National Electrical Installation Standards

Standards as High as Your Own

Monday, October 31, 2022


Hi CQD, I installed a 2-pole 40-amp breaker in an unfinished basement breaker panel. I ran 8/3 NM-B through the basement and up inside an interior garage wall to a box with a 14-50R flush receptacle to match what comes on most EV chargers. The homeowner purchased the EV charger which had the 14-50P plug on it, instead of getting the 32-amp charger we originally discussed. The 32-amp charger was the correct one for the circuit I installed. The inspector stated the circuit was not sized for the larger EV charging unit. The manufacturer's installation instructions for the larger charger requires a 50-amp circuit and 50A breaker. Technically I only installed the circuit and receptacle, so the inspector should only check my installation. The product getting plugged in should not factor into the inspection outcome. (1) Is it permissible to install a 50A receptacle on a 40A rated circuit? (2) Where does the inspector's jurisdiction end?  

Thank you, Rich Cressotti


Hi Rich, thanks for the information and the questions.


Regarding the question on circuit and receptacle rating. Both Section 210.21(B)(3) and Table 210.21(B)(3) permit a 50A rated receptacle to be supplied by a 40A rated circuit. The receptacle and circuit rating combination you describe would be permitted.


Regarding the jurisdiction of the electrical inspector, this becomes and AHJ determination based on the information they have at the time of the inspection, and any State or local rules.

ABOUT CQD: The Code Question of the Day (CQD) is NECA and ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR Magazine’s flagship National Electrical Code (NEC®) public forum for the industry, sponsored by EATON. The daily distribution of Q&A generates a lively dialogue and shares relative Code-based practical responses.

SUBMIT YOUR CODE QUESTION: Click here to submit a question to for inclusion in an upcoming edition of the Code Question of the Day, or email

CHARLIE TROUT: Charles M. Trout, better known as Charlie, was a nationally known NEC® expert and author. He served on several NEC® technical committees and is past chairman of CMP-12. In 2006 Charlie was awarded the prestigious Coggeshall Award for outstanding contributions to the electrical contracting industry, codes and standards development, and technical training. Even though Charlie passed away in October of 2015, his work continues in spirit. NECA continues to maintain this question forum for its many subscribers in memory and recognition of all his significant contributions to making the NEC what it is today.

NECA STANDARDS: NECA publishes the National Electrical Installation Standards™ (NEIS™), a series of ANSI-approved performance and quality standards for electrical construction. NEIS can be purchased in the NECA Store in three formats: a printed or  PDF download of a standard or, as an  annual subscription service.

NECA SAFETY PRODUCTS & PUBLICATIONS: NECA produces electrical safety publications and products for the industry including jobsite safety guides, handbooks and resource kits. View a full listing of available resources and products »

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Unless the question requests a response based on a specific edition, all answers are based on the latest edition of NFPA 70® National Electrical Code®.

This correspondence is not a formal interpretation of the NEC® and any responses expressed to the questions are opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of NECA, NFPA, the NEC Correlating Committee any Code-making panel or other electrical technical committee. In addition, this correspondence is neither intended, nor should it be relied upon, to provide professional consultation or services. 

UPDATE YOUR SUBSCRIPTION PREFERENCES: Subscribe or Unsubscribe from this list.