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Billy
Billy, Mechanical Contractor
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 22355
Experience:  State Licensed Mechanical Contractor
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We just drained our A O Smith ProMax Electric Hot Water Heater.Now

Resolved Question:

We just drained our A O Smith ProMax Electric Hot Water Heater.Now it won't heat. What is the problem and what do we need to do? We turned off the electricity connected the drain hose, basically followed the instructions in the manual.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Plumbing
Expert:  Billy replied 6 years ago.
Chat Conversation Started
Billy :

Did you wait until the tank was full to turn power back on?

Customer:

No

Billy :

If the elements got power before the water covered them, then they are most likely burned out. You can ohm them with a meter...or just replace. Check the reset button on the thermostat just in case

Customer:

Where is the reset button?

Billy :

Most electric hot water heaters have two thermostats, one near the top of the tank and one near the bottom, and are covered by removable metal cover plates. The thermostats are pressed firmly against the bare metal wall of the hot water heaters tank.


The top thermostat usually has a high limit switch that will trip if the water gets too hot. When it trips it shuts off the electricity to both the upper and lower heating elements.


To reset the high limit switch there is usually a red button that you must press.

Customer:

Pressed the top reset button. Now what?

Billy :

That would be it....if it does not reset..then odds are the elements burned out. do you have a electric test meter?

Customer:

How long should it take to heat after pushing the reset button. Or will the elements need to be replaced? This heater is only 3 years old.

Customer:

No. How hard is it to change the element.

Billy :

IF the elemnts are not bad you would see warm migration to hot pipe within 10-15 minutes. To change elements requires to drain again...unscrew the 2 elements and replace...fill fully and restore power. There are only 2 wires to each element so wiring is basic. It is just time consuming to drain...

Customer:

Where are the elements located? Since we have two do we replace both/

Billy :

sorry for delay....you have 2 raised panels on the side of the tank. The elements are under those 2 panels

Billy :

And replace both...unless you can get them tested for cotinuity

Billy :

continuity...sorry...ie: make sure they are good with a test meter

Customer:

Ok. Thank you. we will check and change tomorrow.

Billy :

I wish you luck...I hate it when one of my projects take "a left turn"

Customer:

Instruction booklet needs to have better info in them. The one we had did not say anything about filling the tank before turning on the electricity. Again thanks for your help. Now we know were to go from here.

Billy and 2 other Plumbing Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Billy replied 6 years ago.
Chat Conversation Ended

Your expert is gathering additional information and will be back with you shortly.
Expert:  Billy replied 6 years ago.
Let me know if you need further assistance