Water Heater thermostat problem.

Discussion in 'Water Heater Forum, Tanks' started by rayh78, Jul 7, 2011.

  1. rayh78

    rayh78 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    Location:
    Virginia
    This question is actually for a friend of mine.
    His wife complained no hot water at all. He gets home and checks. Not voltage to top element but continuity good.
    Bottom element continuity good but it has voltage to the element.
    So how can he not have at least some hot water and I thought the top element came on first?

    thanks
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    If the bottom element has continuity AND voltage, then he HAS hot water which is why the top one is turned off. From your description there is some other problem which you have NOT identified.
  3. rayh78

    rayh78 New Member

    Messages:
    78
    Location:
    Virginia
    Yes I question that. Would have to be hot water but was not.
    It ended up being the top thermostat. Went bad not heating the top element first. But somehow sending current to the bottom therm and element but not heating. Maybe not enough amps to bottom at the time?
    Anyway its working. All just sounded strange to me and always like to learn if I miss something.
    thanks
  4. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,815
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    In that case, I suspect the bottom element is also burned out and you had 120 volts of current across the terminals NOT 240. About the only way top elements burn out is when the bottom one, which does 98% of the heating, burns out and then the top one does ALL of the heating. Otherwise the top one operates so seldom they usually last "forever".
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