The Tank › new heater installation help
- August 22, 2010 at 1:41 pm #13917
I just installed a 50 gallon Whirlpool electric energy smart water heater which replaced a similar size US Craftmaster. The unit will not power up. I have two 30 amp breakers and 10 guage wire with white and black wires with ground. I have 120 volts coming out of one breaker with the white wire and 120 volts coming out of the other breaker with the black wire. At the connection on the water heater I get 120 volts when I put the voltmenter to the white metal connector and ground. I get the same with the black wire metal connector. When I put the voltmeter to both the black and white metal connector, I don’t get anything. I have called Whirlpool custormer service and they insist there is something wrong with the electrical power coming into the unit. Any ideas on what my problem is?August 22, 2010 at 3:06 pm #13921Larry WeingartenParticipant
Hello: There should be two wires coming to the heater, both marked black or black and red as they are both hot. White is meant to be a neutral wire. I’d check at the breakers to see if you can get 240 volts between breakers. This might require the services of an electrician or someone else with that experience. You don’t want to fiddle around or be doing any guesswork with 240 volts 😯
Yours, LarryAugust 22, 2010 at 3:16 pm #13922
I have two wires coming to the heater with a ground. One is black and the other is white. The white is connected to the red wire on the heater and the black is connected to the black wire on the heater. I have a dual 30 amp breaker. The black comes out of one breaker with 120 volts and the white comes out of the other with 120 volts. With this set up, I should be delivering 240 volts to the water heater. Is this correct?August 22, 2010 at 4:56 pm #13923energyexpertParticipant
Yes, you should be getting 240 volts. Even if you are getting 240 volts I would swap that 30 amp breaker with another one in the panel which you know is “good”.
I have seen one leg of a double pole breaker trip internally and the handle not move. Just sensing 120 volts could mean you are feeding one leg through the WH and back. If you read “zero” volts phase to phase, and 120 each phase to ground then one leg of the breaker is open.
I have also seen (just once) 240 volts phase to phase but the busbar to breaker connection had enough corrosion so no current would pass. That is why testing with a known good breaker will tell you if you have a breaker problem.
White wires with voltage should be marked black or red (taped or painted) but some inspectors don’t enforce it.
DavidAugust 22, 2010 at 6:57 pm #13925
Thanks for your reply. I have the hot wire marked with black tape now. I connected the water heater wires up to a similar 30 amp breaker combo that operates my air conditioner and the water heater still does not power up.August 22, 2010 at 9:02 pm #13927
I think I have it figured out. I hooked up each power line individually to the breaker and tested for power at the water heater. One line did not have power at the water heater. My tester indicated power in the line up at the ceiling. When the water heater leaked it must have caused one line to burn somewhere between the ceiling and the heater. I will run a new line tomorrow. Thanks for the replies that kept me searching for a solution.August 23, 2010 at 2:55 am #13928Larry WeingartenParticipant
Hello: Let’s start from the upper panel on the heater. You should find 240 volts above the limit switch. If it isn’t there, back up to the wire nut connections in the junction box on top of the heater. Do you find 240 at the incoming wires? Next. back up further to the breakers themselves and measure at the screws where your two hot wires hook up. You should find 240. If you find no voltage between the breakers, they are both on the same leg of power or one has failed.
This is beginning to sound like it’s either at the connection to the heater or limit switch. Do let us know what voltage you find at the various places 😉
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