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Old 10-02-2012, 01:34 AM   #1
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Code requirements for neutral conductor in a NEMA 14 receptacle?


I'm in a discussion with a fellow electric vehicle enthusiast about installing an outlet for charging. The vehicle under consideration prefers a 14-50R receptacle for charging, but the vehicle only requires a hot-hot-ground configuration for charging. The reason 14-50R's are preferred is that most campgrounds, etc. have them versus the less-common 6-50R.

My fellow enthusiast suggested he would simply pull 6-2 w/ ground, but connect it to a 14-50R. He suggests that it is NEC compliant -- that there is no code requirement that the neutral wire be connected in a NEMA 14 series receptacle.

After briefly looking through the NEC, I can't find anything (very quickly, of course) that suggests a neutral must be connected. It's bad practice, of course, because 120V loads won't work without it, and not having it connected could confuse the hell out of someone who tried to plug another appliance into it... but is it against code?

My suggestion is that it would be better -- if he were going to half-ass it -- to install a 6-50R, then make an adapter cord from 14-50R to 6-50P specifically for that vehicle, so the permanent installation is done properly.

If it is against code, which section would prohibit the connection of a 14-50R to hot-hot-ground only wiring?

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Old 10-02-2012, 01:49 AM   #2
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Code requirements for neutral conductor in a NEMA 14 receptacle?


The code requires that we follow manufacturers installation instructions and the UL listing. I suspect the instructions for the receptacle say, attach neutral wire, and don't say the wire is optional. Similarly, the language in the UL white book will tell you what uses are listed. Either source is definitive.

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Old 10-02-2012, 09:59 AM   #3
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Code requirements for neutral conductor in a NEMA 14 receptacle?


Quote:
Originally Posted by flasherz View Post
I'm in a discussion with a fellow electric vehicle enthusiast about installing an outlet for charging. The vehicle under consideration prefers a 14-50R receptacle for charging, but the vehicle only requires a hot-hot-ground configuration for charging. The reason 14-50R's are preferred is that most campgrounds, etc. have them versus the less-common 6-50R.

My fellow enthusiast suggested he would simply pull 6-2 w/ ground, but connect it to a 14-50R. He suggests that it is NEC compliant -- that there is no code requirement that the neutral wire be connected in a NEMA 14 series receptacle.

After briefly looking through the NEC, I can't find anything (very quickly, of course) that suggests a neutral must be connected. It's bad practice, of course, because 120V loads won't work without it, and not having it connected could confuse the hell out of someone who tried to plug another appliance into it... but is it against code?

My suggestion is that it would be better -- if he were going to half-ass it -- to install a 6-50R, then make an adapter cord from 14-50R to 6-50P specifically for that vehicle, so the permanent installation is done properly.

If it is against code, which section would prohibit the connection of a 14-50R to hot-hot-ground only wiring?
Adapters are quite common in the RV industry due to the many different electrical supply situations that confront Rver's at campgrounds. The adapter you speak of is quite commonly used for welders and RV's. I don't see a code viloation IMO. I would much prefer the supply receptacle to be configured correctly with the neutral attached and an adapter specifically for use with the charging of the car.
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