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How to replace the heating element in an electric hot water heater without draining the tank

Posted by Samurai Appliance Repair Man, in Water Heater 13 December 2012 · 3,024 views
water heater, element
If you need to replace the heating element in your electric water heater, you may be thinking that you need to first drain the tank. You could do it that way but the Old Timers would shake their head at you and think, "What a rube."

Below, a few of the Master Appliantologists here at the Academy offer some tips and procedures for repalcing the heating element with a tank full and not making a flooded mess:

Quick and dirty water heater element change

turn off power to heater

turn off water to heater or house

re-leave pressure anywhere you want but when it's gone close the valve (sink , tub ect )

remove cover and disconnect wires

get new heater element ready , remove from package , put on gasket ect

put big towel down in front of heater

loosen old element with wrench about a half turn

hold new element in one hand , unscrew old element with the other , and switch them out quickly ( make sure as your unscrewing the old element the o ring comes with it )

use wrench to tighen , hook up wires ect , your done

if done right you will loose less than a glass of water on the floor

always leave yourself the out if things go wrong of reversing and putting the old element back in , if you can't get the threads to start or something like that


I have done hundreds this way and even the old 4 bolt type with no problems at all


I change all my elements without draining.
You lose almost no water.
However,keep a towel and shop vac close by.
The only problem comes in when it is a old corroded element and the rubber gasket wants to stick in the hole.
Other times,the element is busted and hangs up coming out.
If the gasket sticks,remove the new gasket from the replacement element and re-use the old gasket.

NOTE: You can not drain a heater from the high temp pop valve.


I change the element with out draining the tank... Turn off the power........Shut off incoming supply line........Open the hot side of the faucet to relieve the pressure then close the valve..............Loosen the element a few turns and you should be able to see if the gasket is stuck to the tank, just use a small flat bladed screwdriver to pry loose....... have the new element in hand as you remove the old one........ when removed, just drop it and insert the new one......you are lucky if the customer has their tank sitting in a drip pan...... :thumbsup: ..........If you need to remove the water, disconnect the incoming line and the outlet side..................................Use some compressed air on the outlet side ( draw tube high in tank )...... water level will be expelled out the incoming side to the level of the fill tube ( lowest point )..... Not all of the water will be out , BUT, it will be lighter.......




Source: suggestion for new electric water heater?


LG Refrigerator Compressor Start Relay Madness

Posted by Samurai Appliance Repair Man, in Refrigerator Repair 13 December 2012 · 2,073 views
LG, refrigerator, start relay and 1 more...
Every now and then, you run into a real CF when you're trying to order a part to fix an appliance. A case in point is trying to get a start relay kit for some models of LG refrigerators, such as the LFX25960ST.


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Grand Master kdog, adept extroidinaire of all things appliance repair, explains how to de-frak this mess:

I had the exact issue with the same model # before - this got me out of it.

The components do not all show up on the literature - at the time I was working for a very large company that had alot of pull with LG and I begged them to contact LG to correct this issue for future folks that get caught.

I did not replace the capacitor as it was not required



One of the prongs on the relay will just be unused - no biggie, I knew this because i was sent to the fridge with a control board that had been ordered and overnighted (very costly delivery) - just to find out there was no issue with the board, can't just look at the lady and say I need to order parts again (no fridge!), rummage around in truck and find replacement by eyeball matchup (no app for that).

I should expand on that a bit - I recognized the particular model of Embraco compressor that I have seen many times in W/P built fridges and went from there.

Relay terminals are all numbered



Here's the link to the start relay you need ==> http://www.repaircli.../4387835/586449


Source: LG Fridge Model# LFX25960ST, Totally Stumped!


Troubleshooting a Frigidaire Dishwasher with the Spray Arm Re-Direct Check Ball

Posted by Samurai Appliance Repair Man, in Dishwasher Repair 12 December 2012 · 1,487 views
frigidaire, dishwasher and 2 more...
If you're having washability problems with this funkified Frigidaire-design dishwasher that uses a check ball to alternate the spray between the upper and lower spray arms, Professor Willies explains the basic operation:

You can simulate the pause of the control to check if the spray arm switch from bottom to top and you can tell by the sound change that the top arm is routing instead of the lower arm, (top arm spraying against door is louder).

Start the unit up and let it run for about two minutes then carefully pull in on the door handle for about 1/2 second and release so it while holding door shut. This creates a pause just like the timer/control board would do.

The pump has to run for at least around two minutes with the lower arm spraying before you can try to switch to the upper arm because there is a bleed hole that water can slowly bypass the check ball thus filling the tube that runs to the upper spray arm up with water that will come rushing back down the tube and re-seat the check ball against the lower spray arm outlet then the pump starts again and pushing the check ball against the lower arm outlet and water flows to upper arm.

To switch from upper arm to lower arm there is a longer pause because it has to let the water complete empty back down the tube and let the check ball settle back down on the lower end of the ramp before starting up the pump again and sealing the check ball against the upper arm outlet.


