DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum

DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum (
-   Plumbing Forum (
-   -   Hot Water Heater (

guyod 01-24-2008 09:51 AM

Hot Water Heater

I'm about to donate my hot water heater to mythbusters to blow up.
but its not even any good for that since it doesn't work.

I checked the thermostat and elements and everything seems to be working fine but its just not heating the water. I am showing 240V at both elements.
I tested the elements with a continuity tester both were fine the top element is only about a month old. I took out the bottom element and there was some build up between the rods but i cleaned that out.

I had a frozen pipe that burst on the outlet side of the hot water heater. It was in crawl space and did not realize it for about a day. I thought i solved the problem why the water was not getting hot, it was all leaking out. but i fixed the leak and still no hot water..

I dont know what else to check.. The heater is only a couple years ago and i hope i dont have to replace it..

Any suggestions?

theboomboomcars 01-24-2008 10:54 AM

I don't have any experience with water heaters, but I have chased quite a few electrical circuits in cars. But since you have power to the eater, the elements are checking out, but still have no hot water I would guess that there is a problem with the switch. It seems it just isn't turning on, since if it did you would get hot water.

Again I have no experience with water heaters, I don't even know what the parts are, but with my electrical experience this is what I would think the problem would be. Either that or an internal wire somewhere.

glennjanie 01-24-2008 11:12 AM

Hey Justin:
We may be looking at a failure in the thermostat; see if you can tell when they are open or closed.
Another possibility is the 'dip tube' may have coroded away. You'll find it on the cold water side where it is supposed to take the incomming water straight to the bottom of the heater, keeping the hot water on top for instant use. Turn the water off, take the cold line off, stick your finger down in the hole, bend the finger to wedge it in and pull up. The Dip tube should come out with your finger, Or you may feel the end of the tube where it is broken off. Of course, there is always the possibility that an inexperienced installer noticed it, thought it was part of the packing and threw it away.
Please let us know how it turns out for you.

guyod 01-24-2008 11:15 AM

Thanks for the reply.
I there is 240v going to the element. so it is getting power. It doesn't make any sense. the only thing i can think of is that its not getting full wattage. which i guess it would be the switches problem? This is so weird.. I think I'm going to take the element out and see if it gets hot.. if you dont hear from me for a while i have probably been electrocuted ha ha

guyod 01-24-2008 11:21 AM

I checked water from the PR valve on the side and on the bottom both cold. so that should rule out the dip tube right?

CraigFL 01-24-2008 11:39 AM


Originally Posted by guyod (Post 14967)

...I am showing 240V at both elements....

My only concern would be that they are 120V elements?? Otherwise, if they have the voltage directly at the element and they are not heating up, the element is bad. They should measure between 10 and 20 ohms if they are good.

guyod 01-24-2008 11:57 AM

my bad it was the element i must not of took the wires off the element when i tested it. . the element is only like a month old and i got the extended life one so i was more focused on the bottom element... off to fight with H D to see if i can get another one under warranty..

thanks for the advice

a little bit of advice. never install the new elements that curl back. i could not pull it back out cause it got bent out a little. i had a hell of a time trying to stick a screw driver in there to bend it back in..

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:12 AM.