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Replace bottom element and still no hot water.do i need to replace the top one as well

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  • tgabbard Oct 07, 2009

    bottom one rotted in half so it needed replaced anyways so i did and still no hot water

  • Pimpinaudio May 11, 2010

    are you sure its the elements and not the thermal switch?

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  • Water Heaters Master
  • 1,922 Answers

Are you sure the thermostat isn't defective?

Posted on Oct 07, 2009

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My caravan carver heaters pressure relief vale keeps blowing any ideas please


Not familiar with that exact heater but if it is an electric heater with a top and bottom element this may be the problem. Electric water heaters usually heat water off the bottom element. If a lot of hot water is used then the top one kicks in through the temperature controls. In some cases if the bottom element burns out, it will try to heat everything with the top element. This sometimes causes the water in the top of the tank to actually get too hot and it opens the relief valve. So you may have a bottom element bad. Otherwise your relief vale may need replaced or you have a sticking temp control making it get too hot.

Apr 11, 2015 | Water Heaters

1 Answer

Have a new electric tank,top element wont come on,replaced thermostat 3 times top element comes on once but next morning not enough hot water&top element wont come on,can someone help? thanks


The top element only comes on when the heater is about out of water. The water is directed to the bottom of the tank. Cold water stays on bottom, Bottom heater element heats water. If you use all that water then the top of the tank gets cold and the top element comes. When the top of the tank is warm, then the bottom element comes on. I would susupect the bottom element as it does most of the work. If you have an ohm meter, turn off electric, and remove wires from element. Check element for continuity. If you don't get reading, then that element is bad.

Oct 04, 2010 | General Electric Water Heaters

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...


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

1 Answer

We had no hot water so we check the elements with a voltage meter and found the bottom element to be bad. We replaced it. Now there is still no hot water. When we test the voltage again there is continuity...


The elements never run at the same time, it would take to much energy for a standard residential heater. Instead, they rotate powering up back and forth depending on the hot water demand. If you getting 208 to 240 volts on the top element and nothing is happening, the top element is bad and needs to be replaced. If you can swing 30 bucks, replace both elements and both thermostats at the same time. This way you know that everything is new. Check out this generic water-heater wiring schematic.

Sep 06, 2010 | Reliance & 50gal Electric Water Heater

1 Answer

Top heating element was broke. Replaced got hot water for week. Now have to run hot water for 20 mins before it goes from warm to hot. Top heating element reads 240VAC bottom heating element reads...


look for a badly connected power line ont he bottom element, or any connection upstream of the power terminals. voltage readings usually drop to that range when you only have one side of the 220v circuit connected.

Jun 20, 2010 | Rheem 50 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

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.

Dec 01, 2009 | Reliance & 50gal Electric Water Heater

1 Answer

Heating elements do not operate together


That's how they work. First you need to know that cold water goes into the tank near the bottom (because of the "dip tube" inside the tank) and hot water is taken out at the top. Also hot water naturally rises.
so... when the tank is full of cold water the top element will come on and heat up the top 1/3 of the water then the bottom element will come on and finish heating the rest of the tank

Mar 28, 2009 | Rheem 80 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

1 Answer

Low amount of hot water


You say a very new water heater. You won't get 40 gallons of hot water from a 40 gallon water heater because the continuing influx of cold water will cool your hot water down. However, it appears that your bottom water heater element needs replacing. If the top element is bad, you'll get no hot water. If your bottom element is bad, you'll get "some" hot water. Try replacing the bottom element. DON'T FORGET to turn off the electricity AND water first (closeby towels are also handy)!

Mar 09, 2009 | Rheem 40 GAL ELEC TALL Water Heater 6YR SC...

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