Jan 16

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Water Heater Element

Potential concerns for a water heater may be faulty heating element if you have electric water heater the elements can go out causing the water to be cold, most water heaters have two elements one at the top and one at the bottom to check these simply, shut off poShut Off Valvewer to the unit at the main panel. You will need a multi tester with an ohm setting place black probe on one side and red on the other side the idea here is to see if the element is passing electrical current in a full circle, if the light does not come on or the unit does not beep then most likley you have a bad element. It’s a good idea to check both of them, usually only one of them goes out. Most heating elements are readily available at your local home center or plumbing center, cost is $15-$30 depending on model. If your not confident in doing this repair, as always consult your local service professional. Remember saftey first.

Access Panel

Steps For Heating Element Removal

  • Shut off all power at power source (Usually at the main panel either outside, in the garage, or closet area depending on the year of the home).
  • Remove access cover(s), insulation if applicable and plastic cover(s).
  • Determine wich element needs to be replaced by testing as mentioned above.
  • Shut off water supply to water heater either at top of unit or at the main source.
  • Open a nearby faucet to let air into the lines to release the pressure (Doing this speeds up draining). Heating ElementPlastic Cover
  • Connect hose to water heater hose bib located at the very bottom of the tank.
  • Let tank drain completley doing this will also let all accumulated sediment to be drained out.
  • After water is all drained out, leave hose attached and turn on water at full pressure the idea is to blast sediment Heating Element Wires Removaloff the bottom of the tank so it goes out the hose.
  • Disconnect wires from element note where they go.
  • Use a heating element removal tool, you can also use crescent wrench, or adjustable pliers (Newer water heaters will require removal tool).
  • It’s a good idea to take the old to match up to the new one.
  • Don’t forget the teflon tape.

Steps For Installing A New Heating Element

  • If they matched up perfect put some plumbers tape on the threads, the new element should come with a gasket.
  • Reinstall element turning clockwise until tight.
  • Re-connect wires the same as you took off, ***DO NOT TURN POWER ON***
  • Re-install plastic cover(s), insulation and access cover(s).
  • Open nearby faucet if it was not left open.
  • Turn on the main water supply, let tank fill completley.
  • If you have filled tank completly you should not hear any water running.
  • Turn power on.
  • Job well done you will soon have hot water.

Permanent link to this article: http://911handyman.com/water-heater-problems/

1 comment

  1. Linda Otto

    Hi Jasper,
    I just left you a phone message re: hanging a tv wall mount and checking my water heater, which is in the attic space.
    I will also ask our HOA if they want you to block off the roof eaves where the pigeons are nesting.
    Please let me know when you can schedule. Thanks

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