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Old 06-17-2015, 01:50 PM   #15
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thermal reset is between the two blue connectors, with the power off, see if you can hear a click when you push between the blue connectors, should be a button there. See link to manual above.
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Old 06-17-2015, 02:03 PM   #16
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thermal reset is between the two blue connectors, with the power off, see if you can hear a click when you push between the blue connectors, should be a button there. See link to manual above.

That button thermostat is the actual thermostat controlling the heating element. No reset button.

With all your switches on, use your meter and measure that you have 120vac between the two heater screw terminals when the water is cold. Be careful!

Then turn everything off and remove both heater element wires. Again using your meter on the terminals, measure the elements resistance. It should be about 45 ohms.

If both are good, then your have power to the element and it should heat.

If no 120vac on the heater, then the button thermostat or your heater breaker are bad.


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Old 06-17-2015, 02:17 PM   #17
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See page 14 of manual I posted in my link above, that will get you troubleshooting info for 120v electric side of water heater.
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Old 06-17-2015, 04:06 PM   #18
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That button thermostat is the actual thermostat controlling the heating element. No reset button.

With all your switches on, use your meter and measure that you have 120vac between the two heater screw terminals when the water is cold. Be careful!

Then turn everything off and remove both heater element wires. Again using your meter on the terminals, measure the elements resistance. It should be about 45 ohms.

If both are good, then your have power to the element and it should heat.

If no 120vac on the heater, then the button thermostat or your heater breaker are bad.


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on the top GREEN scale it reads 7. Voltage on element is 120 V.

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See page 14 of manual I posted in my link above, that will get you troubleshooting info for 120v electric side of water heater.
No reset buttons.
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Old 06-17-2015, 06:21 PM   #19
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Ok, If you get 120v from black to white wire on element, then you found it, bad element. If you are getting 7 ohms resistance with the power off, then you found it, bad element.
Do you have one of those water heater rinse gizmos? When you replace the element, be sure to take out the drain plug first and use the gizmo to flush out the tank-lots of stuff (minerals, scale) builds up in there.
Good luck!
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Old 06-17-2015, 06:41 PM   #20
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Why is the 120 across the element bad ? What should it have read ?
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Old 06-17-2015, 09:40 PM   #21
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If you read 120v at the element, and you still have no hot water, the element is not heating the water-you are reading what you should read when the thermostat 'calls' for hot water, that is 120v-the reading is not bad, its a bad heating element. Bad because even when 120v is applied (as you verified w/your meter) the element doesn't work (bad).
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Old 06-17-2015, 09:46 PM   #22
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on the top GREEN scale it reads 7. Voltage on element is 120 V.





No reset buttons.

Voltage across the element is good.

7 on the green scale is too,low and if correct, it would be tripping your circuit breaker. Either you did not disconnect the wires and measure across the element terminals or your meter needs calibration or is bad.

A good element will read 45 ohms on the top scale.

With the meter, if you touch the leads together, the meter should read zero (0). If not, your battery in the meter is bad or there is a calibration control that is not set.


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Old 06-18-2015, 06:03 AM   #23
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Why is the 120 across the element bad ? What should it have read ?
120 volts across the terminals is good. It indicates you have power to the element.

It's the resistance reading of 7 ohms that's bad. According to shiggs68, the resistance of the element should be 45 ohms, so a reading of 7 ohms indicates an internal short. That's probably the reason you had a burned wire.

When the element burns out, one of 2 things happens. 1) The element overheats and a small section of the wire inside the element melts leaving an open circuit. You will essentially get an resistance reading of infinity (all the way to the left of the green scale). 2) When the element overheats and melts, the melted wire inside fuses to a nearby section of wire. In this case, you will get a very low resistance reading, sometimes near zero.
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:41 AM   #24
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So I'm not feeling up to par today so no crawling under the bus for me. I will recalibrate my volt meter and try to get a better reading. It's not a high grade meter so that may have some effect on the reading. If everyone continues to agree that the element is the issue, is it physically difficult in that it will be stuck in the tank ? Pretty sure I have ample room to get a socket in there. I just don't want to snap something and then be really stuck.
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Old 06-18-2015, 09:51 AM   #25
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I do have a volt meter. How do I check the sensors?
To check sensors: If tank is at least cool both sensors should have continuity through them. If no continuity and tank is cool then sensor(s) are bad.
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Old 06-18-2015, 10:46 AM   #26
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I did respond to that. They are shorted.
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Old 06-18-2015, 10:51 AM   #27
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Is this a locally purchasable item or is Atwood the best route ?
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Old 06-18-2015, 05:55 PM   #28
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Is this a locally purchasable item or is Atwood the best route ?

If the thermostats are "shorted" in your terms that means they are correctly closed which also goes along with your 120vac across the element.

And yes, a new electric heating element can be purchased at Lowes or Home Depot. Just take the old one with you as there are several sizes.


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