electric water heater will not heat

just bought this old home with this Rheem/GE electric water heater 50 gallon tank
here's what happened with this heater
Yesterday I noticed the water was cold so I reset the circuit breaket for water heater from my Kitchen wall MAIN then after that I heard sparking sound Then I noticed the there was a leak on the top of the tank from the pressure relief pipe which was causing to collect water on the electric connection so I dried that out and called the repair man but he just reconnected the wires after drying the top and suggested to replace the water heater. After that The water was hot for three to five hours and then cold. Any suggestion guys
thanks in advance
rashid
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replace the water heater
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Kill the electric to the heater. Confirm that it's dead. Open the upper element access panel. The house wiring connects with the water heater's wiring in a junction box on top of the unit, from there the wiring goes to the upper thermostat behind this panel, then to the lower thermostat behind the bottom panel. Once all the wiring is visible, check for corrosion, or any bad connections at these points and replace as necessary. I would especially be looking for the location where the "sparking" occurred.

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Turn the breaker to the WH off and go shopping for a new one.
Since the repair man indicated he thought you needed a new one, makes me believe that yours is old enough that it is not worth trying to repair. Useful life of water heaters depends greatly on local water quality.
Repairing a marginal tank is a waste of time and money.

--
Joseph Meehan

Dia \'s Muire duit
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sounds like the leak from above is shorting the power, tripping breaker.
sorry you need a new heater. leaks on old tanks arent worth fixing it will just leak again soon somewhere else and your back where you started.
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On Tue, 04 Dec 2007 19:37:18 -0800, Rashid wrote:

Water heaters don't last forever. The life of a typical heater depends on how much care has been given: softened water, periodic flushing of tank sediment, etc. Elements corrode and eventually fail. Tanks also can develop hairline leaks which are impossible to locate or repair.
Find the most energy efficient tank and install it. You will then have a reliable source for hot water and one less worry.
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Rashid wrote:

Just had mine replaced under warranty. Few months ago had to have pressure relief valve changed and then thermostat controls. They would not replace until it started leaking which it did over the weekend. Slightly acidic water here eats a water heater every 5-6 years. If repairman says replace it, replace it.
Frank
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wrote:

If the leak is the pipe, fix that first. If its actually leaking from the tank, then you do have to replace it. Now shut off the power and open the side panels. Dry things to be sure they are not wet. Assuming you are comfortable around electricity, turn the power back on and be sure there is power at the tank. Use a meter or a neon tester. It should be around 220V. Then with the water being cold, there should be power going to the elements. They are usually round or round center with a square plate and 4 bolts. If it is, the element is bad. If not, the control is bad. There should be two elements and two controls. If you are not familiar with the parts, controls have a dial on them to set the temperature. I already explained the elements. Elements are either threaded in like a pipe, or held bu 4 bolts if you have that type. If you replace something, take the old one along so you get the righ wattage and length. The controls either snap in, or have sheet metal screws. Always do all work with the power turned off except the testing. Electric water heaters are pretty simple. Only 5 parts. The tank itself (includiing the drain valve), the upper element, lower element, upper control, lower control. The releif valve is not part of the tank if you buy a new one, so get a new one. If you do need to replace the tank and DUI, aside from carrying the thing to the basement, it's not all that hard. Two pipes, and two wires on screws. Of course if the new tank is taller or shorter, you got to change the pipes, so try to find one the same size if you can.
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wrote:

Find an auto mechanic. He will surely tell you the water heater is still good so you can keep it. Then just have your "repair man" come back out "reconnect the wires" each time it stops. Bubba
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if the leak is where a pipe enters the tank just replace the tank, fioxing that fitting will just result in more leaks.
hot water tanks are realtively cheap dependable appliances.
think of this often 500 bucks installed, average life 10 years.
thats 50 bucks a year, or not even a decent candy bar a week.
the best fix for a old tank is replacement and new tanks are more efficent, thanks to foam insulation and arent filled with gunk which leads to higher operationg costs and less hot water
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