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Old 02-24-2013, 05:20 PM   #16
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new water heater woes


O.K., now the unit has sat for three (3) full days with power on it and when I got there today--NO warm/hot water from the tank. Not at the T&P valve, not at the drain valve, and not at the kitchen sink. Power (220vAC) at the incoming feed to the panel, power after the breaker, power to the thermostat, power to each element but NO warm/hot water. Checked each element once again with Ohm meter---12.8 Ohms, good element. Turned power back on and got amp readings: Top element shows 22 amps on each wire on the element. Bottom element: 22 amps on each wire going to the bottom element. Only thing I know left to do is to remove the elements for inspection, then put the juice to each one for just a very short time to see if they get warm. They should at least get warm shouldn't they "64pvolvo1800"? Physics in play here. There was only one problem with doing this: The person who lives here has no idea where the well is and there is no breaker within the inside panel identified as "WELL". She thinks the well is on her Uncle's land next door. Major decision time here: I have to tell her I have done all I know how to do, she should get her Uncle involved as it is his property, he paid the guys to put the new water heater in and I am done with this one.

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Old 02-24-2013, 06:24 PM   #17
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Wait a minute, three days and rated current, that heat is going somewhere. Is there water? Is the pipe on the know hot at least? The elements should've grenaded by now without water, so this must be a flow issue. Very interestissue you got there. No doubt it is not the heater but a plumbing issue after all.
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Old 02-25-2013, 05:24 AM   #18
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Is it tied to an Energy saving device from the POCO? Is there timers anywhere in the system?

Even with no flow there would be heat, the water in the tank would heat up .

Put a amperage readout analyzer on the circuit for 24 hours see what you get.

I know, I know it's really getting complicated.
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Last edited by COLDIRON; 02-25-2013 at 05:28 AM. Reason: added text
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Old 02-25-2013, 03:29 PM   #19
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May sound simple, but have you pushed the " reset " button ?
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Old 02-25-2013, 05:05 PM   #20
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I hate to keep asking but are you measuring 240 across the top element? If you are and it is not heating, the element is bad.
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Old 02-26-2013, 05:35 AM   #21
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I hate to keep asking but are you measuring 240 across the top element? If you are and it is not heating, the element is bad.
22amps says it is not the elements.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:17 AM   #22
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There was only one problem with doing this: The person who lives here has no idea where the well is and there is no breaker within the inside panel identified as "WELL". She thinks the well is on her Uncle's land next door. Major decision time here: I have to tell her I have done all I know how to do, she should get her Uncle involved as it is his property, he paid the guys to put the new water heater in and I am done with this one.
What does the well have to do with testing? Turn the water & electric off to the WH, drain the tank and remove the element. You did install a stop on the WH? (or one was existing)
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:08 AM   #23
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Has this issue been resolved? Really a weird one.
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Old 02-26-2013, 09:38 AM   #24
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@ Thurman, please stay with it and keep us posted I'd really like to hear the ending on this one.
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Old 02-26-2013, 10:39 AM   #25
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@"rjniles"--Yes, I measured 220vAC volts across both screws of the top and bottom element. Each screw of each element to tank was 110vAC respectively.
"64pvolvo1800" -- I agree that the amperage draw says the element(s) should be working, but why the heck will they not heat?
The reason I didn't drain the tank is no one knows where to turn the water off or where the well is or the power to it. They thought it was on the Uncle's lot next door. Whomever put this new unit in did NOT put a valve on the cold water piping to the tank--bad mistake to me. I said I had washed my hands of this one but it has been bugging me also. I'll call the lady today and ask if she got her Uncle to look into this or what is going on. Thanks for all the replies. David
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Old 02-26-2013, 04:09 PM   #26
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I wonder if the last "plumbers" dry fired the heater and burn't up the elements. I have also found over time that just because something tests good does not mean that it is good. Good resistance or not, those elements got cooked on a dry fire.
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Old 02-26-2013, 06:53 PM   #27
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You're pretty close with your call. The old, and new, elements are 4500 watts each and they are tied to a 30 amp dual breaker to get the 220vAC.

Not sure what type of electric water heater you have but you said you had 220v at both of the elements, which at 4500 watts each would be 41 amps and you said it had a 30 amp breaker. All the electric water heaters Iíve worked on only energize one element at a time. The top element energizes first until it is satisfied and then the bottom. If you are reading 220v at both elements I donít think you are reading it right. Thatís assuming it is the type of water heaters Iím familiar with.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:55 PM   #28
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"SinCityKid"--You are absolutely correct on this. I had noticed this when doing the voltage and amp testing, then thought "well maybe the top element has heated the water and the bottom has kicked in". But it sure doesn't seem to be the case. As of today the lady told me that no one else has looked into her water heater problem. So much for her Uncle who allows her to live there for free. We talked about me coming out Thursday and I want to pull the elements so she is going to find out where to cut the water off. I also suggested me placing a cut-off valve in the incoming cold water line. It seems like every time I try to do something nice for someone (can you say "freebie"?) these type problems arise.
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Old 02-26-2013, 07:58 PM   #29
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"SinCityKid"--You are absolutely correct on this. I had noticed this when doing the voltage and amp testing, then thought "well maybe the top element has heated the water and the bottom has kicked in". But it sure doesn't seem to be the case. As of today the lady told me that no one else has looked into her water heater problem. So much for her Uncle who allows her to live there for free. We talked about me coming out Thursday and I want to pull the elements so she is going to find out where to cut the water off. I also suggested me placing a cut-off valve in the incoming cold water line. It seems like every time I try to do something nice for someone (can you say "freebie"?) these type problems arise.
NO good deed goes unpunished, that's a fact, jack!
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Old 02-26-2013, 08:22 PM   #30
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"SinCityKid"--You are absolutely correct on this. I had noticed this when doing the voltage and amp testing, then thought "well maybe the top element has heated the water and the bottom has kicked in". But it sure doesn't seem to be the case. As of today the lady told me that no one else has looked into her water heater problem. So much for her Uncle who allows her to live there for free. We talked about me coming out Thursday and I want to pull the elements so she is going to find out where to cut the water off. I also suggested me placing a cut-off valve in the incoming cold water line. It seems like every time I try to do something nice for someone (can you say "freebie"?) these type problems arise.
Dont worry, for your reward, in your next life there will be only Natural Gas Hot water heaters.

If I was you, and if she has Gas, I would convert. Electric is EXPENSIVE.

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