And Grand Master kdog offers this experiential wisdom:

I have seen several of these balls 'wear out" - often they become almost oblong and bind in the track


Here's the replacement electronic control ==> http://www.repaircli...4806401/1793650

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And here are the various ball and housing parts:


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Source: Frigidaire D.W. Model# DGBD2432KF1, Service Manual Request


Refrigerator Troubleshooting and Repair: Ice, Frost, and Condensation

Posted by Samurai Appliance Repair Man, in Refrigerator Repair 08 December 2012 · 7,384 views
refrigerator, ice, frost and 2 more...
A common problem with refrigerators is the appearance of various forms of water in places where it shouldn’t be. Examples are: water at the bottom of the freezer and dribbling out the door in a side by side refrigerator; fuzzy frost built up on the back wall inside the freezer compartment; moisture on beer bottles and the side walls inside the refrigerator compartment (also called the Beer Compartment); solid slab of ice on the bottom of the freezer compartment.

In each of these examples, we’re dealing with water that’s out of place. Water in a refrigerated space can take on three forms: ice, frost, and condensation. Which of these forms you see, along with where you see it, are important clues to help you zero in on the needed repair.

Condensation problems will appear as “sweating” on jars and bottles and sometimes even on the sidewall in the refrigerator compartment. Condensation is caused by water vapor condensing into a liquid as it hits the cold surfaces inside the refrigerator. When you see this, it means outside, humid air is getting inside the refrigerated compartments when and where it shouldn’t. So, you’re looking for bad gaskets, doors not closing properly, or doors being left open from carelessness.

Ice refers to liquid water that froze into a solid. This sounds obvious but it’s an important distinction from frost, also known as rime ice, that fuzzy looking stuff that is formed when water vapor condenses directly into a solid. The important point here is that ice and frost are the effects of two completely different underlying causes.

If you see smooth or solid ice in a freezer, then you know you’re really looking for liquid water in places where it shouldn’t be (that ended up freezing): clogged condensate drain in the drip trough below the evaporator coil; ice maker fill tube leaking or out of place; ice maker mold leaking.

If you see frost or rime ice in a freezer, then you know you’re really looking for water vapor that’s getting into the compartment. How does water vapor get into a refrigerator? It comes in with the outside air. In most cases when you see frost in a freezer, you’re looking for an air leak: bad door gaskets or doors not closing all the way. This video shows an extreme example of rime ice all over the contents inside a freezer:



Sometimes, you’ll see both ice and frost appearing together in a freezer which can make diagnosis tricky. In this video, I walk you through an example of such a case and I explain the failure sequence:




A special (but common) case for diagnosing frost in a freezer is when you see frost accumulated on the evaporator coil or back wall inside the freezer that covers the evaporator coil. This indicates a defrost system failure (defrost terminator stuck open, burned out defrost heater, bad defrost timer (on older units) or adaptive defrost control (ADC) board).

The reason rime ice forms on the evaporator coil in the first place is because the coil operates at a temperature of -20F. At that temperature, water vapor that contacts the coil will condense and freeze directly into a solid, forming rime ice. Every few hours the defrost system should kick in and melt that ice, because if it’s allowed to accumulate it will eventually act as an insulator, preventing the air from contacting the evaporator coils and getting cold. The resulting problem would first be seen as a warm refrigerator compartment and, if allowed to continue, eventually the freezer will also get warmer than normal (normal = 0F). Rime ice accumulated on the inside of the back wall in the freezer will often be seen at this point.

This melted rime ice has a special name: condensate. (Not to be confused with condensation, although the words are similar, they arise from two different causes.) Condensate refers to the water that gets melted off the evaporator coil in the freezer compartment during the defrost cycle. This condensate drips onto the condensate drip trough below the evaporator coil and drains out the condensate drain– a hole in the condensate drip trough– through a tube to the drain pan placed down by the compressor where it eventually evaporates due to the combined action of the compressor heat and condenser fan motor.

This video shows a freezer with extreme rime ice buildup on the back wall inside the freezer due to a defrost system failure:



If you need expert, interactive help in troubleshooting and repairing your refrigerator and service manuals, become an Apprentice here at the Appliantology Academy ==> http://apprentice.appliantology.org/

Subscribe to our FREE, award-winning newsletter, Appliantology: The Oracle of Appliance Enlightenment==> http://newsletter.fixitnow.com and download your free report on appliance brand recommendations! Every issue is jam-packed with appliance repair tips and inside information direct from the Samurai’s fingertips to your engorged and tingling eyeballs.


Converting Kenmore refrigerator model number to LG equivalent for Tech Info

Posted by Samurai Appliance Repair Man, in General Appliance Repair Wisdom 02 December 2012 · 1,662 views
LG, Kenmore, model number
As almost everyone with a pulse knows, Kenmore appliances aren't made by a manufacturing company called, "Kenmore." There ain't no Kenmore factory in Malaysia or anywhere else. The only thing Kenmore makes is money.

Kenmore appliances are all made by other, well-known manufacturers under contract for Kenmore. This can present a problem getting tech info, like service bulletins and manuals, for independent appliance techs. Since the technical documentation is written by the original manufacturer, you need to be able to convert the Kenmore model number into it's original manufacturer equivalent.

I recently ran into this with an LG-made Kenmore refrigerator. Chief richseattle56 explains the arcane and mysterious method for converting LG-made Kenmore appliance model numbers into their LG equivalent for purposes of finding tech info on the unit:

Here is a simple way to get LG made Kenmore Service Manuals and tech support. The LG number for the tech information is in the Kenmore model number. It is the five numbers after the first three, for instance, if the model number is 795.75202401, on the LG tech Assist site, click on Tech Publications chose Refrigerator and enter in the search box 75202 and click on search the different manuals will show up. This will give you the exact manual.



Source: Converting Kenmore refrigerator model number to LG equivalent






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