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Thread: Bad heater?

  1. Back To Top    #1

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Cedar Island NC (Outer Banks)
    Posts
    84

    Bad heater?

    Used spa...2004 era. Just got it going a few days ago and all went well until today when the GFCI kept tripping. I'm seeing a small leak from around the heater. Heater is a tube like thingy under a Hydroquip 6230 controller). I'm guessing that the heater is causing the GFCI trip somehow (noted a chap on here said that was his problem on a tub in Mexico).

    Think my diagnosis is correct and I should go ahead and get a heater? Thanks in advance, Steve
    Cedar Island NC (Southern Outer Banks)
    Splash Super Pool (40x20)
    29,000 gal; AG; Sand Filter; 1.5HP pump. Use the cosmic Taylor Test Kit
    New Aquarite SWG w/T-15 cell; New Dolphin Supreme M4 Robot cleaner

  2. Back To Top    #2

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    South Central NJ
    Posts
    3,192

    Re: Bad heater?

    Typically, it's the heater element that breaks down and leaks current to ground, tripping the GFCI. Verify it first. Other things can trip it too. Ozonators, motors, and accessories can do it too.

    Remove power from the tub and disconnect the element's two power leads, keeping them positioned so as not to short against something.

    Apply power. When you hear the relay for the heater click and it doesn't trip the GFCI, you found the culprit. Verify that power is on the two leads with a volt meter. It should be either 120VAC or 240, depending on what the tub's main power is.

    If the heater element is bad, many tubs have valves to isolate the stainless heater tube the element is in. and at the pumps, enabling full tub repairs. Darned annoying when the valve is broken.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

  3. Back To Top    #3

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Cedar Island NC (Outer Banks)
    Posts
    84

    Re: Bad heater?

    Scott: re "If the heater element is bad, many tubs have valves to isolate the stainless heater tube the element is in. and at the pumps, enabling full tub repairs. Darned annoying when the valve is broken."

    • Can you elaborate on this? Not sure what you mean.
      I'll do the electrical tests when it quits raining.
      I'm assuming that the stainless tube I see under the controller is a sealed unit and has to be replaced vs repaired? (It is dripping water)
      Is there a trick to removing the heater without dumping the water?


    MANY thanks! Steve

    On edit: Did the tests. Have 240V; Have 10.9 ohms between the 2 terminals on the heater; Tub works normal and no GFCI trip with the heater disconnected. There is water leaking around the the right most terminal (the black one).
    Cedar Island NC (Southern Outer Banks)
    Splash Super Pool (40x20)
    29,000 gal; AG; Sand Filter; 1.5HP pump. Use the cosmic Taylor Test Kit
    New Aquarite SWG w/T-15 cell; New Dolphin Supreme M4 Robot cleaner

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    South Central NJ
    Posts
    3,192

    Re: Bad heater?

    It means you wouldn't have to drain the tub to do the repair. Saves time. If there are valves to shut the spa from the pumps and heater tube, you don't drain the tub.

    Heater elements typically have a couple gaskets/insulators on the ends. It sounds like the gasket gave, water got at the insulator and shorted. Hence the leak and the tripping GFCI.

    Scott
    Owner of - PoolGuyNJ LLC
    Expert Pool and Spa Repairs, Renovations, and Augmentation. Helping people decide what is the right gear for meeting their needs. Expectations Set, Expectations Met, No Surprises.

  5. Back To Top    #5

    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Cedar Island NC (Outer Banks)
    Posts
    84

    Re: Bad heater?

    Ahhhh. No valves so it'll be drain time. Thanks much. I'll wait until Mon and use it w/o the heater over the weekend. Will report back for posterity. Thanls again, Steve
    Cedar Island NC (Southern Outer Banks)
    Splash Super Pool (40x20)
    29,000 gal; AG; Sand Filter; 1.5HP pump. Use the cosmic Taylor Test Kit
    New Aquarite SWG w/T-15 cell; New Dolphin Supreme M4 Robot cleaner

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