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How to test water heater wires
Do not touch electric water heater that is wet. Turn Power OFF.

Multimeter

Test for breaks in wire/ Test for voltage
Most appliance require 80% rated voltage to function correctly
Buy
Multimeters at Amazon
Electric testers at Amazon
Resource:
How to test and replace element
How to test thermocouple
Element tests for 120 volts
How to test wire
Safety when testing wires:
Never touch wet or previously flooded appliance.
Never stand on wet surface when working on electric.
Never stand on bare soil, put down dry boards.
Tape tester leads to wood sticks to keep hands away from power.
Use non-contact voltage tester before touching wires.
Never touch or lean into any made of metal.
Remove metal objects from pockets.
Do not use oxygen or fuel accelerants in same room as electrical repairs

Resource:
Basic house wiring

Non-contact voltage tester

Test for power without touching connectors
NEVER assume power is OFF
Buy:
Non-contact voltage tester Amazon
Electric testers at Amazon
Resource:
How to test electric power is off
wire connector assortment

Twist-on wire connector assortments

Do not reuse old connectors
Buy:
Connector assortment at Amazon
Connector assortment at Amazon
Resource
How to select and install twist-on wire connectors
Weatherproof wire connector

Weatherproof wire connector

Connector cavity is full of silicone
Built-in cover keeps silicone in place
Protect from water, dust etc
Buy from my affiliate links
Weatherproof size 14 to 6 Amazon
Weatherproof size 22 to 8 Amazon

Resource
How to select and install connectors
Wire connector wrench
Wrench to apply wire connectors
Tighten connector

Buy:
Wire connector blaster
Twist connector wrenches at Amazon

Resources:
How to twist wire
How to select and install twist-on wire connectors

Buy:
Blue for 16-14 wire
Yellow for 12-10 wire

Resource:
How to install terminals
Treminals

Terminals

Buy:
Terminal kit
Blue for 16-14 wire
Yellow for 12-10 wire
Push on wire connectors

Push-on wire connectors in place of twist-on connectors

Buy:
Push on wire connectors Amazon
Red 3P connector for 10-14 gauge wire
Lever connectors for stranded wire at Amazon
remove cable staple
Buy
End cutting nippers at Amazon

 
linesman pliers
Buy tools:
Wire strippers at Amazon
Linesman pliers
Utility knife at Amazon
End cutting nippers at Amazon

Use solid copper wire
Fire inside timer caused by stranded wire
Keep enclosure door closed at all times
Buy:
soldering guns
Resource

Timer caught fire
Test electricity
Power is ON

Test for 240Volt across top two screws on upper thermostat.

Turn Power OFF to conduct rest of tests

If tank is not receiving 240Volts, test electricity to water heater
Avoid electrocution/
Multimeter
Tape multimeter leads to wood
Stand on dry boards
Do not touch metal
Wear dry clothes
Do not touch wet water heater
Water heater cover
Larger image
Turn power OFF

Open covers on water heater

Remove insulation and plastic protectors
Foam insulation might need to be cut back
Power is OFF
Tighten all screws very tight against copper wire
Look for signs of high heat and burning.
Look for melted insulation on wires. Look for burned or blackened wires.
Use nose and smell for burning.
Melted wire
Look for burned or melted wire
Replace part
Cut back wire
Test continuity of wire/ or replace wire
Inspection of water heater finds burned wire:
Power is OFF
Action:
Replace part that burned wire is connected to.
Test continuity of wire that has been burned.
Replace wire that has no continuity.

How to test element.
How to replace element
How to test thermostat. (it is easier to replace both thermostats)
How to replace thermostat
How to wire thermostats



Multimeters at Amazon
Analog and digital multimeters
How to test continuity of wire:
When burned wire is discovered/ or bad wire is suspect
Power is OFF
Set multimeter to read ohms.
Disconnect wires from each tank part. For example disconnect wire from thermostat and disconnect other end of wire from element.
Test #1: Put tester leads on both ends of wire.
If test reads ohms, then wire is good.
Test #2: Test each end of wire to bare metal part of tank.
If test reads ohms, then wire is shorted and must be replaced.
Tanks with foam insulation may need to be replaced.

Test wire between water heater and breaker box
Turn off breaker.
Remove wires from top of heater.
Re-test wires on tank.
Test wire from breaker with breaker off. A wire from breaker can have continuity but still be shorted to ground or be partially melted.
Test for continuity between each wire and each wire to ground. There should be no current flowing between any of the wires.
Read
Push on wire connectors If wire is too short / use push-on wire connector
Do not use wire connectors inside water heater
Do not put stranded wire under screw plate... fire hazard from wires getting loose
Maximum 2 wires under screw plate
Buy:

Push on wire connectors Amazon
3 Port for 10-14 wire/ 50 pcs
6 port for 12-18 / 50 pcs
Lever nuts for stranded wire at Amazon
Check if wire insulation is under screw plate.
Loose wires cause high heat and fire
Only copper wire should be under screw plate.
Check that wires are tight.

Melted wire will pass continuity test.

If ECO keeps tripping, and thermostat is good,  and water is not overheated, then replace wires inside tank.
Breaker tripped, and now ECO is tripping:
Water heater had leak, and now ECO is tripping:
Quick answer: Replace thermostats and test elements
Inspect for burned parts and and loose wires: Replace burned part.

