do on the house! The install is complete, under budget & looks great--very clean & simple.

    IMG_0671.jpg
     
  15. GreenT

    GreenT Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2014
    Messages:
    292
    Location:
    Here
    Sorry, I am going to hijack this thread.

    The photo above ... the drywall with the pattern all over it. I have that. I really do not like it! How does one get rid of that?

    Drywall replacement or another coat of "mud" over it by a drywall taper(er)?
     
  16. jcaspar

    jcaspar Member

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2013
    Messages:
    793
    Location:
    Sacramento
    #16 jcaspar, Feb 7, 2016
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2016
    Now that's a nice installation. No conduit!!

    And regarding going from an orange peel texture to something like imperfect smooth, no need to replace the drywall. It can be mudded over.
     
  17. bollar

    bollar Disgruntled Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2013
    Messages:
    2,243
    Location:
    Southlake, TX
    It's upside down, no? Ground should be up.
     
  18. Spyder14

    Spyder14 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2015
    Messages:
    161
    Location:
    Bluffton, SC
    It's called Knockdown finish here (down south) & my suggestion would be to sand it off since a mud coat over it may crack or peel over time. Mud coat over would be easier & cleaner though.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Good catch since I don't have my car yet!! If it is, should be very easy to rate 180 degrees?
     
  19. bollar

    bollar Disgruntled Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2013
    Messages:
    2,243
    Location:
    Southlake, TX
    Should be. Turn off the breaker (you knew that) and give it a try. The one thing you probably don't know is that the edges on that metal plate can be fairly sharp and you can get a pretty good cut if you're not careful (voice of experience here).
     
  20. Spyder14

    Spyder14 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2015
    Messages:
    161
    Location:
    Bluffton, SC
    Re: the edges--thanks for the heads up plus it gives me another good reason to cover it with 3M carbon fiber film. OCD!!!!
     

Share This Page