Hot Water Loss Help

Hi everyone. About 5 weeks ago, we started losing our hot water output. 5 minutes and it was gone, but back again a few hours later. I assumed one of the elements died (electric heater), but that turned out to not be the case. The plumber recommended having an electrician check the wiring and voltage. That checked out ok (240 volts).
Another plumber came out to check it out, and he said our pressure reduction valve was faulty. At the same time we had the hot water troubles, our water pressure jumped up about 200%. I told the first plumber this, but he didn't think it was a big deal. We had a new PRV intalled, but still have hot water issues. He said that our last step would be to get the dip tube checked out. Does anyone have any familiarity with this, and does this sound like a viable cause of our troubles? TIA for any help!
-Chris
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"Chris Leishear"
Do you mean that the water turns cold after a few minutes, or do you mean that the water stops flowing entirely from the hot side?
If you mean water gets cold prematurely, then perhaps the dip tube has broken. The dip tube is a piece of tubing that takes the cold water coming into the tank, and takes it toward the bottem. It's inside the tank; naturally you can't see it. If it breaks off, then the incoming water will just flow directly over to the hot outlet without being heated properly. It's not uncommon, and the plumber you had should have figured it out.
Since you have an electric water heater, what you describe sounds like an upper element being burned out. You said the plumbers already ruled this out, but I already have my suspicions.
A third, remoter possibility is that there's a cross connection somewhere that's allowing the cold side to mix with the hot. Washing machines and single handle faucets and sometimes produce this.
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The hot water turns cold after a few minutes. Usually within 5-10.

That usually happens every few years, and that's exactly what I thought it was at first. But two different plumbers checked them out, and said it was ok. I don't know why they didn't check the dip tube after ruling out the elements though. I'll get them back out to check the dip tube this time. Thanks for the info!
-Chris
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Thanks everyone for your help. Its turns out one of the thermostats was dead, so that gave off the same symptoms as a burnt out element. It only took 3 visits for them to figure that out, unfortunately. I appreciate all of your help!
-Chris
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depending on what your water pressure was .200% is a big jump,you could be losing all your hot water out of your t + p valve it could be piped outside or into a floor drain (t for temp+ p for PRESSURE). usually on the side or top middle of your water heater.
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (jim donovan) wrote in message

We had a new PRV installed, so the pressure is under control. Since the pressure and hot water issues started at the same time, I'm wondering if when the PRV gave out and broke if the increase in pressure blew out the dip tube. They'll be out Friday to check it, so we'll see.
-Chris
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