ECO trips when wire is partially melted due to short or electrical overheat.
Wire can no longer carry element wattage, causing heat that trips ECO.

This happens if water heater leak caused short. Or if circuit breaker tripped. Or if water heater had a fire. Replace wires.
Resource:
Water heater is tripping breaker
wire water heater thermostat
This voids product warranty
How to change wiring / foam-insulated tank
Rewire foam insulated  tank
 If wire is bad/ replace wire
If tank has foam insulation, then replace tank if warranty is current.

If tank is beyond warranty, and has foam insulation, then drill hole and drop new wire down into heater, or drill holes and install conduit on outside of tank.

Start with 3/8" standard drill bit to drill through steel top.
Then use 36" drill bit to drill through foam
Drill through top of tank near wiring cavities
Keep drill bit near outer edge of tank shell
Drill horizontially as needced to run wire into wiring cavities

Buy
36" drill bit
Water heater element Undersized wire can cause melted parts.
If you installed new element, and now ECO is tripping:
Quick answer: Replace thermostats and test elements
Inspect for burned parts and and loose wires: Replace burned part.

ECO can trip when wire gauge is too small for element wattage, causing heat that trips ECO.
This happens if replacement element has greater wattage than shows on label on side of tank.
Compare rating label on side of tank with wattage rating printed on end of each element.
Select correct wire and breaker size
Transfer switch
Use twist lock plug for extension cord that plugs into compressor
Install 20 or 30 amp as needed.
X Y terminals go to either Hot,
W is always Neutral
G is ground
These are standard markings for 240 volt plugs and outlets.
Connect X to one hot busbar inside the transfer sawitch, connec6t Y to other hot busbar, ground and Neutral to respective terminals
Buy:
Leviton 2711/ 125-250 volt/ 20-30 amp/ 3 pole
Resources
How to wire subpanel
How to wire transfer switch
All brands of thermostats are interchangeable
New water heaters have high density elements. Low density elements can last longer
$48 for 2 low density 240 Volt 4500 watt elements/  + Upper and lower thermostat


Buy LOW density kit:
Apcom plumbers pack Amazon
110-160
Resource
How to replace elements
How to replace thermostats
How to wire thermostats

$35 for 2 high density 240 volt 4500 watt elements + Upper and lower thermostat

Apcom thermostats
Buy HIGH density kit:
Apcom plumbers pack Amazon
110-160
Resource
How to replace elements
$45 for 2 low density 240 Volt 4500 watt elements/+ Upper and lower thermostat

Therm-o-disc thermostats
Buy LOW density kit:
Therm-O-disc low density plumbers pack
90-150
Resource
How to replace elements
$45 for 2 high density 240 Volt 4500 watt elements/ + Upper and lower thermostat

Therm-o-disc thermostats
Buy HIGH density kit:
Therm-O-disc high density plumbers pack
Therm-O-disc high density
Therm-o-disc high density / copper element
90-150
Resource
How to replace elements
Additional links

Electricity from pole to breaker box

See basic 120V and 240V water heater circuits

Compare all water heater timers
Do it yourself
Do it yourself water heater

How to twist wire

How to wire off-peak water heater
Cutler Hammer C25BUB230A
Contactors
Recirculation system
Hot water circulation system
Solar water heater
9+ ways to save with water heater

Motorized shut off valve

Anode rods

Clean sediment from tank
Low water pressure
Low water pressure


Stacking
Troubleshoot gas water heater

Troubleshoot Electric heater

How to install tank-type gas water heater
Support the economy:
Buy water heaters from my associate links:

50 gallon Gas water heaters at Amazon
40 gallon gas water heaters at Amazon
50 gallon Electric water heaters at Amazon
40 gallon electric water heaters at Amazon
Hybrid / heat pump/ water heaters at Amazon

Resources:
How to install gas water heater
How to install electric water heater
Troubleshoot gas water heater
Troubleshoot electric water heater
Point of use water heaters
Resources:
Troubleshoot Gas valves with manuals
Icon gas valve

How to replace water heater element Waste King disposal
How to wire tankless electric

How to install tankless recirculation


Install point of use water heater
Titan tankless

Contactors/ relays
Install and troubleshoot garbage disposal Waste King disposal
Programmable timers

Woods timers
surge protection
Anode rods anode rods
Recirculation system

Tankless recirculation
Point of use water heater
Type 1 and type 2 surge protection surge protection
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Electronic parts

Industrial supplies

Tools and home improvement

Home and garden

Hayward pool
Pentair pool

Southwire electric
Buy
Tools

DEWALT
Black and Decker
Stanley
SKIL
Makita
Porter-Cable
Bosch

Irwin Hand tools
Klein hand tools
Fluke electrical testing
Dremel hobby tools

Campbell Hausfeld air powered
Tekton automotive

Powerbuilt automotive
Saws and saw blades
box timers Resource:
Compare box timers
DPDT timers
Intermatic
Control water heater w/ Z-wave
Intermatic control centers Resource:
Intermatic control centers: and parts
Digital control centers and parts
Tork control centers and parts
Subpanels
All control centers and parts
Enclosures
programmable timer Resource:
Programmable timers
Countdown timers
Off delay timers
On delay timers
Timer modules
Din rail
Twin & one-shot
Woods
Intermatic
Tork
Low voltage power packs Recirculation systems
Enter Amazon from my links
Amazon

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