How To Remove Water Heater Element Without Element Wrench

How to Remove a Water Heater Element without an Element Wrench? Is It Possible?

You are here: Home»Blog»How to Disassemble and Reassemble a Water Heater Element Without Using an Element Wrench? Is That Even Possible? 4026Views Is it feasible to remove the element from a water heater without using an element wrench? Remove a water heater element without using an element wrench if you don’t have one. Changing or replacing a water heater element can be a difficult task, especially if you don’t have an element wrench. The majority of skilled plumbers agreed that we would be unable to turn a stuck element with a standard vice grip or a standard wrench.

As a result, we must make certain that we are using the appropriate tool when deleting an element.

These goods are hollow steel pipes that may also be used to exactly fit over the socket wrench handle of a space heater.

When it comes to heating elements, we offer two different types to choose from.

Screw-in water heaters are preferred by professional plumbers, especially for modern water heaters.

However, if you want to convert a screw-in element into a bolt-in element, you may purchase a universal adapter kit from the market.

In accordance with my findings, we’ll be in need of

  • A garden hose, a screwdriver, a water heater element wrench, a voltage tester, and a replacement heating element with a “O” ring are all required.

A garden hose, screwdrivers, a water heater element wrench, a voltage tester, and a replacement heating element with a “O” ring are all required.

Here’s the step-by-step guide on how to remove a water heater element that needs a replacement.

Check to verify that the circuit breaker at the electrical panel has been switched off before continuing. We may use the voltage tester to see whether any power is getting to our water heater and if so, how much. Remove the water heater element slowly and carefully to ensure that no electricity is being drawn from the system.

Step 2: Attach the garden hose.

We can now begin to connect the garden hose to our water heater, which is a big step forward. At this stage, we are attempting to determine whether or not sediments have clogged our drain valve. During this phase, we will not be required to drain our water tank.

Step 3: Turn off the water supply.

This step necessitates turning off the water supply. It is possible to switch off the water supply by shutting the water input valve, which is often located above our water heaters.

Allowing air to enter the tank will allow us to discharge the hot water that has been trapped inside the machine. Finally, we may finish this process by turning on the nearest faucet and turning on the hot water tap.

Step 4: Remove the access panel cover.

It is necessary to remove the cover for the access panel. We will be removing the access panel lid with a screwdriver, which we will demonstrate below. We can also see that the thermostat on our water heater is protected by a plastic cover. We have to be very gentle when removing this. This is also the stage at which we will need to examine the wiring. Is there anything that has been harmed or melted? We must recognize that any broken wires must be replaced as soon as possible in order to avoid any serious consequences.

Step 5: Remove the heating element.

The next step is to take the heating element out of the system. In order to remove this item, we will need to utilize a heating element wrench. Due to the fact that it has a large enough mouth to completely fit the exposed area of the element, this element wrench is the only wrench that can correctly remove this part from the vehicle. Because normal wrenches have the potential to cause harm to this component, professionals do not recommend using an alternative when removing this component. While there is enough water in the tank, we may now begin to lose the element in a counter-clockwise direction while the tank is still full.

Depending on the size of our water tank, this operation might take up to an hour.

Step 6: Clean the new element.

Next, the heating element must be removed from the unit. This item must be removed with the use of a heating element wrench. With its wide-enough mouth and ability to exactly fit at the exposed region of the element, this element wrench is the only wrench that can accurately remove this item. Because of the potential harm that ordinary wrenches may do, professionals do not recommend using an alternative when removing this item. With enough water in the tank, we can now begin to lose the element in a counter-clockwise direction while the tank is still filled.

Depending on the size of our water tank, this operation might take up to an hour.

Step 7: Refill the water tank.

The moment has come for us to re-fill our water heater tanks! Turn on the water supply to the heater and then turn off the drain valve to the heater. For the time being, I do not recommend that you turn on the power supply immediately. Before turning on the electricity, we need to make sure that our tank is completely filled. At this time, a half-full container of water might cause harm to the heating components. After that, inspect the freshly installed piece to see whether there is any leakage.

It may also be essential to adjust the “O” ring from time to time.

Step 8: Replace the covers.

The thermostat cover, insulation, and access panel cover may all be replaced when the refilling process is complete. If you have completed the replacement of the covers, we may finally switch on the water heater’s supply by flicking the circuit breaker on our panel. As a result of the presence of air within the water heater, we might see that the water flow is not consistent when we open our taps. This problem will finally resolve itself within a short amount of time. When it comes to eliminating parts, we must make certain that we are just employing the most appropriate and appropriate tools.

  • Each machine is meticulously built with security and individuality in mind.
  • Although an alternate tool may be effective for certain folks, I do not recommend that you use it on your PCs.
  • When it comes to removing a water heater element, I always make sure that I have the proper tools and equipment on available.
  • You may hire these individuals to complete the assignment for you for a very low cost.

So, what are your opinions on removing the water heater element without the use of an electric element wrench? Please share your thoughts in the comments box below! Are you looking for a high-quality water heater? Here’s what we think you should do:

Water Heater Element Wrench: What You Should Know

When working with an electric tank-style water heater, a water heater element wrench is a basic and affordable equipment that may assist you in removing and installing a heating element. It’s possible that changing the heating element in your water heater can solve your problem if you’re a do-it-yourselfer and your water heater isn’t heating as well as it used to. Find Local Plumbing Professionals This article will cover all you need to know about water heater element wrenches, as well as demonstrate how to properly use one of these instruments.

