Question about Water Heaters

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Water Heater Issues

I have a Kenmore Power Miser 9 Electric 240 voltage Water tank. I have been having issues with running out of warm/hot water in seconds. My boyfriends an electrician and checked the heating elements and reset it. A question is, this situation I'm going to explain normal. He checked the heating elements and the top element has 240 volts between both wires and when he checked the bottom element when he measured voltage measuring both wires together showed nothing, but when he measures each wire seperately it comes up as 120 volts each wire. Is this normal?

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  • Water Heaters Master
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Top element fried unless temp was met at time of test

Posted on Apr 29, 2017

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  • Water Heaters Master
  • 36,279 Answers

An electric water heater contains two elements (usually upper and lower). Normally hot water is maintained at a certain temperature to assure an immediate supply. When hot water is turned on at the fixture, the second element is turned on to boost the temperature. From your description one of the heating elements may be defective or set to incorrect temperature.

Posted on Apr 29, 2017

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6 Suggested Answers

6ya6ya
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

MNTECH
  • 1543 Answers

SOURCE: Bradford White Water Heater Model: M165R6DS13

Immediately turn off power to heater. One of two things has happened. Either: A. The electrical contacts in one of the thermostats has welded together, necessitating replacement of the thermostat(s). (in this case I would recommend replacing both upper and lower thermos) or B. The lower element has burnt through, and because there is 120 volts to the lower element at all times (it normally only heats when the thermos complete the circuit to give it a path to the other "hot", putting a full 240 volts on it) a section of the element will continue to heat up to the point where the break allows the current to complete it's path to neutral ground via the water in the tank. It can continue to heat until the high limit safety thermo trips out. (the red reset button on the upper thermostat)
If either condition exists, the high limit safety thermo should trip out power to the heater before boiling water, and thus steam, is produced. Even if the safety thermo should fail to cut power, the pressure / temperature relief valve should open, releasing excessive pressure. If that should also fail to open, due to corrosion or such, the water heater will create steam and can actually result in explosion, and possible injury or death!
Several years ago I came across one that was boiling and when I turned on a hot water faucet to relieve the pressure it filled the entire basement with steam. (I still shutter to think if I didn't catch that fast enough I or someone else could have been killed)

The most likely cause of your extra hot water is actually the lower element. After you turn off power to the heater, turn off the water supply to the heater, open a hot water faucet to allow air to enter the tank and drain the tank. Remove the lower element. A bad element is usually visually apparent. If it looks good, you would have to test it with an ohm meter. (should be about 20 ohms if it is good) Install new element, turn on water and fill until water flows steadily from the hot water faucet you left open. Now you can turn the faucet off and turn power back on to heater.

Posted on Feb 15, 2009

  • 659 Answers

SOURCE: No hot water, Rheem Model RR612T, Electric Hot Water Heater, 60 g

If you don't have current, 0v from terminal to terminal, then you don't have voltage to the elements. Replace the thermostat but check that you have 220v to the thermostat. It is possible that your breakers to the unit are either bad or tripped.

Posted on Apr 07, 2009

dmftrucker
  • 1922 Answers

SOURCE: Elec dryer, no heat case

check your center NEUTRAL connection to the element,sounds like your losing it somewhere,certain units rely on the neutral to operate the element on certain cycles to dry, the neutral carries the imbalance current load and the wire gets hot and will get brittle and break

Posted on Sep 24, 2009

aasc
  • 1606 Answers

SOURCE: Kenmore Model 110.96585200 No heat!

You probably have a bad thermal cut-off . This is the small thermostat , located at the top of the element housing . This " thermostat " should read infinate resistance ( no resistance ) . You can put the 2 wires togather , and see if heat comes on . pt # 3399848 . Both thermostats , should read 0 resistance . They are normally closed . The thermal cut-off , will not reset itself , if open . This is a safety t-stat , for when dryer gets too hot , and will have to be replaced .

Posted on Nov 11, 2009

Testimonial: "Great advice "

  • 9 Answers

SOURCE: 50 gal. Reliance electric hot water w/bottom element problems

Willard when you say it throws the reset button,do you mean the breaker on your fuse box of your home?
If you mean that then yes it could be a bad element.The bottom element takes all the abuse on a electric hot water heater. They can short out,and need to be replaced.

Posted on Dec 01, 2009

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2 Answers

Water only stays hot for about 5 min or


Gas or electric?
Electric water heater ... then test for crossover, check for water leak, replace thermostats, test elements
Gas water heater ... test for crossover, check for water leak
http://waterheatertimer.org/Crossover.html

http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermostat-on-electric-water-heater.html


http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html

water leak: turn off all taps and put ear against pipe and listen for water leak... check if water meter advances when all water taps are off.

