replacing electric hot water tank thermostast?

My GE 40 gal electric hot water tank (actually made by Rheems) is tripping the high temperature limit safety switch. I suspect that one of the two thermostats has its contacts welded together. The manual that came with it shows me how to change the heating elements, but not the thermostats. I can't readily see how they unfasten. Anyone else done this? The manual shows an exploded view, and gives me the part number for them, but the diagram is too poor quality to help. The unit is little over 5 years old, but had a 9 yr warranty. I live out in the boondocks, and there are no service people close. I installed it myself.
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jhill wrote:

Those thermostats are usually held with spring clips which keep their sensing portions snug against the tank shell.
Look at them and you'll see how to spread the clips to release them.
If they are the usual "standard" size and shape, replacements are available at Home Cheepo and Lowes, among others.
Jeff
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jhill
They usually slide down toward the bottom of the tank to release from the spring clips.
Stretch
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Thanks, that is the kind of info I needed. I was particularly wondering about how to remove the top thermostat which is right up against the high-temp limit unit. If it slides down, then that will do it. I'll try it tomorrow.
Thanks to everyone who responded.

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coltage before you do anything else.
Might also be a good time to drain her down and flush it out as well.
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Literally had to do this same thing this weekend.
Turn the power off. If its the bottom stat, you remove the two wires leading to it, and slide the stat up, and off the clips. Top, normally you remove the reset, and the upper stat slides up as well.
Make sure its the stats, I had a combination issue, a burned out lower stat and a burned out lower element.
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in message

Thanks. Actually, we had to have hot water(per the wife), so I went out and bought a cheap new one and replaced it. I have time to play around with the old one. When I have it fixed and the new one goes out I will put it back again. Fortunately it takes only about a hour to change, mostly waiting for the tank to drain. Since I did it only 5+ years ago and used flex pipe for all connections, the piping comes off easy. I already checked the continuity on the heating elements, and they seem to be ok. Just have to figure out if the thermostats slide up or slide down. They sure did not leave you much room to manouver. Didn't have time today to look at them -- will have to wait till this weekend, I guess.
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There are various websites out there that will help you along with this, google water heater repair, or something similar.
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