We’ll show you how to do it!

Water Heater Element Wrench

Despite the fact that certain water heaters (particularly older versions) employ plug-in heating components, the screw-in style is more frequent. The removal and replacement of a screw-in heating element, on the other hand, will necessitate the use of a specialized tool known as a water heater element wrench. The element wrench’s six-point end (often referred to as a hex) is 1-1/2 inches in length and fits snugly to the hex on the heating element head. By turning the wrench to the left or right, you may loosen or tighten the heating element.

Water Heater Element Wrench Size

In order to fit the normal 1-1/2 inch residential heating element head, nearly all hot water heater element wrenches are equipped with a 1-1/2 inch hex. Additionally, they’re typically at least 5-inches long, with cross holes drilled into the opposite end of the pipe so that a screwdriver may be inserted to provide additional torque as needed. A range of various designs and lengths of element wrenches are available, and they are affordable and simple to use.

How to Use a Water Heater Element Wrench

Water heater element wrenches are simple to operate and require no special skills or training. The following is the procedure for removing a heating element:

  • It is not difficult at all to use a water heater element wrench. To remove a heating element, follow the steps outlined below.

Watch the Video

Despite the fact that all water heater element wrenches are designed to remove and replace a heating element, there are a variety of designs available on the market today. A few of our favorites are as follows:

Camco Residential Water Heater Element Wrench

The Camco Water Heater Element Wrenchiis a zinc-plated tool that may be used with any conventional screw-in water heater element, including electric water heaters. The 1-1/2″ hex is designed to fit over the end of the heating element, and the cross holes on the opposite end may take a screwdriver to provide more torque when the hex is tightened. The tool’s 5-inch length allows it to fit into tight spaces that an adjustable wrench would find difficult or impossible to reach. Wrench for Residential Water Heaters by CamcoThe high duty zinc-plated element wrench from Camco is designed to remove elements from water heaters that are difficult to reach.

Camco Anode/Element Wrench

With two hex ends, the Camco Anode/Element Wrenchiis capable of loosening and tightening not just the water heater element, but also the anode rod, as well as other similar applications. The 1-1/2 inch hex element end is compatible with all standard screw-in water heater elements, and the 1-1/16 inch hex anode rod end is compatible with all standard anode rods on both residential and recreational vehicle heaters, respectively. Each end is equipped with two screwdriver holes, which allow for the application of additional torque.

The Camco Anode/Element Wrench measures 10 inches in length and is made of zinc-plated steel construction. Wrench for Anode and ElementThe Camco Anode and Element Wrench is unusual in that it can be used for both heating elements and anode rods.

Supplying Demand Water Heater Element Wrench

It’s worth mentioning that the water heater element wrench from Supplying Demand is likewise a two-sided wrench. One hex end is designed to accommodate 1-1/2 inch element heads, while the other is designed to fit the more difficult-to-find 1-7/8 inch element head. The tool is 5-inches in length and is equipped with a pair of cross holes that help to increase torque. It is compatible with electric water heaters from all major manufacturers. Wrench for Supplying and DemandElement The Supply Demand Element Wrench is available in two sizes: the standard 1-1/2 inch hex and the more difficult-to-find 1-7/8 inch hex.

Camco Professional Water Heater Element Socket

Unlike other water heater element sockets on the market, the Camco Professional Water Heater Element Socket is designed to be utilized with a normal 1/2-inch socket drive. Attaching the socket to a 1/2-inch drive ratchet will allow you to remove typical 1-1/2″ screw-in electric water heater elements with ease. It is especially beneficial to use the Camco 1-1/2 inch hex socket if the water heater element has become rusted in its mounting bracket. In order to remove tough and tenacious heating parts, you will be able to obtain more force.

How to Remove a Heating Element Without a Water Heater Element Wrench

Although a hot water heater element wrench is a useful tool, do you really need one to remove or replace a heating element in your water heater? The quick answer is that it does not. It is possible to utilize a Drive x 1-1/2 inch socket if you have a 1/2 inch drive socket. The aperture in the socket is large enough to accommodate the hex end on all conventional home water heater elements. Using the 1-1/2 socket, you may easily and quickly remove a water heater element that does not have an element wrench attached to it.

If you want greater force to release a rusted or obstinate piece, a breaker bar might be used to accomplish this.

However, many homeowners find it less expensive to purchase the water heater element wrench rather than purchasing the wrench and just using a screwdriver or other tool to remove the element from the water heater.

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How to Remove a Seized Water Heater Element

Unfortunately, water heater components can become clogged with sediment. They can get rusted and corroded in their current location over time. As a matter of fact, they might become extremely tough to get rid of. However, even the most recalcitrant heating element may be tamed with a few simple tactics. As a starting point, consider utilizing a 1-1/2-inch socket. It is more likely that a socket will provide greater torque and force than a water heater element wrench in the majority of circumstances.

  • Otherwise, try using a wire brush to clean away any rust or corrosion that may have built up around the threads.
  • Apply it with a toothbrush around the head of the heating element, then wipe the area off with a towel to prevent it from leaking.
  • In the following step, install a 1-1/2 socket over the element and rotate it to the left.
  • Using a breaker bar, if this does not work, is an option.
  • Using a propane torch to heat the exterior of the fitting (not the element) is another approach that we do not recommend you try on your own because it might be extremely dangerous.
  • If none of the solutions listed above work, you’ll have to drill the heating element out of the wall.

