The evidence points to a control malfunction.
Call Whirlpool for assistance: 1-877-817-6750
You will need your model number and serial number located on label on side of tank.
Serial number is required because models change as the technology evolves.
Open following link to read product details about the Energy Smart, and download typical manual.http://waterheatertimer.org/Whirlpool-Energy-Smart-electric.html
Note: Energy Smart water heater requires 10 gauge wire and 30 amp breaker.
Typical energy smart manual shows: 1 flash is start-up error, which indicates 'Power ON with no water in tank.'
This is not possible because at least the upper element would burn out, if not both elements.
If upper element burns out, this water heater will not make any hot water, since it is wired for ordinary non-simultaneous operation.
There cannot be air inside the tank since your hot water faucet is not spewing air.http://waterheatertimer.org/How-it-works.html
Also be aware that model numbers change.
Read following account of fellow who replaced control board on his 4-year-old energy smart, and how he discovered wires are reversed on newer control boards. Be sure to ask Whirlpool about this possibility, in the event they say control board is faulty and send you new board:http://www.fixya.com/support/t8263226-our_water_heater_doing