Will Bad Water Heater Element Trip Breaker

By | October 12, 2022



For many homeowners, a water heater is an essential part of their day-to-day life. From hot showers to washing dishes, having hot water on-demand is a basic necessity. But a malfunctioning water heater can present a major problem and even trip a circuit breaker—which can mean a costly repair.

A bad water heater element is one of the most common culprits for a tripped breaker. But what exactly is an element, and what causes it to go bad? In this article, we’ll discuss the basics of a water heater element, why it trips breakers, and what you can do to prevent it from happening.

The water heater element is the part of the appliance which heats up the water. It works much like an electric stove element, where electricity is sent through a coil of metal, heating up the water inside the tank. The element is designed to detect when the water temperature reaches a certain point, then shuts off the heating process until more hot water is needed.

Unfortunately, over time, the element can become corroded or damaged, leading to malfunctions. This can cause it to draw too much electricity, tripping the breaker which controls the water heater. You may also see a humming sound coming from the appliance, which could indicate that the element is stuck in the “on” position and drawing too much electricity. If this is the case, turn off the breaker right away.

Another common reason for a bad element is a lack of maintenance. Water contains minerals which can build up on the surface of the element over time, leading to corrosion and eventual failure. Even with regular maintenance, the element can become clogged with sediment, causing it to stick in the “on” position. To prevent this from happening, have your water heater flushed and cleaned regularly.

In some cases, the water heater element itself may need to be replaced. This can be a costly repair, so it’s best to catch any malfunctions early. If you notice any of the signs mentioned above, contact a professional right away to inspect your water heater.

By taking the necessary steps to maintain your water heater and catching any issues right away, you can avoid a costly repair and keep your home’s hot water running smoothly. With the proper care and attention, a water heater should last for years without any major problems.


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