Can I charge an EV using a Dryer Outlet?

Dryer outlet for EV charging

Updated: March 17, 2024.

Household clothes dryers are power-hungry appliances that operate on 240 volts in North America, despite regular electrical appliances operating on 120 volts. So can you charge an EV at Level 2 speeds using the same dryer outlet? Yes, actually you can, but there are some caveats to be aware of. Let’s see how it is done.

This article provides general information on this common EV charging question. Your specific plug type and wiring may be different. If unsure, please consult a licensed electrician.

NEMA 14-30 vs. NEMA 14-50

In most contemporary homes, the dryer in your laundry room is connected using a NEMA 14-30 electrical plug. This distinct design features four pins; a flat one, two circular ones, and an L-shaped pin. The NEMA 14-30 design plug is wired to a 30 amp circuit to be compliant with the Electrical Code. The NEMA 14-30 plug is also visually very similar to the NEMA 14-50 outlet that is used by most plug-in style EV chargers. However, these are not interchangeable, and a NEMA 14-50 EV charger will not plug into a NEMA 14-30 dryer outlet because the bottom pin is a different shape. This is by design because the NEMA 14-50 style plug is rated to 50 amps, and must use appropriate gauge wiring.

NEMA 14-30 vs. NEMA 14-50

How to charge an EV from a dryer outlet safely – Smart Splitters

Let’s say you are a home renter, or you are not able to invest in a hardwired installation. Can you charge from a NEMA 14-30 outlet on a daily basis? I recommend the use of a smart splitter device such as NeoCharge. I have been testing their product for several weeks, and it is a safe solution to this common problem. The smart splitter turns a single outlet into two outlets for your dryer and EV charging station. By design, it will never exceed the 30 amp rating of the NEMA 14-30 dryer outlet.

Neocharge smart splitter
Neocharge smart splitter plugged in

The dryer plugs into the primary outlet of the splitter, and the EV charger becomes a secondary device. So when the dryer is operating, the charging station is switched OFF. When the dryer is finished, the secondary plug is allowed to draw power. This avoids the hassle and wear and tear of constantly unplugging the dryer from the wall. NeoCharge offers smart splitters for NEMA 14-30 for sharing a dryer outlet with an EV, and they also offer a NEMA 14-50 splitter for installing two charging stations on a single outlet with sequential or parallel charging.

What about 14-30 to 14-50 Adapters?

There are small adapters on Amazon that convert a 14-30 plug into a 14-50 one that is physically compatible with NEMA 14-50 EV Chargers. We have even tested one ourselves here at However, the EV charger will assume it is still connected to a 50 amp circuit and may pull too much power, tripping the circuit breaker.

You must configure your EV charger to a 24 amp mode or lower. Some EV chargers like the Tesla Mobile Connector do not have selectable amp modes, so charging speeds need to be restricted inside the vehicle prior to plugging in.

These adapters can be useful in a pinch when the EVSE is specifically restricted to 24 amps or lower. However, we can not recommend using these adapter products regularly. These products will also not meet electrical code standards because they connect 50 amp devices to 30 amp outlets.

Advantages of dryer outlet charging

  • If the location of the plug is within cable reach of your vehicle, the dryer outlet can be an inexpensive way to deliver Level 2 charging speeds to your EV.
  • It may be the only option for short-term stays or renters who are unable to install dedicated hardware EV chargers or NEMA 14-50 outlets.

Downsides of charging from a dryer outlet:

  • The location of the dryer is often far from your parking spot and not optimal for EV charger placement.
  • This electrical connection is rated to 30 amps, meaning you can only safely draw 24 amps. With a purpose-built 14-50 outlet in your garage, it is possible to charge at 40 amps. (and even higher with a hardwired EV charger)
  • If using a 14-30 to 14-50 adapter you must remember to restrict your EV charger to 24 amps or lower. This can be easy to forget and trip the circuit breaker.
  • You can’t use the dryer while the EV is charging overnight


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