The electricity needs to make a complete circuit. Something is blocking the
flow of electric.
If I was there at the job site, I'd want to turn off the power. Disconnect
both leads from the elements. Ohm them out, and see if they are near zero
ohms. With the elements disconnected, turn the power back on and check to
see if the wires going to the elements have 220 volts. Yeah, I know, that's
dangerous. Exposed wires with electric in them.
Been a while since I worked on electric WH, but there is a switch of sorts,
which controls which element gets power. That's at the top element. The
bottom element comes on, when the top thermostat shows enough temperature.
I suspect a bad thermostat.
Christopher A. Young
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