24-hour plumbing service is available for emergencies. Repair – Install – Replace is a three-step process.


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How to Replace a Water Heater Element: A Step-by-Step Guide

It is possible that a water heater element may need to be changed. It is not necessary to replace your water heater only because the heating element has stopped working; instead, you may repair or replace it. Although changing a water heater element may appear to be a challenging undertaking, the majority of homeowners are capable of doing this repair themselves. The likelihood that one or both of your water heater’s heating elements are malfunctioning is high if your water heater takes a long time to heat up, runs out of hot water, or fails to supply any hot water at all.

See also:  How Far Can Sump Pump Pump Water?

Replacing a Hot Water Heater Element

If your water heater is more than six years old, you may want to think about replacing it with a new one. Water heaters normally have a lifespan of 6 to 10 years, so if your heater is more than a decade old, you may anticipate it to begin having difficulties much sooner rather than later. As a bonus, because modern water heaters are more energy efficient than older models, you’ll save money on your monthly utility bills as well.

Checking Your Water Heater Heating Element

Before rushing in and replacing your water heater’s heating element, make sure that the element is, in fact, the source of the problem. Sometimes, after replacing the heating element, it is discovered that the problem was not with the heating element in the first place. This can be accomplished by first checking to see whether a circuit breaker has been tripped or if the power has been mistakenly turned off. If the breaker is in good working order, the next step is to examine the reset button on the temperature cutoff device.

It’s usually represented with a red button.

If you have access to a multimeter, you may verify the continuity of the element.

Using this brief video, you will be guided through the procedure step-by-step.

Preparing to Change Your Water Heater’s Heating Element

The heating elements are sometimes referred to as immersion heaters since they are completely submerged in the water of the tank during operation. Keep in mind that heating components are only utilized on electric water heaters, which is vital to know. Gas water heaters heat water in a completely different way than electric water heaters.

Heating Element Style

There are two distinct types of heating elements: infrared and radiant. Screw-in: This is the sort of heating element that we will be discussing because it is the most prevalent. They are commonly found on all modern water heaters, and the element is secured in place with a screwdriver. Installed as a bolt-in element: There are various distinct designs for bolt-in elements, and if you have an older water heater, it’s probable that this kind was used.

The element is held in place by four bolts that go through it. If you wish to convert a screw-in element into a bolt-in element, you may purchase a universal adapter kit to do so.

Heating Element Location

There are two types of heating elements: radiant and infrared. This is the sort of heating element we will be discussing because it is the most commonly encountered. They are commonly found on all newer water heaters, and the element is secured in place with a screwdriver or other tool. ‘Bolt-in’ elements are available in a variety of designs; if you have an older water heater, it’s probable that this type of element was used in its installation. Using four bolts, the piece is held in place. If you need to convert a screw-in element into a bolt-in element, you may purchase a universal adapter kit to do so.

Purchasing New Heating Elements

Purchase new heating elements with the same voltage, wattage, and type (screw-in or bolt-in) as the heating element you are replacing if you want to keep your existing system running efficiently. The new element’s voltage should always be the same as the voltage of the old element. However, if you want to lengthen the life of the element, you might choose a lesser wattage. You should keep in mind that the element will also produce less heat. Never replace an element with a higher wattage than the one you replaced.

If you are unable to locate it, you can always conduct a simple web search using the model number of your water heater (found on the name plate).

Types of Water Heater Elements

There are three different kinds of water heater elements. It is possible that your water heater is reaching the end of its service life and that you will wish to replace it with the least costly high watt density element available. The other, more expensive solutions should be considered if your heater is modern and you reside in a region where hard water is prevalent. Consider each of the following in further detail:

High Watt Density Heating Element

When it comes to water heater elements, High Watt Density Elements are the most popular and may be utilized in any replacement scenario as long as the wattage and voltage are compatible. In the majority of situations, a high watt density element will be the same type of element that was originally installed in your water heater. The corrosion of high-wattage density components results in a reduced life cycle for the elements. You may anticipate that these elements will be the least expensive of the three types to be purchased.

Low Watt Density Heating Element

Those who live in places with hard water will benefit from low-wattage density components. Many are constructed with a fold-back design to provide more heating area. Despite the fact that they have a lower watt density, there is no reduction in efficiency. The lime scale build-up that is frequent in locations with hard water can be reduced as a result of this. You can use a low watt density element to replace a high watt density element as long as the wattage and voltage are the same as the original element.

Element with a Low Watt Density (DERNORD) The DERNORD Foldback heating element has a low watt density and is ideal for small spaces. It is offered in two power ratings: 4500 watts and 5500 watts.

Lime Life Element

A limited 5-year guarantee is provided on these high-end components. Lime life elements feature an ultra-low watt density and a high-quality nickel and stainless steel surface that prevents the accumulation of lime scale on the element’s surface. Because they are resistant to dry burning, these components are an ideal choice if you live in a region where water supply levels are inconsistent. Lime life components are often the most costly element; yet, once installed, they will frequently outlast the life of the water heater itself.

It is offered in three different power ratings: 4500 watts, 5500 watts, and 6500 watts.

Necessary Supplies

You’ll need the following items in order to make changes to an element:

  • The following items are required: garden hose, water heater element wrench, voltage tester, new heating element with “O” ring.

