Re: Electric Hot Water Heater
Posted by Chris on January 15, 2004 at 21:15:29:
In response to Re: Electric Hot Water Heater
: : I have a 40 gal. Whirlpool electric water heater .. A couple days ago, a water line problem down the street from me caused my local water co. to cut the water off to my house for several hours while I was at work. As a result, I had no hot water after about 36 hours. Upon checking, it was eveident that my upper element was bad, so I replaced it. Now comes the problem .. I checked the upper and lower thermostat using a continuity test - and both checked okay. So did the lower element. The probelm is that I have electricity at the upper element and thermostat (240V), but I can't detect absolutely anything (electricity wise) at the bottom - thermostat or element. What would cause this?? Any help greatly appreciated.

: Chris,
: On electric water heaters, they commonly have two heating elements that work in turns. First the top element heats up the top of the tank, then power goes to the lower element. If the lower element is out, only the top of the tank gets heated. If the top element isn't working, there will be no hot water.

: Sometimes the Reset button needs to be pushed or reset. If this doesn't get the element working, use a continuity tester to determine if the element has shorted out. Replacement of the element may be needed.
: Terry Love

Terry -

Thanks so much for he reply .. Even if the elements work in turns, should I not be seeing a 240V reading reading regardless (forgive my ignorance? I've checked the reset button - no problem there. I did a continuity check on the bottom element and thermostat - both checked okay, but I'm still not reading any juice coming in to either (I have replaced both thermostats and the upper element just this evening). I guess my fear in not reading any juice at the bottom is that there is a short somewhere that coudl potentially cause a fire?? Again - thanks in advance for your help.

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