Question about Rheem Water Heaters

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My Rheem hot water heater stopped putting out hot water. Model # 71-40D or 71-400 I was told to replace the element. How?

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If you are not familiar with the element, I would get someone that is familiar with one and have them do it. It's not something I would recommend you do based on your question. There's electrical, pressurized water tank, and a whole lot of water that may cause you to have a worse bad day.

Posted on Jun 26, 2009

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The only time that I have ever had an issue with my hot water heater not putting out hot water was when my pipes froze. Is there any way that your pipes could have frozen? What I do to prevent that from happening now, though, is keep my water running (just barely dripping) whenever there is an ice or hail storm. http://www.firstclassplumbinginc.com/hot-water-heaters.html

Posted on Jan 05, 2016

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Turn off power at circuit breaker. Open upper access panel. Press red reset button hard. Close access panel. Turn on power at circuit breaker. Listen to heater: if it hums, good. You might have to do this again after a few days if the water overheats and kills it again. Look at buying a new heater soon.

Posted on Dec 11, 2015

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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Rheem 49 gal model 81V400B - hot water lasting only 5-10 minutes then takes an hour to heat back up.


Ordinary tank-type electric water heaters are fully repairable by homeowner.

A) Basic info on Rheem
Rheem electric water heater website:
http://www.rheem.com/products/tank_water_heaters/electric_water_heaters/
Find age of Rheem: look 2nd and 3rd digit of serial number, for example 06 is 2006

B) Water heater has some hot water.
That says certain things: upper element is working, water heater electricity is working, reset button is not tripped, and heater is not experiencing run-away overheating event.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-it-works.html

C) That leaves 4 suspects that cause lower amount of hot water.

1) TP valve is running hot water out of tank -or- leaking faucet is running hot water out of tank.
Check for leaks
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-TP-valve.html

2) Lower element is burned out.
Test lower element using inexpensive multi-meter from Home Depot.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html
Replace element with same wattage shown on label, and clean out sediment:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-clean-sediment-out-of-electric-water-heater.html
http://waterheatertimer.org/Clean-sediment-out-of-water-heater.html

2) Upper or lower thermostat is bad.
Replace both thermostats for about $25.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermostat-on-electric-water-heater.html

3) Burned or shorted wire located between upper and lower sections of tank.
Turn off power. Open covers on side of tank. Remove insulation. Inspect parts for signs of high heat and burning. Especially check lower element. Tighten any loose wires. Replace part that shows signs of burning.
Put insulation and cover back over thermostats so cooler outside temperature doesn't cause thermostat to misread tank temperature.
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.

Feb 03, 2011 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

Put in new elements was told they may be the problem that water heater just stopped working but hasn't come back on. Whats the correct process to put in new elements to insure operation of unit


Links below show step-by-step photos:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-water-heater-element.html
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html

If you turn power ON before tank is completely full of water, elements will instantly burn out.
For example if tank was half full, and power was turned ON, the upper element burns out, but lower element is still good.
If upper element is burned out, the tank will produce no hot water
If lower element is bad, and upper element is good, then tank produces some hot water.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-it-works.html

Another thing to consider is the electric power going to water heater.
You mentioned elements, so you have 2 elements, which is 240Volt water heater.
Check wiring to water heater:
http://waterheatertimer.org/Test-circuit-breaker-and-electricity-to-water-heater.html
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 heater.

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

1 Answer

I am only receiving half of the normal amount of hot water.


You have electric water heater.
Electric water heaters are fully repairable by homeowner, excluding hybrid type.

Rheem electric water heaters:
http://www.rheem.com/products/tank_water_heaters/electric_water_heaters/
Rheem fury series manuals and models
http://www.rheem.com/product.aspx?id=09DF2BDD-5E11-4D32-B574-84ACFB8A4619

Age of Rheem water heater is shown first 4 digits of serial number located on side of tank: for example 0705 means July 2005.
Serial number also shows model number & wattage of elements in case you need to buy new generic 4-bolt type 4500 Watt element from hardware store.

A) If your water heater receives very cold incoming water, it may not heat fast enough to keep tank warm.
Add a tempering tank.
http://waterheatertimer.org/Tempering-tank.html
Add insulation over entire water heater except TP valve. Insulate pipes completely.
Read more information:
http://waterheatertimer.org/9-ways-to-save-with-water-heater.html

B) 40 or 50 gallon water heater is 240Volts and tank will have 2 access panels on front.
Rheem ships all water heaters with 4500 Watt elements.

Narrow down the suspects:
C) Water heater has some hot water.
This tells us upper element is working.
And that water heater electricity is working.
And that reset button is not tripped.
And that heater is not experiencing run-away overheating event.