Replacing a Heating Element

Replacing the heating element in a water heater is a reasonably straightforward procedure. Keep in mind, though, that you will be working with both electricity and water, which are two things that should not be mixed in any way. If you are not comfortable with the situation, you should contact a certified plumber. Your first and foremost concern should always be safety.

How to Replace a Heating Element

Step 1: Turn off the electricity.

  • Circuit breakers are located in the electrical panel and should be turned off. Check the voltage of the water heater to ensure that the electricity is no longer reaching the water heater. Due to the fact that you will be dealing with electricity and water, it is necessary that the water heater be switched off before beginning.

2nd step: connect the drain hose to the drain valve

  • Connection of the Drain Valve with the hose in Step 2.

Step 3: Shut off the water supply.

  • Close the cold water inlet valve on the water heater, which is often placed above the water heater, to turn off the water supply to the water heater. Allowing air to enter the tank will relieve the pressure in the hot water system. To accomplish this, turn on a nearby faucet. Only the hot water tap should be opened, not the cold. Make certain that the tap is left open.

Step 4: Remove the Access Panel Cover from the Access Panel.

  • To remove the cover from the access panel, use a screwdriver to pry it up. The upper water heater element is housed within the upper panel. The lower element is housed in the lower panel, and there is normally insulation between the panel door and the thermostat itself. Set the insulation away in a cool, dry location
  • The thermostat should be protected by a plastic casing. Remove the lid in a gentle manner. Check the cables with a volt meter to make sure there is no electricity flowing through them
  • Examine the electrical wiring. Is there any damage to any of the wires? Is there anything that has melted? An element that has become overheated as a result of silt might cause damage to the wiring. It is necessary to repair any damaged wiring. Disconnect the two element wires from the heating element by loosening the screws that hold them in place.

Step 5: Disconnect the heating element from the circuit.

  • To remove the heating element, use a heating element wrench. With a large mouth that fits over the exposed section of the element, it’s particularly intended for removing electric water heater elements from water heaters. Whilst the tank is still partially filled with water, loosen the element by rotating it in a counter-clockwise direction. The weight of the water will assist in keeping the tank in place. Drain the tank by opening the drain valve after you’re satisfied that you’ve been able to release the heating element. This might take anything from a few minutes to an hour, depending on the size of your tank. Remove the element from the equation. A rubber gasket, often known as a “O” ring, will be used to seal the tank. Make certain to remove the “O” ring that came with the element.

Installing the New Heating Element is the sixth step.

  • Clear away any dirt or debris from the threads and gasket region of the replacement element before installing it. Attach the new “O” ring to the new element using the new “O” ring. NEVER EVER EVER EVER use the old “O” ring
  • To install the element, gently put it into the tank and tighten it with the element wrench. Attach the two wires to the element and secure them in place by tightening the screws that hold them in position. Ensure that the wires are tight and will not slip by checking them twice.

Step 7: Fill the Tank with Water

  • Drain the water heater by closing the drain valve. Turn the water supply to the water heater on. At this time, do not switch on the electricity. If the tank is not completely filled with water before turning on the electricity, the heating components will be damaged. Ensure that the newly installed piece does not have any leaks. Turning off the cold water supply and tightening the element will stop any leaks from occurring. Removing the element and repositioning the “O” ring may be essential in some cases. It is normal for water to begin sputtering out of the open faucet tap as the tank fills (left open in Step 3). The water is forcing the air out of the line as it flows through it. As soon as there is a consistent flow of water, the faucet may be turned off. Replace the plastic thermostat cover, insulation, and access panel cover with new materials. You may turn the electricity back on to the water heater once the tank has been fully refilled by flicking the circuit breaker back on. The fact that there will almost certainly be air in the hot water pipes means that it is not unusual for the hot water taps throughout the home to splutter. Fortunately, this will subside in a short amount of time. Open each faucet individually, if desired, until you get a continuous stream of water
  • However, this is not necessary.

Take a look at the video

How to Replace a Heating Element Without Draining the Tank

It is feasible to replace the heating element in your water heater without having to drain the tank. Keep in mind, though, that it can be a little more difficult in some cases. If you’d like to give it a shot, the video below will walk you through the process. Take a look at the video

Help in Removing Screw-In Element for Electric Water Heater

Every now and again, removing a rusted piece may be a real pain in the neck. Try cleaning out any scale around the threads with a wire brush first (breaking off, of course, so that the wiring isn’t in the way!) if you have one available. After that, rub some vinegar into the joint. This may or may not be of much use, as it is unlikely to penetrate far enough to liberate a severely frozen joint, but it may be sufficient in some circumstances. To be honest, I agree with Bus Driver that using a high-quality socket (6-point is preferable in this situation to 12-point, although either one would do) is preferable to using those thin-wall element removal tools.

In order to gain extra leverage, try threading a longer rod through the tool’s hole, or alternatively, attach a big pipe wrench to the element tool and use it as an additional “persuader.” However, considering that it is only a $6-$7 item, it is acceptable to treat it as a throwaway, especially in light of the fact that it is cheaper than a new hot water heater).

Wishing you the best of luck with this.

As an aside, once you’ve replaced the element (if you haven’t already), make sure to completely fill the tank with water and “bleed” out any trapped air by running a hot-water faucet for a few minutes before reconnecting the electricity. A dry element can burn out in a very short period of time!

