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$1,500 for a NEMA 14-30 line - yikes!

$1,500 for a NEMA 14-30 line - yikes!

I live in the Seattle, WA area, and I have sourced several bids for my NEMA 14-30 line (went with the 30A circuit instead of 50A due to only having 100A on my main breaker). Since it's a condo in a quadplex with a shared yard and carport, I am running part of the line/conduit through a trench outside. ~$1,500 is the best quote I have gotten out of 5. Is this typical for others in the area?

It's about a 40-foot run and half of that is underground (trench will be dug by me).

JustSaying | April 12, 2018

we put in a 14-50 with a 60 amp breaker. we have 100 amp service and the 60 amp breaker looks like a double size breaker. They made room on the panel by putting in a couple of what looked like a couple of mini breakers.$1500 for trenched forty foot run, we paid $600 for a hook up on the other side of the wall.
how deep do you have to trench to comply to code?
BTW, I am a retired bean counter and not an electrician.

Alex_SD | April 12, 2018

How on earth did you get a licensed electrician to install a 60-amps breaker with a NEMA 14-50 outlet??
This outlet has a rating of 50 amps MAX! It's dangerous (and illegal)!

Good thing that the M3 won't allow charging at more than 32 amps even with a NEMA 14-50...

JustSaying | April 12, 2018

Opps the 60 am breaker was hooked up to a $500 tesla gen 2 wall connector now charging at 48 amps. I forgot about that critical part. I will go back to counting beans.

gballant4570 | April 12, 2018

$1500 is very high. Assume 100' cable, double 30 amp breaker, and outlet hardware, materials less than $200. Its been awhile since I put mine in, so my prices are an estimate, but the work (in an bldg with an unfinished interior) was easy, about 30 minutes.

rdavis | April 12, 2018

I would think the cable requirement to run in a trench would be different than the cable you're running in a wall... could the cost be associated to material cost difference to run "in ground" in lieu of "in wall"?

rdavis | April 12, 2018

Also, since you have 5 quotes... and $ 1500 is the cheapest, I'm going to say there is more to this than the "normal" installation.

gballant4570 | April 12, 2018

Direct bury cable is higher than above ground cable, but not double. Its easy enough to ads pvc conduit anyhow - I'd use direct bury in a conduit. Might add $75 to materials. Go to the Lowes and price it out.....

ptcurt | April 12, 2018

If you've handy and/or know anyone that knows conduit and electrical, just read up and do it yourself.

gballant4570 | April 12, 2018

BTW, if I had a 100 amp main load center and was planning to add Tesla charging, I'd put my money into a load center upgrade. They'll likely charge about $3000 for that, and the charging circuit price will just about disappear in there. The high price for the charging circuit may be due to small job size.

gballant4570 | April 12, 2018

BTW, if I had a 100 amp main load center and was planning to add Tesla charging, I'd put my money into a load center upgrade. They'll likely charge about $3000 for that, and the charging circuit price will just about disappear in there. The high price for the charging circuit may be due to small job size.

arnoulelec | April 12, 2018

Show the Quote with the parts list so we can see where the expense is.Just throwing out a quote and the length of the trench is not enough information

12Brent | April 12, 2018

Disagree with the comment about upgrading 100 amp service. That is entirely case dependant. We have 100 amp service and overnight we average a draw of less than 2 amps. Pretty sure we can spare 32 amps for the car to drive. If you draw more amps overnight reduce charge rate to 20 amps, or so.

Bryan.whitton | April 12, 2018

100 amp service is fine for this application. You cannot put direct bury conductors in this application in all likelihood. If they are like here in Silicon Valley, EMT or PVC will need to be 18" deep. Rigid conduit needs 6" of depth.
If the trench is under where a car can drive over it. requirements may be different. I don't have my NEC book with me at this time. 40 feet of trenching with a permitted job could be rather expensive. Also with the distance the conductors may need to be oversized as well.

Anthonygonsalvesjr | April 12, 2018

12Brent is right. I also have a 100 amp panel. At night I charge my car at 32 and if needed I can lower.

Uncle Paul | April 12, 2018

Don't forget you can get a 30% tax credit for installing EV charging at your home. Might make it more reasonable.

chuxu.2015 | April 12, 2018

@OP I am also in Seattle area. I got two quotes for installing a NEMA14-50 outlet in my garage (max 200amps): $800 and $680. I picked the cheaper one and I think they did a great job!

chuxu.2015 | April 12, 2018

one factor is that my panel has a free slot - it requires two slots, so they merged two other slots into one so there are two slots for my 240V outlet. And I didnt ask to install long wires across the garage - I installed the outlet on the right rear side of the car - against recommendation but it works regardless.

Silver2K | April 12, 2018

i had a 14/50 NEMA installed on a 40A breaker for free by my solar guys in the middle of the job. he asked me to buy the box and breaks and he would just put it in for me :)

he installed it after the price was agreed upon and contract was signed.

johnse | April 13, 2018

@amygstehr

I would recommend Here 2 Wire: 425-335-1407

I’ve had them do 2 jobs for me. One was a simple NEMA 14-50 plus a couple of normal outlets. The other was a full panel upgrade with major rewiring in the house we purchased.

They also know the ins and outs around EVSE installation...such as not charging sales tax on that portion (if that’s still in effect).

Mahodges | April 13, 2018

This could be expensive depending on where you live. On average, this should only cost about $700-$1000, especially if you are trenching the 40 ft yourself. If you are quoted higher, then get another quote or bargain with your electrician.