Gene

Oct 09, 2014 | Water Heaters

2 Answers

I have a problem with a state 30 gallon hot water heater,the tank states 240 v but there was only 120 running it ,it has one element ,everything was working until the outside water well pump quit since the...


Thermostat is rated 120-208-240-277 volts.
Element will work with any voltage too, no matter rating on label. It will burn at different temperatures at different voltaGES.
Any voltage should run water heater.
Copy following links:
http://waterheatertimer.org/Figure-Volts-Amps-Watts-for-water-heater.html

Push in reset button.
Make sure tank was full of water before turning power ON. Or element will instantly burn out.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-electric-problems-with-water-heater.html#new

Are you testing voltage across top two screws on element.
http://waterheatertimer.org/images/Upper-thermostat-w-wire-a-2.jpg
Or are you testing each leg to ground?
http://waterheatertimer.org/images/Inside-Main-Breaker-Box-12.jpg

Gene
h

Oct 31, 2013 | Water Heaters

1 Answer

Rheem 27 instant electric hot water heater causes customer's home lighting to flicker.


According to the literature I read, this heater requires a DEDICATED 240 volt, 60 amp service minimum. That means it should have its own circuit breaker with nothing else on that line. Depending on the overall electric service size for the building, the heater is causing an overload when it's on and resulting in a voltage drop that causes the flickering and possibly other issues.

You didn't say if this was a residential installation but if it is, most homes have a 100 amp 240 volt service (in the USA). The heater is using most of the home's power. If there are other loads on the service like an electric range or oven, the problem will be worse.

If the home is new, it may be equipped with a 240 volt, 200 amp service. If that's the case, the heater should be checkd with an ammeter to be sure it is not over-drawing for some reason like under sized wiring, bad connections or contaminated heating electrodes.

Oct 30, 2013 | Rheem RTE 27 Tankless Electric Water...

1 Answer

I replaced all parts but water heated won't get hot


You have electric water heater.
You replaced elements and thermostats but heater still won't work.
And tank was completely full of water, and water was running out of a faucet before turning power ON.
If elements are not fully immersed in water, they will instantly burn out.
If upper element is burned out, then tank will have NO hot water.
If lower element is burned out, and upper element is not burned out, then tank will have some hot water.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-it-works.html

If elements did not burn out, then that leaves 1 main suspect: the electricity.

1) Push in ECO red reset button on upper thermostat. If ECO is tripped out, then heater will not work.

2) Click circuit breaker all the way one direction and then back the other direction to make sure breaker is latched.

3) If tank has 2 elements, then it is 240volt.
If 1 leg of 240Volt circuit is not working, then 240V appliance will not work.
240Volt circuit needs both hot wires to complete the circuit:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-wire-EH40-hot-water-heater-timer.html#120-240

Buy cheap multimeter from Home Center and set dial to 240-250-277VAC
Tape tester leads to woods sticks to keep hands away from power.
Power is ON
Test across top 2 screws on upper element should show 220-240 volts.
If you have 240 at top two screws, then skip down to step 6.
If no reading across top two screws, then move to top of tank.

4) Open connection point where wire connects to heater.
Test across both insulated wires should get reading of 220-240 volts.
If no reading, move to circuit breaker box.

5) Mark water heater breaker.
Turn off all breakers except water heater breaker and main breaker. (and breaker to light fixture where box is located)
Do not hold or touch or lean against anything metal.
Stand on dry boards and wear dry clothes.
If main breaker is OFF, the big wires that connect to main breaker are still HOT.

Remove box cover.
240Volt breaker has 2 wires connected with screws.
Test across both screws for 240Volt.
See if wires are loose.
If there is no reading, then breaker is not working on one leg.
To double check, move water heater wires to another same-size 240V breaker and then put ear against water heater to listen for bubbly-fizzing sound.

6) If you are getting 240 to water heater, then wire inside tank could be loose.
Do 30 minute 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, fixya expert speaks with you over phone while you work on timer.

Jan 09, 2011 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

We just recently replaced both heating elements in our water heater. Now the water is just barely getting warm and not hot. What's wrong??


Electric water heater if fully repairable by homeowner:

A] First of all, we know your upper element is working because you have some hot water:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-it-works.html
That says tank is not overheating.
It says tank is getting 240Volts.
It we know water heater is 240Volts because you have 2 elements.
And it says reset button is not tripped.