How to Remove Stuck Heating Elements From a Hot Water Heater

Image courtesy of Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images & Stock Images Replacing the element in a hot water heater is typically a basic procedure. The screw-in type is the most often encountered. Excessive heat, silt, and corrosion can all cause the element threads to get bonded together. With a conventional wrench or vise grips, a trapped element will not be turned at all. Obtain a six-point socket set with a 1/2″ drive socket wrench to complete this task. The big socket wrench provides extra force, and the socket is snugly fitted over the heating element to prevent it from being accidentally turned off.

See also:  How To Clean Out A Tankless Water Heater?

Breaker bars are hollow steel pipes that are designed to fit over the handle of a socket wrench.

Step 1

Photograph courtesy of Jupiterimages/liquidlibrary/Getty Images. In most cases, replacing the element of a hot water heater is a basic procedure. Generally speaking, a screw-in is the most popular variety. It is possible for the element threads to become glued together by excessive heat or silt and rust. With a conventional wrench or vise grips, a trapped element will not turn. Obtain a six-point socket set with a 1/2″ drive socket wrench to complete this task.

In some cases, a breaker bar will be required.

In order to remove difficult fasteners and trapped heating elements, they provide the necessary additional leverage.

Step 2

In a tiny cup, combine half vinegar and half water to make a solution. The solution should be dipped into a toothbrush and rubbed in between the seam of the heating element and one of the heating tank’s side walls. Using a generous amount of the solution, but without allowing it to leak excessively, Allow for a 20-minute resting period after mixing the solution.

Step 3

Place the socket above the heating element and try to spin it in the opposite direction of the current. To get the heating element to start rotating, tap the handle of the socket wrench with a hammer a couple of times.

Step 4

If the heating element would not budge, slide the breaker bar over the socket wrench handle to release it. As a safety precaution, have a friend hold the top of the socket wrench above the hot element while you crank the wrench with the bar.

Step 5

Once the heating element begins to revolve, remove the bar from the socket wrench handle and store it somewhere safe. The heating element should be turned as much as possible with the socket wrench until it is entirely removed from the water tank.

How do you remove a water heater element without a wrench?

A step-by-step tutorial on how to remove a water heater element that has to be replaced is provided below.

  1. Step 1: Disconnect the electrical circuit breaker
  2. Step 2: Connect the garden hose to the faucet. Step 3: Shut off the water supply line. Step 4: Remove the cover from the access panel. Step 5: Disconnect the heating element. Step 6: Thoroughly clean the new element.

Water Heater Socket with a 1-1/2-inch drive. The 6-point opening is designed to accommodate the most common size of electric water heater element, and it fits securely against the hex end of the element so you can apply maximum torque without sliding. In the same way, what kind of thread is a water heater element? The element is NPS (national pipe straight), and the connection is NPT (national pipe straight) (national pipe tapered).

They have 1″ and 11 1/2threads per inch, respectively. Then, how do you unstick a water heater element that has been stuck? How to Unstick Heating Elements from a Hot Water Heater That Have Become Stuck

  1. Bend the wires of the heating element out of the way
  2. In a tiny cup, combine half vinegar and half water to make a solution
  3. Make an attempt to spin the socket counterclockwise by positioning it above the heating element. If the heating element refuses to budge, slide the breaker bar over the socket wrench handle to free it.

In what range does the price of an anode rod fall? If a tank lasts 10 years and costs $800 to install, it equates to $80 in annual expenses. The majority of tanks come with one anode, which, in most waters, will last four years before needing to be replaced. Consider the following scenario: you charge $100 to repair the rod.

stubborn water heater element

Welcome! The following are the website’s rules, as well as some suggestions on how to best use this forum. To locate a contractor in your region, please click here. I’m attempting to change a bottom element on my water heater, which is proving to be a very tough task. Consider myself to have tried everything – found the tool that works; used liqid wrench and WD-40; etc. Do you have any recommendations? 0


