enter image description hereI want to install a 50 amp circuit breaker in the service entrance box and put the 4 wire 220 outlet for my welder right below the service entrance. I will be using a 50 ft extension to reach my welder when I use it. Is there any concerns with this type of installation? It is too difficult to run the heavy cable through the walls and over the ceiling to the location where my welder is located, but I don't use it that often. The service entrance is only about 3 ft off the floor next to the garage door and the entrance to the main house. Are there any potential issues with such an installation?

  • 1
    What else is currently in the service entrance box? Can you upload a picture of it? Apr 11 '19 at 2:33
  • Can you post photos of the service-entrance box please? Apr 11 '19 at 2:38
  • Not sure what you want to know about the inside of the box. There is room for about five or six more double circuit breakers. It is flush mounted into the sheetrock of the wall about 3 ft off the floor and nearly 24" tall. There are access holes at the bottom of the box that I would use to run #8 wire cable to the outlet box about 6" below
    – JayDubyah
    Apr 11 '19 at 3:37
  • BTW I don't see any way to enter pictures here
    – JayDubyah
    Apr 11 '19 at 4:01
  • To enter pics, edit your question, put your cursor where you want the pic, and look at the top of the edit box. See this ---- B I chainlink, " {} [mountains and sun]. ----- the Mountains and sun icon is "insert picture". Apr 12 '19 at 0:38

Panels at your service entrance can be all sorts of things. Meter only, meter and main breaker, meter and several breakers and spaces, etc.

From your comment it sounds like yours is the kind with several breaker spaces.

Sure, throw a 2-pole breaker in there, come out a knockout with either conduit or cable, and go down to a junction box with a 14-50 receptacle. Myself, I would use a steel box and steel conduit nipple to connect them, then use THWN-2 wire (omitting ground since the steel conduit is the ground).

You'll need #6 copper wire for this, either THWN-2 wire in conduit, or 6/3UF cable or other outdoor-rated cable w/ground. Don't use Romex/NM.

You can use #8 if you want to, but then you'll need to make the breaker 40A. That is legal on a 50A socket because of a Code exception. Given the very short wire run, I wouldn't bother scrimping on the cost of wire.

The cable around to your welder needs to be #6 cordage such as SJOOW. If you already bought #8, change the breaker to 40A. You cannot make extension cords out of NM, UF or any other cable meant for use inside walls or burial. It is too brittle and not made to resist physical damage.

  • Is there any problem with it being located so close to the service box, or in a traffic area? I have an extension cable that is a 4-wire cable similar to a 50 amp RV drop cord. I doubt that I ever exceed 20 amps when welding anyway. When I use it, the cars will be out of the garage and the garage door open so I can work outside on the apron without splattering all over
    – JayDubyah
    Apr 12 '19 at 13:06
  • The cord on the welder is only four feet long so will be a pain without an extension cord. But the welder is on wheels and fairly easy to move. Thanks for your help
    – JayDubyah
    Apr 12 '19 at 13:08
  • Why not use romex? The panel is inside? Jay locating the box under the panel is ok I usually do like Harper suggests with a nipple and thhn wire but you can also use romex or UF with clamps, I like raco brand insiders as they are quick and like your case it could be done with less sheetrock repair if an old work box was used, however an old work box on a large receptacle is not a good idea.
    – Ed Beal
    Apr 12 '19 at 13:32
  • I agree that I could use romex, but I have a short piece of 4-wire #8 that is dying to be used. And I have clamps. Yes the service box is inside the garage, inside the walls covered with sheetrock. I am planning to use a 4" old-work box, but will cut the opening as close as possible to the exact size of the box to reduce breaking the sheetrock as the plug is exercised (plug/unplug). Will that work?
    – JayDubyah
    Apr 13 '19 at 14:04

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