That gives us 3 solid suspects.
1) lower element is burned out. Test lower element using inexpensive multi-meter from Home Depot.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html
Replace element with same wattage shown on label, and clean out sediment:
This will restore water heater to full 99% efficiency.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-clean-sediment-out-of-electric-water-heater.html
http://waterheatertimer.org/Clean-sediment-out-of-water-heater.html

2) Upper or lower thermostat is bad. Replace both thermostats for about $25.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermostat-on-electric-water-heater.html
If you want to test thermostats and all parts before replacing anything:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-electric-problems-with-water-heater.html

3) Burned or shorted wire. Turn off power. Open covers on side of tank. Remove insulation. Inspect parts for signs of high heat and burning. Especially lower element. Tighten any loose wires. Replace part that shows signs of burning.
Put insulation and cover back over thermostats so cooler outside temperature doesn't cause thermostat to misread tank temperature.

geno_3245_185.jpgRheem 4500 watt element

Dec 14, 2010 | Rheem Water Heaters

1 Answer

The water want stay hot very long


You have electric water heater.
Electric water heaters are fully repairable by homeowner, excluding hybrid type.

Rheem electric water heaters:
http://www.rheem.com/products/tank_water_heaters/electric_water_heaters/
Rheem fury series manuals and models
http://www.rheem.com/product.aspx?id=09DF2BDD-5E11-4D32-B574-84ACFB8A4619

Age of Rheem
water heater is first 4 digits of serial number located on side of tank: for example 0705 means July 2005.
Serial number also shows model number & wattage of elements.

A) If your water heater receives very cold incoming water, it may not heat fast enough to keep tank warm.
Add a tempering tank.
http://waterheatertimer.org/Tempering-tank.html
Add insulation over entire water heater except TP valve. Insulate pipes completely.
Read more information:
http://waterheatertimer.org/9-ways-to-save-with-water-heater.html

B) If cold outside temperatures are not to blame, your water heater may have a bad thermostat or bad lower element.

C) 40 or 50 gallon water heater is 240Volts and tank will have 2 access panels on front.
Rheem ships all water heaters with 4500 Watt elements.

Narrow down the suspects:
D) Water heater has some hot water.
This tells us upper element is working.
And that water heater electricity is working.
And that reset button is not tripped.
And that heater is not experiencing run-away overheating event.

That gives us 3 solid suspects.
1) lower element is burned out. Test lower element using inexpensive multi-meter from Home Depot.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html
Replace element with same wattage shown on label, and clean out sediment:
This will restore water heater to full 99% efficiency.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-clean-sediment-out-of-electric-water-heater.html
http://waterheatertimer.org/Clean-sediment-out-of-water-heater.html

2) Upper or lower thermostat is bad. Replace both thermostats for about $25.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-replace-thermostat-on-electric-water-heater.html
If you want to test thermostats and all parts before replacing anything:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-troubleshoot-electric-problems-with-water-heater.html

3) Burned or shorted wire. Turn off power. Open covers on side of tank. Remove insulation. Inspect parts for signs of high heat and burning. Especially lower element. Tighten any loose wires. Replace part that shows signs of burning.
Put insulation and cover back over thermostats so cooler outside temperature doesn't cause thermostat to misread tank temperature.
geno_3245_183.jpgRheem element

Dec 14, 2010 | Rheem 50 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

Water is not hot, doesn't last long. Thermostats turn elements on when turned up. Elements show 230 when on.


Lower element can be burned out and still read 230V across screws

1) We know thermostats are working because elements test 230V.
2) We know upper element is working because tank has some hot water.
If upper element is burned out, tank will have no hot water.
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-it-works.html

3) Here's how to test lower element:
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-test-water-heater-element.html

4)Here's how to replace element
Rheem element is 4500Watt bolt-in type
http://waterheatertimer.org/How-to-clean-sediment-out-of-electric-water-heater.html

5) Rheem manual says: Heaters furnished with standard 240 volt AC, single phase non-simultaneous wiring, and 4500 watt upper and lower heating elements.
http://waterheatertimer.org/pdf/Rheem-spec-sheet.pdf

geno_3245_94.jpgRheem 4500Watt element

Nov 21, 2010 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

Element Problem?


Hi,
I think you have it wired wrong...
Check it out with this tip...

Electric Water Heater Wiring Diagram
http://www.fixya.com/support/r4422595-electric_water_heater_wiring_diagram

heatman101

Jul 08, 2010 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

Not getting the amount of hot water I used to get


Remove power from WH Remove heating element covers and, insullation you will see two screws and, a red button (reset) for each element; push the button for each element to reset them; put everything back repower and, test. If the problem is still there: Remove power, test element screws with a meter set for resistance; if no continuity drain WH and, replace element(s)

Apr 25, 2010 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

2 Answers

I have a rheem water heater model # 72- 40- 1 not getting enough hot water .it only has 1 element how can i put in another element and wire it correctly? please help


First, let me say that no Rheem electric water heater that I am aware of has only 1 element.
You may have to search - but there should be one about 8 inches from the top and another behind a panel about 10 inches above the bottom. Please search again.
It is NOT possible to add an element to a "used" water heater. The inner and outer liners must both be sealed and that is done at the factory.

Feb 19, 2010 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

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