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NEMA 14-50 is dead - all hail NEMA 6-50

dmurphy

Woof.
Dec 7, 2018
3,474
4,682
New Jersey - Morris County
A relevant question to this thread:

I rent a house and will probably be there for ~3 more years before we build our dream house. My landlord gave me permission to have a circuit/outlet of my choice installed for charging. Our 200A panel is actually quite a long run from my desired location. It only makes sense to get a 6-50 outlet installed, right? And not spend the extra $ on an expensive run of 14-50-capable cabling, because I don't really care that much about future-proofing since I won't be there forever.

The cost difference between installing a 14-50 and 6-50 outlet is minimal. THHN 6AWG wire is less than 50 cents/foot. Me, personally, I'd spend the extra $25 (let's assume a 50 foot run) to install the 14-50 outlet, since then it can be used for welders, RVs, and plenty of other things, instead of a 6-50. I know you're not staying there forever, but it sounds like your landlord is pretty cool, so I'd do them a solid and put an outlet in that could be used for dang near anything in the future... It's only an extra couple bucks, so I'd rather do it right. But that's just me.
 
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kkillebrew

Banned
Jun 23, 2019
401
124
austin, tx
It was inevitable with Tesla's growth outside the US. NEMA 6-50 supports a three phase feed whereas the 14-50 and 14-30 do not. Outside the US residential three phase power seems to be common whereas here three phase is typically reserved for commercial installations.

Really no big deal, and there should be no significant cost increase since all your wiring technician needs to do is ignore that flat middle connector and wire the ground to the round.
 

CrayZ1

Banned
Jan 14, 2020
276
188
Horsetown USA
That is a very irritating aspect of the US EV sellers. They do not acknowledge the existence of 3-ph power.
To compound their error, most do not recognize 277 vac as a common single phase source in the US for commercial buildings. Most your parking lot and interior lighting is 277 vac. IIRC, the HPWC can be set for 277 which is very cool, since your other options for work are 120 and 208. WAY faster on 277 and less wire gauge needed.
 

user212_nr

Active Member
Aug 26, 2019
1,407
740
US
A relevant question to this thread:

I rent a house and will probably be there for ~3 more years before we build our dream house. My landlord gave me permission to have a circuit/outlet of my choice installed for charging. Our 200A panel is actually quite a long run from my desired location. It only makes sense to get a 6-50 outlet installed, right? And not spend the extra $ on an expensive run of 14-50-capable cabling, because I don't really care that much about future-proofing since I won't be there forever.

If you get a discount or doing it yourself.
 

zannman

Member
May 15, 2019
133
101
Ohio
A relevant question to this thread:

I rent a house and will probably be there for ~3 more years before we build our dream house. My landlord gave me permission to have a circuit/outlet of my choice installed for charging. Our 200A panel is actually quite a long run from my desired location. It only makes sense to get a 6-50 outlet installed, right? And not spend the extra $ on an expensive run of 14-50-capable cabling, because I don't really care that much about future-proofing since I won't be there forever.

I've gone the direction of the 6-50 for my installations, and the main reason is that it's more common for people with typical garage equipment like Air Compressors, Welders, etc. to enhance the "workshop" aspect of the garage. Cost savings was a nice bonus, although my old 32A J1772 EVSE also has a 6-50 plug.

I still purchased both 6-50 and 14-50 adapters for my Gen 2 mobile connector, because I've more often found "RV" style power posts in public areas as my only valid 240V source (that would require my own EVSE).
 

eladts

Member
Jul 31, 2016
738
989
Brookline, MA
It was inevitable with Tesla's growth outside the US. NEMA 6-50 supports a three phase feed whereas the 14-50 and 14-30 do not. Outside the US residential three phase power seems to be common whereas here three phase is typically reserved for commercial installations.

Really no big deal, and there should be no significant cost increase since all your wiring technician needs to do is ignore that flat middle connector and wire the ground to the round.

NEMA 6-50 is certainly not a three phase plug. Indeed, L1 and L2 can be wired to two phases of a three phase feed, but this is also true for NEMA 14-50. Also, Tesla sold in North America cannot take three phase AC. In markets where Teslas are able to take three phase AC, IEC 60309 plugs are used for that. NEMA plugs are used mostly in North America.
 
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linux-works

Active Member
Dec 23, 2019
1,609
3,215
mtn view, ca
You just paid over$40k, is $100 a big deal? Also, the plug, as mine has, will out last a car, maybe out last 5 cars. Much cheaper to get it right the first time.

not everyone OWNS their house. I am going to be renting for a while and I'm going to have to talk to the next landlord about getting an outlet installed. I expect cheapness (all landlords have that characteristic, sigh). if I can give them an A/B cost where one is much lower, at least I can get SOMETHING installed.

if you own, yeah, do it properly. but not everyone is lucky enough to be able to afford their own home (difficulty: bay area prices)
 

Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,113
7,109
Boise, ID
Using a NEMA 14-50 outlet for EV charging means there is no risk of open neutral unlike with RVs.
Uh...what? It's the opposite. Using 14-50 outlets creates the risk of an open neutral. If you use 6-XX series outlets that are 240V only without a neutral, the neutral pin/wire is just never there, so there is no risk of it having a problem or of anyone trying to use it. Choosing to use a neutral-required outlet type in this application where it's not necessary creates that requirement that someone needs to make that extra wiring connection that could be loose or disconnected or whatever, and then because it's that outlet type, someone may try to plug something else in that runs into a problem with the bad neutral.
 
