Tip & How-To about Rheem Water Heaters

Water Heater not producing Hot Water

Most likely the Element/elements are burned out. these are easily replaced.Disconnect power to Water Heater, drain heater from bottom drain valve, unscrew or unbolt element/s. Replace with same type. Refill heater, check for any leaks around new element/s, turm power on.

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My hot water heater tripped the circuit breaker on the house panel. I reset the circuit breaker but the heater still would not begin to heat. I drained the tank and found one burned out heating element. I went ahead and replaced both upper and lower. Still not hot water. I used a fluke meter and verified power to the outlet and the top element and thermostat it was good. However when checking the bottom element with the meter there was no voltage. I purchased and replace both to and bottom thermostats. Still the heater does not heat. The unit is only 3-4 years old installed by the builder after the first one failed after being in the house only 9 months. Is there something else I should check before replacing with a new one?? I'm about 4hr and $50 into this project.


Tough problem here. Most dual element heaters share one line. if this is the case and you have power on the top and none on the bottom I would check the connecting wires one to another. also check the settings of the thermostats. They may be adjusted all the way down. If the wires and connections are good I would recommend ohm testing the new elements. I have burned elements out by introducing cold water to very hot coils (forgetting to turn the water on after flipping the breaker)
Never forget that calcium buildup will short the element. If touching on the bottom you will burn it up.
If this does not help try borrowing hot water from neighbors ;)
Good luck
Joe

Feb 15, 2011 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

my water heater is leaking cold water from the bottom. How do I fix it? its a Richmond miser. Model # 8v30-1


First shut off power then remove acess cover and carefully move insulation out of the way so you can see around elements.Check to see if leak is coming from around element.If it is determine what type of element you have. Either screw in or bolted in. Both have thick rubber gaskets that can be replaced by draing water heater and removing element then install new gasket and reinstall element.
To drain heater shut off valve on incoming cold water supply line ,make sure electric power is off. Connect drain hose to drain valve and put other end to floor drain or sump basin.You can open faucet on hot side near by to prevent vacumn and drain. If you have screw in type disconnect wires,marking them for reattachment,then use large open end wrench or pipe wrench on hex section of element and turn to left to remove. If you have bolt in element spray bolts with wd-40 or similar and carefully loosen bolts then disconnect wires and remove element.install new gasket and reverse to reinstall. I would recommend that you replace elements at this time if you are sure this was the source of the leak.
If you don't think it's leaking around elements then check fitting on both water lines to water heater to be sure they are not leaking and seeping down thru insulation and leaking out of the bottom of heater. Next check around drain valve for leak and if it's leaking you can try tightening it a little or replace it with 3/4 x2 brass nipple and 3/4 inch female iron pipe boiler drain. Use teflon tape or pipe joint compound on all threaded connections.
After you have eliminated all other sources for leak then it is probably the tank itself. If it is less then six years old the tank should still be covered under warrenty. Most warrenties will give you a new heater but installation will not be covered unless you have extended service coverage.
I hope this helps you some. Thank you

Dec 27, 2010 | Audiovox Richmond 6EM30-2 30-Gallon 6-Year...

1 Answer

how do I change the heating element on my 50 gallon electric Reliance 501 hot water heater? Where can I get the heating elements?


Buy elements at local hardware store or home center, like Lowes
Look at label on side of tank.
Label shows element wattage.
Element is also printed on end of element in tiny letters-numbers.
Typical elements are 4500 and 5500 watts.
Tank needs 10 gauge wire and 30 amp breaker for 5500 watt element.

Water heaters are fully repairable by homeowner.

1) Have you tested water heater to see if element is problem? You need cheap multi-meter from Home Depot.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-electric-problems-with-water-heater.html

2) To change element
a) turn off power
b) drain water from drain valve ... once it starts draining, loosen element slightly while tank still has weight to hold against you turning element wrench.
Here's what to do if water heater won't drain:
http://waterheatertimer.org/Water-heater-will-not-drain.html
c) open covers on tank, remove element using element-wrench from hardware store or home center.
If element won't come out:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-remove-old-water-heater-element.html
d) Clean out tank if needed.
e) Replace element.
f) Fill tank entirely with water before turning on power or element will burn out.
g) Once tank is filled, and water flows steady out of tub spout, turn on power.
Each steps above is shown on following link:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-clean-sediment-out-of-electric-water-heater.html

3) You need to buy some things:
Screw-in type (not bolt-in type) Element that matches wattage on tank label. New Element comes with washer.
Inexpensive Element wrench.
Inexpensive multimeter if you are going to test parts first.
Some pieces of pipe and hose if tank sediment needs to be cleaned out.
Washing machine hose if tank will not drain (return after job is done).

4) Also:
You need flat tip and phillips screwdriver.
Lighting to work on tank
Some WD-40 if element is stuck in place.
Garden hose to drain tank.
Shop vac and duct tape if you need to vacuum out sediment.
Tarp to protect floor and carpet
Maybe a knife to cut back insulation on wire if wire is burned at element.

Web links above go through entire process step by step.
Add a comment if you need more help, I'll be back around 5 CST

Nov 30, 2010 | RELIANCE ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

1 Answer

My Reliance water heater suddenly produced only luke warmwarm water. I checked for power to the elements. Top one had nothing, bottom one had 110. I replaced the top element (which looked ok.) (power off, drained tank, pulled and replaced it, refilled tank, power on.) No change. Read up on water heaters, found I would have only a third tank of hot water if the bottom element was out, likely from sediment reaching it. Flushed the tank for an hour, pulled the bottom element (which had a big spot of corrosion 3/4 through the metal) and replaced it with old top element that looked good. I turned the power on for 15 minutes before remembering that I hadn't turned the water back on. Power off, filled tank, power on. (Hope that didn't hurt something.) No hot water at all. Replaced both thermostats. No heat yet, but top element shows 220 and bottom one has no power. What is wrong?


Lower element will always test 120V to ground since thermostats turn off one hot wire.

Listed below are suspects in order of ease.

1) Check that hot water is not running out of TP valve and down into a drain.
This will cause water heater to run all the time but not be able to keep up.

2) Test elements before replacing anything:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html

3) Test electricity to water heater:
http://waterheatertimer.org/Test-electricity-to-water-heater.html

4) Replace both thermostats.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermostat-on-electric-water-heater.html

5) Final thing would be full troubleshoot:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-electric-problems-with-water-heater.html

Add a comment for more free help.
Also take advantage of fixya phone service.
For a price, expert speaks with you over phone while you work on water heater or any do-it-yourself project.
Fixya is always less expensive than a service call.

Sep 29, 2010 | RELIANCE ELECTRIC WATER HEATER

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