Common Electric Water Heater Problems You Should Learn About

Electric water heaters and gas-fueled heaters are similar in functioning. The prime difference between these two is their heat source. Extended “heating elements” are used in an electric heater, while gas heaters require “burners.”

Between the two, most people prefer electric heaters as they are pretty convenient. However, malfunctioning heating elements are likely to cause a hitch in your everyday life. Therefore, it is essential to learn about the common electric heater problems and their solutions. It will ensure that you enjoy the cold season with the utmost comfort.


Problem 1: No Hot Water

Is your water heater not providing you hot water? If yes, it can be due to a tripped limit switch. Check the heater’s circuit breaker (generally present in the service panel) to ensure that it is not disconnected. If the breaker is tripped, switch the circuit off and switch it back on.

If the breaker is connected still the water is not hot, you can take the following steps to reset the temperature limit:

  • Turn off the breaker
  • Remove the access panel from the upper heating element
  • Remove insulation and safety guard (be careful not to touch the electrical terminals).
  • Press the red button, usually located above the upper thermostat.
  • Replace the insulation, access panel, and safety guard.
  • Turn on the breaker.

If your problem is not resolved with this method, contact the professionals.

Problem 2: Heater Turns Off Automatically

Many electric water heaters have safety shut-off features that trigger them to turn off at a specific temperature. So, if your water heater won’t stay on for a long period, it’s probably because the temperature is too high. In that case, you can lower the temperature to resolve the issue.

If the problem still persists, it could be an electrical issue such as the heating coil, thermometer, or any other part of the system breakdown. In such a scenario, you need to hire a plumber and resolve the problem as soon as possible. Otherwise, it can damage the heating system as well as your home.

Problem 3: Water Temperature Is Too Hot

The inappropriate setting of the thermostat can cause too much hot water. Needless to say, it can affect your bathing experience severely and also involves the risk of getting burned. Therefore you must check the thermostat settings to ensure just the right temperature of the water. Here’s how:

  • Turn off the water heater power in the service panel.
  • Remove the access panel, safety guard, and insulation.
  • Use a non-contact voltage tester to confirm that power is off.
  • Check the heat setting of the thermostat. The recommended temperature is between 115 to 125 degrees. (If your heater has two thermostats, check the setting of both and make sure the temperature is the same.)
  • Use a flathead screwdriver to adjust the temperature to the desired level.
  • Replace the safety guard, access panel, and insulation.
  • Turn on the breaker.


The Bottom Line

Hot baths are a great way to relieve stress, muscle pain, and get quality sleep. To reap these benefits, your electric water heater must be working properly. So, pay attention to the problems mentioned above and take appropriate measures.

In addition to this, you should contact professionals to troubleshoot prevailing plumbing issues.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *