I went to replace one of the heater elements in my house's hot water heater last night. I had set up a hose to drain the tank (after cutting the house's water off) and let it go all day long. I checked after getting back from buying the proper element from Lowes and there was nothing coming out of the hose. So I cut the power to the heater and started the job.
All four bolts came loose and I pried it out about 1/2" and no leaks, so I figured, "we're good to go"~~~NOT.
The element wouldn't come out, and I started wrestling with it,......................
Then the water started coming out! it seems that the tank was still full.
I tried to put it back, but that wasn't happening anymore, so all of a sudden it was Floodville at my house!
I was on the floor beside the damn thing and my wife had to run and get the Shop Vac to help me cope with the water leak. I should say TRY to cope,.....
After several times draining the Shop Vac the damn thing finally stopped leaking. The floor was soaked. It took me another hour to get the son of a b*tch element out. ~They~ (whomever they were) had put the wrong one (a double size one) in years before, and probably had to force it in. So I had to ~force~ it out,.....and it was also stuck in built-up residue in the tank. I usually don't do well sitting on the floor for long times, but was there for four and a half hours last night. It was my own little hell that life handed me last night, and it wasn't pretty either. I was a whipped dog when I finally got that SOB back together and working.
Thinking back on it, I didn't buy a new water heater for $288.00 just to save some money. It would have required changing the plumbing from behind the water heater to the top side, and I didn't want to hassle with it. Boy was I a chump, 'cause I still don't have a new one and the old one is 1/3 full of crap. So I'll probably have to replace it anyways in a short time.
Saving a little money is not always what it's cracked up to be.