  • I used to do a lot of electric WH element replacements in Utah because of the “hard water.” As Ken mentioned, there are basically two categories of people. The hex headed variant has a threaded out hex head. Get yourself a decent six-point socket. They are little more than knuckle skinners for those tin element sockets. Typically, a short extension cord and a breaker bar will be required. The four-bolt ones should be straightforward to remove, unless a bolt is snapped off or stripped. Then it becomes a chore! When you’re feeling really confident or dumb, you can switch components without having to deplete the tank. This continues until you come across one that has enlarged like a toggle bolt within the tank. Make certain that the homeowner is not looking! In order to get out of this “hot water,” some major trash talking will be required. Best of luck. First, turn off the electricity. rodeo calif. To learn more about this professional, please visit their ad in the “Find A Professional” section by clicking here. 0
  • Replacement of an element You should have your wet/dry vac ready with a tiny piece of hose attached so that you can pull all of the “oyster shell” out of the bottom of the tank if you live in a hard water location. I use a 24″ length of 3/4-inch pex with the end cut at an angle and taped to the end of my shop vac hose to make the connection (with the filter taken out). Jeff 0
  • Unyielding constituents It’s the screwed-in variety – My element socket is the sort that goes over the element and you spin it with a screwdriver inserted into the two holes – the thing doesn’t appear to be moving at all – can you think of anything else except liquid wrench that I might use to loosen it up a little? 0
  • An obstinate element Put some force behind a 1/2″ or 3/4″ drive socket, which you can achieve by attaching a long ratchet handle or breaker bar to it, like Hot Rod suggested. I believe the size of the socket is 1 1/4″. However, you should double-check. It has always been effective for me. Luke, use the force if you have to. I don’t believe a screwdriver will provide you with sufficient leverage. Also, be careful with screwdrivers since they can shatter and fly. Instead of using a screwdriver, you may try wrapping an 18- or 24-inch pipe wrench around the socket. I can assure you that it is not welded in. You just need to give me a big enough lever and a place to put it and I can shift the entire world! Archimedes, or someone knowledgeable, once stated that a hot rod is a good thing. To learn more about this professional, please visit their ad in the “Find A Professional” section by clicking here. With a cold chisel, I’ve had more luck striking each flat side of the hex to each element, which has resulted in 0. 0
  • The unyielding element WD-40, on the other hand, is best used as a water displacer (think wet spark plug wires), despite marketing to the contrary – for example, “P B Blaster” (from a *real* auto parts store), Kano Labs “Kroil” or “Mouse Milk Oil,” (from an aircraft parts supplier), or any other similar industrial or auto/truck repair grade of penetrant. At Sears, you may also purchase a *six* point 1 1/2″ socket with a 1/2″ or 3/4″ drive, as well as a breaker handle and, if necessary, a 3/4″ to 1/2″ square drive adaptor (or the auto parts store). Check to see that the water heater is securely fastened and will not tip. You’ll be OK as soon as you get it out of your system. If you have hard or semihard water, be sure to get an element with a “low watt density.” 0
  • strick Another tip is to take your six-point socket and polish the working end of it flat using a grinder before using it. The amount of metal you have available to hold onto an element is limited, and most sockets only grip the corners of the element’s edges. Even with a six point socket, I’ve been able to round elements. Gently stand on the breaker bar for a few seconds and voila, something will give! Best of luck. 0 represents the hot water element. Electric impact wrench (also known as an electric impact wrench) 0
  • Don’t give up and be patient with yourself. Larry is correct in that the majority of good sockets feature a chamfer to facilitate the fitting of the socket to the fastener. This will squander a significant chunk of the narrow profile that is all that you have to work with on the element in question. Look for a socket with less of a chamfer, or grind the one you already have down. As HR stated, it is definitely a 6 point game. The PB blaster deserves a standing ovation. It accomplishes what wd40 could only dream of. I’ve also heard nothing but amazing things about Kroil. I’d be interested in trying anything with the name “mouse milk oil.” When you have a name like that. It has to be of high quality. There are four steps involved in releasing anything. Torque, heat, impact, and chemicals are all examples of kinematics. The fifth approach would be electrolysis, although it would not be appropriate in your situation. You should try to heat it up as hot as you possibly can without causing a fire. After then, let it to cool or even quench it quickly by sprinkling water on it (empty tank first). Try it both ways and see which you prefer. It’s best to use a decent flat-punching tool and hammer to knock it about a few times (without mushrooming it). If you can borrow a nice socket and electric impact, I’m sure it would suffice. When it’s finished, you’ll be in a terrific mood. Kevin To learn more about this professional, please visit their ad in the “Find A Professional” section by clicking here. 0
  • Tap tap tap
  • Tap tap tap obtain a firm grasp on the situation Lay a cheater bar over the wrench, tie it down, then tap the cheater bar a few times with a hammer to secure it. This will establish a Rythym. Spray a tiny amount of liquid heat (bolt remover or WD 40 type thing) on it and let it sit for a few minutes before going back and rapping on it again, this time much harder. probably three or four solid raps Turn the wrench around the other way and see if you can tighten it the same way you did the first time using the same method. In other words, as it tightens, it will relax. In my spare time, I’ve been tearing apart some heavy-duty fittings:) Do not forget to get a CRAFTSMAN SOCKET and a BREAKER BAR while you’re at it. I’ve placed a larger piece of pipe on the breaker to allow the element to come free. In the event that you purchase Craftsman, you will be able to replace it when you snap the breaker bar if the problem is that bad. A *6 POINT* 1 1/2″ socket is proving difficult to locate. does anyone know of a store that stocks them? 0 points
  • 6 points Sears (perhaps not on the shelf), auto/truck parts stores, Mac tools, Snap-On tools, certain major hardware stores, and so on are examples of places to look. Prices will differ based on the vendor and the brand name. If leverage scares you, another alternative is to use inertia instead. Anyone who works on bikes will have a hand impact driver on hand. Install the socket, place it over the element, and one tremendous smacky will either loosen it or cause the earth to rotate in a different direction! Not necessarily the location of the planet, like in the case of the huge lever I spoke to before. As Larry sensibly pointed out, here is a low-cost socket with a flat surface for your convenience. This is from one of those mail-order discount tool companies that you see everywhere. I suppose that is harbor freight. These days, they may be found everywhere. Although it is really cheap, the quality is not very good. Drop a tool on concrete to determine the quality of the material. Rings made of high-quality steel. Grades that are inexpensive From across the shop, I can tell the difference between “thunk” and “thunk.” You must know a truck technician who would be willing to loan you a truck for a one-time use? rodeo calif. To learn more about this professional, please visit their ad in the “Find A Professional” section by clicking here. 0
  • It’s possible to save money. It is possible that you have more money invested in the tools than the cost of a new electric tank, unless you intend to use them again. What is the age of the one you have in there right now? Is there any remaining warranty on it? Is your water hard, and is the sediment in your tank a big problem? Have a good time. 0
  • This is what I was thinking Also, John, simply go out and get another water heater. Warmest Regards J. Lockard is a fictional character created by author J. Lockard. 0

