Which panel has the temp settings

The Tank Which panel has the temp settings

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    Hi which panel located on top or bottom of front of heater should I remove to regulate temp of heater. It’s a 50 gallon heater new and when two poeple take long showers what we get cold water? Both panels are covered by white solid material under panel. I assume that’s where the temp guage is?




    There are thermostats under each cover. When the WH is cold, the top thermostat supplies power to the top element. When the top thermostat is satisfied, power is transferred from the top element to the lower thermostat. The lower thermostat supplies power to the lower element. Hot water floats on cold. If the top thermostat is set higher than the lower then the water is the lower half will always be cooler. If the lower thermostat is set higher than the top then the whole tank will eventually come to the temperature set at the lower thermostat.

    Cold showers: A 50 gallon WH will only have about 40 galons of HW. A 3 gpm shower using 2 gallons of hot and 1 gallon of cold only gives you 20 minutes of shower. Turning the lower thermostat to the highest setting may give you another 6 minutes or so. But higher temperatures will result in higher pressures and a greater chance of TPR valve lifting.

    A 4500 watt WH can only make about 20 gallons/hour of 90 F rise water.



    Thanks David,

    Per your suggestion we will get the 4 kids and 2 adults in and out quickly, we will also schedule much better between showers. I guess we should just leave the thermostate alone.:D


    Larry Weingarten

    Hello Vince: Try running water at a tap until it’s hot. Fill a plastic cup and then measure the temperature with a candy or meat thermometer. Experts disagree on what is a good temperature. Manufacturers say 120 to reduce scalding risk. ASHRAE says 140 to reduce Legionnaires risk. If everyone in the household is healthy with none very old or young, I like 130 as it greatly slows Legionnaires and doesn’t scald as quickly as hotter water. I set both thermostats the same, though different folks have reasons for setting them differently.

    So, find out what temp you have now and if it isn’t a risk, set things about ten degrees higher to see if that helps. Also, make certain you have low flow showerheads, or even consider some ultra low flow heads to make the hot water last longer.

    Yours, Larry

    ps. Thermostats are under the white foam. Do turn off power to the heater before removing the covers. 240 volts is nothing to play with 😉


    Many thanks Larry, will do.


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