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yuhong

Member
Mar 11, 2018
276
105
Burnaby, BC
Uh...what? It's the opposite. Using 14-50 outlets creates the risk of an open neutral. If you use 6-XX series outlets that are 240V only without a neutral, the neutral pin/wire is just never there, so there is no risk of it having a problem or of anyone trying to use it. Choosing to use a neutral-required outlet type in this application where it's not necessary creates that requirement that someone needs to make that extra wiring connection that could be loose or disconnected or whatever, and then because it's that outlet type, someone may try to plug something else in that runs into a problem with the bad neutral.
It would only affect things that use the neutral, and EV charging don't use it.
 

dmurphy

Woof.
Dec 7, 2018
3,474
4,682
New Jersey - Morris County
EXACTLY!!!! See? Since EV charging doesn't use it, there is NO reason to use an outlet that includes it, which creates that possibility to mess up that neutral connection. You eliminate that risk by choosing an outlet without that possibility.

I don't see that open-neutral risk as any more severe than anything else in the home or dwelling, right?

The reason I would install a 14-50 instead of a 6-50 is about reusability for other-than-EV-charging purposes. Especially RVs/campers, etc.
 
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Rocky_H

Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2015
6,113
7,109
Boise, ID
The reason I would install a 14-50 instead of a 6-50 is about reusability for other-than-EV-charging purposes. Especially RVs/campers, etc.
That is a valid reason, if you are going to use the outlet for something else that needs the neutral, obviously. But I was responding to the nonsensical suggestion of choosing an outlet with a neutral connection for EV charging because he said that eliminates the risk of a bad neutral. That's the opposite of truth. If you aren't going to use the neutral anyway, you eliminate that risk by not having it at all.
 
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zannman

Member
May 15, 2019
133
101
Ohio
Just stating the obvious differently than above. Open neutral is only a risk when trying to use 120VAC via one leg or the other of the 14-50. It's not really a big risk in your home breaker box because every 120V neutral home-runs back to the main panel. It would be in an RV, however, because it's converting 240V to two 120V and counting on this neutral splitting the phase voltages correctly.
 
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dmurphy

Woof.
Dec 7, 2018
3,474
4,682
New Jersey - Morris County
That is a valid reason, if you are going to use the outlet for something else that needs the neutral, obviously. But I was responding to the nonsensical suggestion of choosing an outlet with a neutral connection for EV charging because he said that eliminates the risk of a bad neutral. That's the opposite of truth. If you aren't going to use the neutral anyway, you eliminate that risk by not having it at all.

Oh, completely agreed! The only guaranteed, sure-fire way to avoid an open neutral is to not wire a neutral at all. And even then, it's possible to have one (and possibly, more likely even than anything after the pan) in the service drop.

Don't understand the other person's logic... at all :)
 

JPWhite

Member
Jun 2, 2012
170
161
Hendersonville TN
Typical Labor for this type of job by an electrician could be in the $2k - $5k range.

Sounds high just for labor. I bought the parts for a 6-50 install and when an electrician was wiring my crawlspace for a sump/dehumidifier I asked how much to install the 6-50 while he was already wiring in the same breaker panel.

I paid $50 for the incremental labor cost. I doubt a electrician would charge more than few hundred bucks for making a dedicated visit for the same job.
 

Bill25cycle

Member
Mar 31, 2011
103
68
Hey Tom, that most certainly is the Leviton that I also had bought and installed. It has been found to be less than appropriate for our needs, overheat and melting potential. I went with the Bryant from Zoro, it cost more but less than the highly recommended Hubbell. Fortunately, the Bryant is also made by Hubbell, so no loss in quality. If you decide to continue with the Leviton, it is recommended to make a routine of checking the connections for looseness.

See this thread: NEMA 14-50 Plug Meltdown / Near Fire


I'm really getting sick of Leviton in general. Home Depot as a for instance sells plenty of the Leviton Crap. Pull chain basement ceiling lights break after 4 on-off cycles, after REPEATED replacement - meaning nearly 100%
of them are Junk.

(The Legrande stuff at Lowe's is also made in China, but of a better quality).

What gets me is there is NOTHING in the new 2020 NEC addressing this. They have plenty of other really silly requirements - one of which is banning NEMA 14-60 plug-in circuits for the expected avalanche of 48 ampere fixed in place, or portable charging facilities (for all the new ev's coming out with 48 ampere chargers) - limiting such to either 30 or 50 ampere receptacles max. No matter that the 50 ampere receptacles from Leviton seem to melt down. Or that you can't have adjustable 'fixed in place' EVSE's any longer. Underwriter's Laboratories has been SUSPECT for years, as a for instance, this Leviton Total Crap gets a listing. They must have insisted on a Blind, Deaf and Dumb tester.

As far as the 6-50 or 14-50 debate, I think FORD has standardized on the 14-50 for their 'occasional use cord', so that means that the 14-50 receptacles will win, just like VHS supplanted the superior Betamax. Being best has nothing to do with most popular.

Many EV drivers to the boonies stop at camp grounds with 14-50, and TT-30 , ( but no 6-50 ) receptacles... I vote for 14-50 in the interest of standardization even though I hear the complaints of added cost..

But whatever you decide to install, avoid the 'firestarter' branded receptacles.
 
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