Question about Rheem 50 Gallon FVR NATGAS Water Heater 6YR 22V50F1

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Much smaller amount of hot water from electric water heater

We're on city water. The water main that supply's our house broke a few days ago but the city fixed it within hours. Our faucets were spitting and sputtering out air for quite a while. The real problem is that now we only seem to have a few minutes of hot water at a time. Is my electric water heater air-bound somehow? How do you remedy this?

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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.

Posted on Aug 12, 2010

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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Why does the water suddenly runs COLD after many minutes of running hot?


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You have 2 problems with several possible causes:
You have 10-year-old electric water heater that was reinstalled after falling down, and doesn't heat the water.
And you have no hot or cold water pressure, and no pipes are leaking.

1) First problem is lack of water pressure throughout house.
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This spigot will tell you if problem is inside the house or between the house and meter.
If spigot runs full force, then you probably have clogged pipe where water heater connects to main cold line, or the main shut off valve got clogged with sediment that broke off inside the pipe when you were working on water heater.
Open and close shut off valve to see if that helps. Then disassemble pipes and track back the problem. Put pressure gauge on water heater drain valve to watch pressure drop when turning on indoor faucet.
Read following information:
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Test across wires at top of heater to see if you are getting correct voltage:
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The "40 Gallon" rating on the water heater is usually the amount of hot water the unit can produce in one hour. So the tank, and the amount of immediately available hot water, might be smaller than 40 gallons.

My bathtub is 2 feet wide by 1 foot deep and 4 feet long. This is 8 cubic feet or almost 60 gallons. So a 40 gallons of water at 120 degrees, mixed with 20 gallons of cold water (60 degrees), fills the tub with 100 degree water. My January cold water is 42 degrees, so it will take 40 gallons at 129 degrees to fill the tub. If the tub is cold to start it will take even hotter water.

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