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How to Remove Water Heater Elements

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  • Question Does it appear like there will be air in the hot water line? Yes, however if you run the water for a few minutes, it should flush out all of the air that has built up in the pipes. Question Is it possible to put it up without draining the water? Yes. It’s difficult, but it’s doable. First and foremost, check certain that the electricity has been switched off and that the water in the cylinder is cold. Close the main water shutoff valve and open a hot tap, leaving it open for a few minutes to drain any water that may have accumulated on the pipes or in the expansion vessel. Once this is done, remove the hot outlet hose from the cylinder. You can feed an inspection camera attached to your phone into that hole, allowing you to visually check it and assess its condition. Afterwards, reconnect the hot outlet pipe, turn off the hot tap, open the main water stopcock, and then open the hot tap again to release any trapped air that may have been trapped there. Return to the cylinder and inspect it for any leaks that may have occurred. Question In what size is the nut that is attached to the end of the element? The elements are included with a nut and a tool for removing them, so you won’t have to worry about knowing how to do it. Take your heater’s information with you, and you’ll be able to use the “gadget” that comes with the element to remove and replace the heating element. Question Is there anything else that can prevent the hot water tank from heating up? There is an item on your geyser that is referred as as a thermostat. This regulates the real temperature and instructs the element when to turn on and off the heating element. Because the thermostat is most likely not functioning properly, you should get assistance from an electrician.
See also:  How To Check If My Water Pump Is Working?

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  • Occasionally, a tiny bit of tightening the part (by rotating it clockwise) might aid in loosening it in preparation for removal. If the heating element becomes trapped, there are three options for removing it. 1. Try heating the element with a propane torch to see if it loosens up any stuck spots. 2. Fill the tank only half with water so that the tank does not move when you are attempting to rotate the element. 3. If everything else fails, use a hammer to pry the terminals and plastic end of the elemento out of the way. Drill and tap two 1/4-inch holes in the freshly exposed surface of the element “holes drilled into the element Keep the holes near to the center of the element so that the element is not damaged. Twist two long 1/4 inch threads “To remove the element, insert the two bolts into the holes with a wrench or vice grips and twist. In the event that you are having difficulty removing the element, consider repeatedly hammering on the element with a tiny hammer to loosen the rust. It is likely that if your element has failed due to age, you will also need to replace the Temperature and Pressure Relief valve. Bring up a sink and turn on the hot water to bleed any air out of the pipe
  • Opening the hot water side of a faucet will assist in draining it more quickly
  • Instead of utilizing the element wrench, it is sometimes feasible to get a pipe wrench or pliers on the element and avoid using it. Investing in an element wrench is definitely worth the four dollars ($4.00 USD)
  • You may want to jot down the pattern that runs from the old element to the new element for future reference. You don’t want to make a mess of the cables. You can photograph the thermostat with your smart phone before disconnecting the wires if you have one. Make sure you replace the wires in the right order by referring to the photograph. The metal jacket of a hot water heater appears to be deceptively sharp at first glance. It is possible to avoid any painful wounds by wearing leather gloves when removing the components.

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  • Although a hot water heater’s metal jacket appears smooth, it is actually rather sharp. When you buy new elements, they normally come with washers
  • When you change them, make sure you place the washer on the element. Make certain that the tank seat where the element gasket is going to be installed is free of debris. Check to see that everything is clean and clear of any rust pits. It will leak if this is not done. Consult a professional if you are unclear how to switch off the electricity or if you want to double-check that the electricity has been turned off to the heater.


Things You’ll Need

  • The following tools are recommended: screwdriver, element wrench (optional), and a very small wrench for smaller water heaters (e.g., 17 gal).

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While you may use a pipe wrench or pliers for the element wrench, it is preferable. Furthermore, because breaker bars are hollow steel pipes, they may be used to remove an element wrench from a heater’s socket wrench handle because they can fit over the handle of the heater’s socket wrench.

How do I know if my hot water heater element is bad?

The probe on the multitester should be touched to each screw on the element. A poor element is one in which you receive no reading or only the maximum reading. Element resistance varies depending on their size and power, therefore it is common to get a reading between 10 and 16 ohms, with higher readings for 3,500 watt elements and lower readings for 5,500 watt elements.

Will a water heater work with one element?

Yes, even if the bottom element fails, a water heater can continue to operate. In most water heaters, the top heating element is in charge of controlling the thermostat, and the water heater will continue to function even if the bottom heating element fails. Consequently, if the top heating element is operational, the system can still provide some hot water even if the bottom heating element is not.

How do you remove a stubborn water heater element?

In a tiny cup, combine half vinegar and half water to make a solution. The solution should be dipped into a toothbrush and rubbed in between the seam of the heating element and one of the heating tank’s side walls. Using a generous amount of the solution, but without allowing it to leak excessively, Allow for a 20-minute resting period after mixing the solution.

What happens when a heating element goes out in a water heater?

It is possible for the heating elements within an electric water heater tank to fail, resulting in a lack of hot water if you have one. Occasionally, your water may slowly begin to cool down, and this might be due to the element becoming damaged or failing. If the second part fails, you’ll be left with only cold water to clean your hands.

What causes electric water heater elements to burn out?

Your water heater’s heating element might be damaged or completely destroyed if the voltage increases suddenly.

