Occasionally when I turn on my hot water faucet it sounds like air is hissing at me and the water is spitting out. My water is from a well and the holding tank is underneath the house. It just does this on occasion, what could cause this.
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Re: air escaping from hot water faucet
It sounds like you are getting air in the system. Generally the only way this would happen is if the pump is sucking air. The water level may be very low in the well. This is of concern also because the pump is water lubricated (if it is a submersable) and will sustain damge quickly if run dry.
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sounds like an element is burned out. if your water heater lost its water, probably from siphoning, and the power was on, then it most likely burned out the element.
you will need to replace. replace both the upper and lower elements at the same time, don't just replace the one that's burned out.
turn off the power to the water heater, be sure to check with a volt meter to make sure its off. drain the water heater.
remove the wires from the elements, not the thermostat, and remove the element. on the newer water heaters they screw in. take that with you to the store so you can match it. get 2 of them.
be sure to use the new rubber washers that come with the elements and make sure the threads on the heater are clean. be careful not to drop or bang the elements against the heater when installing, they can be fragile.
do not over tighten! snug is good enough. when you get both elements installed, start filling the heater with water. if you have any leaks, tighten the elements a little more. now hook up the wires you removed from the elements. doesn't matter what position or screw they hook to.
start bleeding the air from the water heater, turn on the hot water on a faucet in the house, when it quits spurting air and runs water smoothly turn it off, and turn the power back on to the heater. use your amp meter to make sure. initially there will only be power at the top element 220v to 240v
make sure the thermostats are set evenly, (125* setting) if the settings are mismatched (one at 125 and one at 135) the heater will not function properly.
If the lower heating element burns out the upper element will heat the top part of the tank then shutoff.
homw depot/lowes etc should carry elements.
1 turn off breaker, remove element access cover (the 2 panels on the front of the heater) test for electricity at the reset button ( uppermost device in upper panel) to make sure power is off.
2 turn off water (I usually turn off the cold water main to stop water cross feeding into hot supply line back into heater)
3 disconnect the 2 wires on the lower element, test with continuity tester. shhould be no continuity between terminals and tank, but around 10 ohms between the 2 terminals.
Check the thermostat for continuity if tank is cold thermostat should be closed ie zero ohms across the 2 terminals.
If stat is bad replace stat; disconnect wires push it up out of the spring clip insert new stat reconnect.
If element is bad:
connect garden hose to tank drain valve, open tank drain valve turn water main on to clear rust sediment and get water flowing.
Next remove filter screen from a hot water faucet then turn on ( a hot faucet upstairs or higher than tank drain). Now turn water main off, air will now go in through hot faucet and tank will drain, takes about an hour.
Use a water heater element wrench about$10 to remove element(s)
make sure no bits of rubber gasket are left in element opening- dig em out with a screwdriver if needed.
Insert new element with its gasket and tighten.
DO NOT TURN ON ELECTRICITY!
BE SURE TO FILL WATER HEATER WITH WATER !
Turn water main back on -air will come out of the hot faucet for several minutes. When water runs without any air sputtering, turn off faucet and replace the faucet filter screen.
check element(s) for leaks.
turn breaker back on.
if your on a private well, it sounds as though your loosing enough water pressure to shut the heater off,.(which is right before the water pump comes on),....tankless heaters turn on by sensing water flow, and of course off when flo stops,......water pressure tanks often need to be re-charged with air for pressure to stay even,....does your water pressure fluctuate?
A typical cause of this problem is a loose washer on the end of the stem.
Turn angle stop off on the hot water side of faucet, take hot stem out of faucet and check the washer on the end of the stem. I'll bet you find it's loose!
Absolutely no hot water indicates the top element or thermostat on the heater. Check to make sure that you have 240 volts on the top two terminals of the top thermostat. If you do then check the top element for voltage. It should also read 240 volts between the two screws. If you have 240 volts there shut off the power, drain the heater to a point below the top element and change the top element. When the element is installed turn your WATER back on and let the air bleed out of several hot faucets in the house. When the faucets stop spitting air you can turn them off. Check for leaks around the element. If you have no leaks turn the power back on the the heater and replace the covers.
That should get you 'back in hot water' in two hours.