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 > problem with electric water heater-Fixed but new problem

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rbp111

Citrus Heights, CA

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Posted: 02/16/20 10:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a Suburban 12gal electric water heater which about 5 years old. It recently started to give me problems in that the heater warms the water, but it does not get hot. I have tried everything, checked the breakers, the fuses, all the switches, all the various sources of water including the outside showers. I have checked everything, but still, the water comes out warm, not hot. The water was on before the heater was turned on. As a matter of fact, the water was hot from the sink at night before the shower which came the next morning and then it was warm.
I have an appointment with a dealer in two weeks, but wondered if anyone else had this problem.

Since posting this problem, I took in the fifth-wheel and got it fixed for free. They said that the thermostat and the element had shorted out. Well, I was glad that the heating problem was fixed. Got the trailer home and found that there is another problem. It leaks water from the point where the drinking water hose attaches to the "kantleak" female portion of the trailer.
I called Kantleak, and they don't supply the gasket which I think the problem is. They want to sell me the whole portion of the drinking water which is over $39, not including shipping. I have been to Home Depot, Camping World and two other dealers looking for the gasket I need.
Any ideas?

* This post was edited 03/14/20 08:11am by rbp111 *

fj12ryder

Platte City, MO

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Posted: 02/16/20 12:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You've checked everything, but have you checked the heating element? My bet would be that is the issue. Easy to fix and cheap to replace. I got my last one at Lowes for about $9.


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bob213

Fresno, CA

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Posted: 02/16/20 12:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Element is easy to replace just make sure you buy the wrench to take it off.($5 or$6).

Watch this:
element


You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality – Ayn Rand


77rollalong

Brighton Ontario

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Posted: 02/16/20 12:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

would check the heater bypass valve and make sure that is not open part way,does it get hot on propane? also make sure the hot and cold taps are shut off in all the shower(s)

rbp111

Citrus Heights, CA

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Posted: 02/16/20 01:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I do think it must the heating element. It is under an extended warranty. So they can fix it at no cost to me.
Also, I did check the bypass valve. It was not leaking. The gas comes on when I throw the switch, and heats up the water nice and hot.

By the way, I appreciate the video submitted by bob on how to take off the heating element. It is real easy and the guy who made the video aught to be commended.

BB_TX

McKinney, Texas

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Posted: 02/16/20 02:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Heating elements are normally either good or they are bad. Can’t think of a way one could partially fail. They are basically a specialized resistor.

If you don’t have a valve problem allowing mixing of hot and cold, then I would question the thermostat/hi temp cutout.

fj12ryder

Platte City, MO

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Posted: 02/16/20 02:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

BB_TX wrote:

Heating elements are normally either good or they are bad. Can’t think of a way one could partially fail. They are basically a specialized resistor.

If you don’t have a valve problem allowing mixing of hot and cold, then I would question the thermostat/hi temp cutout.
They don't always fail completely, I've had one that would do the same as the OP's: it would just warm the water, it never got hot.

eheading

Lakeland, FL

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Posted: 02/16/20 03:21pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Make sure your outside faucet is turned off. We had a similar problem years ago and this was the problem. If the faucet is turned on, but the wand is off, the hot water can get diluted with cold water through the faucet. Probably not your problem, but worth checking.

Ed Headington

ScottG

Bothell Wa.

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Posted: 02/16/20 03:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Another vote for outside faucet mixing valves being on.
We all have to do this once.


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mobeewan

Hampton, Va

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Posted: 02/16/20 03:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

bob213 wrote:

Element is easy to replace just make sure you buy the wrench to take it off.($5 or$6).

Watch this:
element


The video was good at showing the basics, but he didn't use any Teflon tape when installing the new element or reinstalling the anode plug. Nor did he clean the tank threads to remove the remnants of Teflon tape.

After he reconnected the leads for the heating element he should have refilled the water heater and turned on the element to test it and make sure it was going to heat and the element threads were not going to leak.

You never know for sure if the element threads or the anode plug threads are going to leak until the tank and the water are heated up. He put the cover back on the element access so he would never know it was leaking unless he found the floor was getting wet under the water heater.

After the element is successfully tested and there is no leakage then he should have continued to reinstall the element cover and the gas burner tube.

I'll give the video a B minus.

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