Have to reset water heater every few months


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Old 11-07-13, 12:59 PM
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Have to reset water heater every few months

So here's my problem. I have a 4.5 year old Kenmoore water heater. A few months ago I noticed I wasn't getting any hot water so I pressed the reset button. A few days later I had to reset it again. Now here we are a few months later and it had to be reset again today after working fine for 2 months.

What does this sound like? What needs to be replaced? Why does it work fine after resetting?
 
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Old 11-07-13, 01:09 PM
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Could be one or more of several different problems. Do you have a multimeter?
 
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Old 11-08-13, 05:26 AM
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Yes, I do have a multimeter.

Also, I reset the water heater last night around 6 and it worked fine for a few hours but I had to reset it again today.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 05:46 AM
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Whens the last time you drained some of the sediment out of the bottom of it?
It needs to be done at least once a year.
testing water heater element with multimeter - Bing Videos
 
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Old 11-08-13, 07:51 AM
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I reset the water heater last night around 6 and it worked fine for a few hours but I had to reset it again today.
You are resetting the high temperature limit control, it's a safety feature. What temperature do you have the thermostats set for? From my experience, once the hi temp limits starts tripping, it weakens and will trip more easily each time. If your elements are good (they need to be checked), I'd suggest replacing the top thermostat and the hi temp limit, they are usually sold together. When replacing, be sure the thermostat sits directly on the surface of the tank. I don't recommend setting the temperature on either thermostat above 140 degrees.

Furd is also right. The cause of the temperature getting too high could be several problems and not necessarily the thermostat. You could also have a bad element that is shorted to the water which continues to heat on 120 volts, but at a slower rate, that eventually overheats and trips the high limit. Both elements always have 120 volts to one terminal.
 
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Old 11-08-13, 05:54 PM
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I've actually never emptied the sediment out of it. I wasn't even aware that was something that needed to be done regularly.

Is that something I should try first?

The temperature adjustment goes from HOT, A, B, C, and VERY HOT. It's currently set to "B".
 

Last edited by bigbob1122; 11-08-13 at 06:11 PM.
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Old 11-08-13, 06:38 PM
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I've actually never emptied the sediment out of it. I wasn't even aware that was something that needed to be done regularly.
That is annual maintenance, but I doubt it'll fix your problem.

The temperature adjustment goes from HOT, A, B, C, and VERY HOT. It's currently set to "B".
So, how hot is that? Have you checked the water temperature at the tap? Do you have a water softener ahead of the water heater?
 
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Old 11-15-13, 02:19 PM
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I don't have a water softener. As far as the temperature of the water is concerned it's about 125 degrees.
 
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Old 11-15-13, 04:24 PM
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I think if that were my water heater, I'd replace both elements and the top thermostat and high limit. The condition of the incoming water makes a big difference in the life of an electric water heater. If you have hard water or a lot of calcium in the water, a water softener will drastically extend the life of the unit.
 
 

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