B] That leaves 4 suspects:
Suspect 1) Bad Upper thermostat or Bad Lower thermostat: solution replace both thermostats for about 25$. Steps shown in link below.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermostat-on-electric-water-heater.html
Suspect 2) Burned out Lower element: solution take out element, clean sediment out of tank, put in new element. Steps shown in link below
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-clean-sediment-out-of-electric-water-heater.html
Suspect 3) Loose wire or connection: solution open covers and remove insulation and look for signs of burning and high heat. Tighten all screws very tight. Replace burned part. Put insulation and covers back over thermostat so thermostat not exposed to cool air which will cause thermostat to misread tank temperature.

C] Before replacing anything, you can test water heater parts and determine exact cause of problem. Testing requires $5 multimeter from Lowes or Home Depot:
Install battery in multimeter.
When test calls for testing voltage, rotate multimeter dial to 240 or 250 or 277 Volts.
When test calls for testing continuity, rotate multimeter dial to ohms (upside down horseshoe symbol is ohms)
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-electric-water-heater.html
After doing 30 minutes of testing, you will be expert in water heaters.

D] You replaced elements for a reason
.
Did you test elements before replacing?
Was tank producing some hot water before you replaced elements?
If tank producing some hot water, then lower element was bad, and upper element was good.

And when you replaced lower element, did you also clean sediment out of tank?

If sediment builds up inside tank, it will reach lower element and burn out the element.
That could have been original problem, and it could be same problem again.
Restore full efficiency to tank by cleaning out sediment and replacing lower element.
http://waterheatertimer.org/Clean-sediment-out-of-water-heater.html

E} More reading to preserve tank and save money long term
http://waterheatertimer.org/Replace-anode-rod.html
http://waterheatertimer.org/9-ways-to-save-with-water-heater.html

Dec 10, 2010 | Rheem Water Heaters

2 Answers

I TURNED ON POWER TO MY NEW ELECTRIC WATER 40gal MODEL # GEM402 AFTER FILLING WITH WATER. WATER WOULD NOT HEAT UP. CHECKED THREMOSTATS BOTH WERE PRSET AT 120 CHECKED POWER,BOTH HOT WIRES HAVE 124 VOLTS TO...


The controls of electric water heaters are designed so that at no time are both the top and bottom heating elements energized. Nearly all electric water heaters of this capacity in the US & Canada (other places, too) operate on 240 Volts.

When the water in the tank is below the set point of the thermostat (in your case - 120 degrees), the top heating element is expected to be on - (unless there is an issue with the top thermostat or limit switch). The top most control is the "high temperature limit". It is identified by the reset button on it. Make sure this isn't tripped by depressing the button. If it clicks - it was tripped and should start to make hot water at this point. If not tripped, you should check for the presence of 240 Volts between the heating element terminal screws. Do not measure from ground to a terminal screw and believe 120 Volts is "good". To make heat, you need 240 Volts - not 120 Volts measured across the terminals - not to ground. The amount of heat created running at 120 Volts is only 1/4 of what it will do at the correct voltage.

If you don't measure 240 Volts on the top element, check the bottom element in the same manner described for the top element.

If unable to measure 240 volts on any element, either there is a problem with the power source (blown fuse or circuit breaker), high temp limit switch, or thermostat(s).

If 240 Volts is present on either heating element, and water is not warm / hot in 30 minutes or so, a defective heating element is suspect. You can change controls without draining a tank, but replacing elements will require draining the tank first. Do not power the water heater without first filling it.

You can read a very detailed "how to" article about checking water heaters here.

I hope this helps - and good luck!

Nov 04, 2010 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

I installed kenmore power miser heater not getting hot water need to know if wires are correct please


Water heater are usually 240 volt. I do not know if this is a standard water heater (tank type) or a tankless but the main wiring will be the same. Black should go to black and the the red to the white if you do not have corresponding red wires. The green is the ground and should be attached to the screw in the wiring box of the heater. If you have any other questions please contact me at kreaume@charter.net

Jul 31, 2009 | Water Heaters

1 Answer

Hot water heater


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.

Mike

Apr 05, 2009 | Element Chromalox SG1353-430326 Electric...

1 Answer

Water heater- not always hot


common problems i have seen are:

1) wife or kids hitting the OFF switch thinking its the light switch in the closet where my heater is located.

2) heating element has died. you should have 2 elements in this heater. when one dies, the heater cannot keep up with the demand of heating 50 gals of water.

if there is a warranty, then now is the time to exercise it.

if no warranty, then it is possible to troubleshoot each element to see which one is dead if you are handy with a voltmeter and electrical wires. if comfy, i can provide steps to narrow it down. list the kenmore model number if you reply.

Feb 02, 2009 | Intermatic WH40 - Water Heater Time Switch...

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