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Welcome to Just Answer! If you have 240 volts to the heating element between ***both** of the wires attached to each heating element , the meter will read 240 volts when you put the probes of your voltage test meter on them...If ***One*** of the two 240 volt wires is dead, you will get a 120 volt read at each wire connected to the heating element if you put one of your volt meter probes on a water pipe (ground) and the other test probe on two leads attached to the heating elements. Thats because the power from the one good line is feeding back through the heating element and giving you a false read. 120v from Line 1, to ground... In that case either one side of the 240 volt two pole breaker in the house breaker panel is bad, or the 'high temperature cut out switch' in the water heater is bad.-----------
If you wish to rate this answer positively, I will hold the question open for you and coach you a bit on how to check that and do the repair if you are good working with high voltage electricity.Phil