Voltage ratings are assigned to each component of a water heater. Voltages that are higher than the rating of an element will cause it to fail.

How do you replace an element in a water heater?

Draining the tank is the first step in replacing an element. Close the cold-water input valve while the electricity is still turned off (Figure A). Start by turning on the hot water tap in the kitchen. Then connect a garden hose to the drain valve and turn it on to allow the tank to empty completely.

Which water heater element is bad?

The lower thermostat is just responsible for controlling the lower element. When the top element is operational but the bottom element is not, you will have a limited supply of hot water. The thermostats are less likely to be the source of the problem than the elements. Water heater thermostats, on the other hand, might malfunction, necessitating the need to examine them.

What are the symptoms of a bad water heater?

The following are signs that your water heater is failing: no hot water There isn’t enough hot water. The water temperature is insufficient. The water is a rusty tint. Audible popping sounds coming from the water heater The scent of rotting eggs

How do I change elements in my hot water heater?

Insert the rubber gasket that was included with the new element into the threaded end of the element. Hand-fit the new part into position, checking to see that it rotates freely, suggesting that it has not been cross threaded, before continuing. Hand-tighten the heating element until it is snug, then use the heating element wrench to finish tightening it.

DIY Water Heater Testing and Repair

Occasionally, the heating elements on electric water heaters break long before the water heater itself fails, but changing them in a hot water heater is a simple Do It Yourself repair.

Tools Required

The majority of the time, replacing one or both of the heating elements will address the problem if your electric hot water heater is taking a long time to heat up, running out of hot water more quickly than it used to, or not delivering any hot water. Water heater repairs are simple, and replacement components are affordable ($8 to $20), and they are easily accessible at home centers, hardware shops, and appliance parts dealers across the country. How to test the heating elements, remove one if it’s defective, and replace it with a new one will be demonstrated.

If your heater is reaching its end of life, it may be more cost-effective to replace it than to repair it.

Other Causes of Water Not Getting Hot

Of course, there are a variety of additional factors that might contribute to a shortage of hot water. Before you begin testing the elements, double-check that the circuit breaker is not tripped and that it is in the on position. Press the reset button on the high-temperature cutoff, which is positioned slightly above the top thermostat, at the same time. Although resetting either the circuit breaker or the high-temperature cutoff may remedy the problem, the fact that they were tripped in the first place may suggest that there is an electrical fault with the system in the first place.

Assuming that the heating components are working properly, the thermostats or cutoff switch may be defective. Because they’re affordable (around $20 for both the thermostat and the cutoff switch), you could just replace them rather than go through the trouble of testing them.

Video: How to Test Your Water Heater Element

  • Turn off the power at the circuit breaker and remove the metal covers to reveal the thermostats and heating components under the metal covers.
  • Pro tip: Check that the power has been turned off by tapping the electrical connections with a noncontact voltage detector.

Test the Wires

  • Please keep in mind that if the wires are covered by metal conduit, the tester will not read the voltage. Take off the metal thermostat cover that is mounted on the side of the water heater, peel out all of the insulation, and place the tester in close proximity to the wires that go up to the top of the high-temperature cutoff switch.

Placing the tester against the metal water heater shell will yield results.

  • Note: If the tester does not light up, it is okay to proceed with the testing of the components.

What’s Inside a Water Heater and How It Works

Note: If the tester does not illuminate, it is okay to proceed with the testing of the components.

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Test Continuity for a Burned-Out Element

  • Please keep in mind that you will need a continuity tester ($5 to $10) for this stage.

A continuity tester (about $5 to $10) will be required for this procedure.

  • Note: If the tester does not illuminate, the element should be replaced.

Test for a Short Circuit

  • The alligator clip should be attached to one of the element screws. Touch the tester probe to the mounting bracket for the element
  • Repeat the process on the other screw.
  • It is important to note that if the tester light illuminates either time, there is a short. Replace the element with a new one

The Secret of the Red Button

The tester light should be on in either case if there is a short in the circuit. Replace the element with something else.

Remove the Bad Element

  • Close the cold-water inflow valve
  • Turn on the hot-water faucet in the kitchen
  • And repeat. Connect a garden hose to the drain valve and turn it on to allow the tank to empty completely.
  • Note: A water heater element wrench (available for $5 at home centers and hardware stores) is required for thread-in–type elements such as those shown below.

Remove the old heating element by unscrewing it using a heating element wrench.

  • Pro tip: To spin the socket, you’ll need a long, robust Phillips screwdriver with a flat blade. To free the threads that have become stuck, use a cold chisel and a hammer to loosen the threads that have become stuck.

Install the New Element

  • Insert the replacement element into the water heater and tighten it down with the heating element wrench if necessary. Reconnect the wires, checking to see that the connections are secure. Remove the insulation and metal covers and replace them.

Buying Heating Elements

Replace your heating element with one that has the same wattage as your existing one. For information on wattage if your old element isn’t labeled, look at the nameplate on the water heater, your instruction manual, or search online using the model number found on the nameplate. Heating elements are secured to the water heater with either a big thread and nut, as illustrated below, or with four bolts and nuts, as indicated in the diagram below. Most home centers carry the type we’ve shown, but if you’re replacing the four-bolt version, you may purchase an adaptor kit.

Low-density parts that are more costly are typically folded back.

Replacement of your old element with a low-density element will result in more efficient functioning and a longer service life.

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