Electric Water Heater Question

Hi,
I have a 40 gallon electric water heater with 2 4500 Watt elements.
A co-worker gave me a 240V hour meter. It is actually two meters in one box. Out of curiosity, I hooked them to the heating elements of my water heater to monitor is usage and guage how much it costs to operate.
However, over the weekend I learned that only the bottom element comes on. Even after two showers and a load of laundry (on Hot) one right after the other, the top element never came on.
Both top and bottom are set at 125 F, and I turned to top one up higher and it does come on and works. But when both are set to 125, only the bottom comes on. I know they both can not come on at once, but I thought they would cycle.
Is this normal? Am I just not using enough water to make the top one come on? Should they both be set at the same temp? Should I adjust the top one to a higher temp, and/or the lower element to a lower temp?
Thanks in advance
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Hi,
I have a 40 gallon electric water heater with 2 4500 Watt elements.
A co-worker gave me a 240V hour meter. It is actually two meters in one box. Out of curiosity, I hooked them to the heating elements of my water heater to monitor is usage and guage how much it costs to operate.
However, over the weekend I learned that only the bottom element comes on. Even after two showers and a load of laundry (on Hot) one right after the other, the top element never came on.
Both top and bottom are set at 125 F, and I turned to top one up higher and it does come on and works. But when both are set to 125, only the bottom comes on. I know they both can not come on at once, but I thought they would cycle.
Is this normal? Am I just not using enough water to make the top one come on? Should they both be set at the same temp? Should I adjust the top one to a higher temp, and/or the lower element to a lower temp?
Thanks in advance
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the cold water is mixed into the tank the 2 thermostats are off a bit because of design and innacuracies... unless you live in the west with 08 kwh screw it go gas , in midwest elec is 40 to 60% more expensive
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The water heater is designed to run only one element at a time. There are two thermostats. One at the top and one at the bottom. If all the water in your heater were cold, the top thermostat comes on first. After it heats the top portion of the water, it sends power to the lower element. When the bottom half of the heater is heated the lower thermostat shuts power off to the element. When you run water, shower, ect., the hot water is taken from the top of the tank and replinished with cold fill water delivered by an anode rod that extends to the bottom of the tank. Since the cold water is being delivered to the bottom of the tank, its the lower thermostat that will sense this temperature demand first. Rarely will you exhaust the hot water supply to the top thermostat. But if this happens, the top will come on and the bottom will shut off. Typically, the lower element burns and goes bad faster than the top for this reason. So to make a long story short, your symtoms are normal
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On 17 Jul 2003 06:08:36 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.comHateSpam (AMEADOR) wrote:

The anode is a completly different piece than the fill pipe. Some (as most of the electrics around here do), have the cold water in on a fitting ner the bottom, rather that a fitting on the top (with an internal pipe to the bottom).
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