Water Heater Element and corrosion

Reply

  #1  
Old 09-18-02, 12:04 PM
ikleiman's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 92
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Water Heater Element and corrosion

This spring my water heater (40gal electric) was making way less water. I discovered that there had been some leaking around the bottom element and the element shorted out. So I bought a new element and tools to remove and install at HomeDepot. When I tried to remove the old element, it was corroded in and I couldn't get it to budge! Frustration. So after trying for awhile, I decided to leave it alone as there is enough hot water for one good shower.

Can this be repaired? Is there reason to toss it altogether and replace it? Will I be able to run long this way, or is there likely to be more problems due to the original leaking?


thanks,
IK
 
  #2  
Old 09-18-02, 08:34 PM
Mike Swearingen's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Northeastern NC On The Albemarle Sound
Posts: 10,948
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Cool

Turn OFF the power to the water heater at the panel and the water to the heater. Attach a hose to the drain spigot at the bottom of the tank, open the T&P valve and a nearby hot water faucet for air, and drain the water heater.
Spray some WD-40 or other solvent around the element, and let it soak in.
If you have an element socket, put it on the element and use a pipe wrench for extra leverage to turn the socket and element counter-clockwise to loosen it.
It should come out.
Good luck!
Mike
 
  #3  
Old 09-29-02, 08:40 AM
ikleiman's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 92
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
OK, I pretty much tried what you suggest the first time and I couldn't budge the element. I even bought a socket for my socket breaker bar so that I would have the best fit on the thing.

What do you do when you can't get it to turn at this point?
 
  #4  
Old 09-29-02, 08:56 AM
Mike Swearingen's Avatar
Banned. Rule And/Or Policy Violation
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: Northeastern NC On The Albemarle Sound
Posts: 10,948
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Cool

I would say that that sucker is corroded and maybe electrically fried in place, if you can't get it out with a breaker bar and socket (trying it counter-clockwise, I presume). You can try a length of cheater pipe on the breaker bar for leverage.
If you can't repair it, it's time for a new water heater. Sorry.
Good Luck!
Mike
 
  #5  
Old 09-29-02, 05:01 PM
ikleiman's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 92
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Well that makes sense. As it is, I have just enough hot water for a shower and that is fine with me. I just hope the other one doesn't blow. thanks for the commentary

Ian
 
  #6  
Old 09-30-02, 10:16 AM
T
Member
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Chicago
Posts: 1,915
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
The solution would be a black impact wrench socket, coupled with a 2 ft breaker bar assisted by a 4 ft 1" pipe. If you really want to you can actually jump up and down on it. Either the element will come out or the heater will break. I'm guessing the element will come out....
 
  #7  
Old 09-30-02, 10:29 AM
ikleiman's Avatar
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 92
Received 0 Votes on 0 Posts
Wow! that sounds pretty intense.

What is an impact wrench socket? How does it work? Would a compressed air wrench make the job easier?
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: